Assam-Mizoram border tensions escalate, CM’s seek HM Shah’s assistance
Border tensions between Assam and Mizoram have escalated in recent days. As per reports, at least five Assam police officers were killed and several others were injured in violent clashes that erupted between police from both states along with the bordering areas.
On Monday, the Mizoram government issued a statement, alleging that about 200 Assam Police officers forcibly crossed a duty post manned by the CRPF officers and state police in the Cachar district and damaged vehicles that were traveling along the National Highway between Vairengte (in Mizoram) and Lailapur (in Assam). The statement added that the Assam police assaulted unarmed civilians from Vairengte town who went to the area.
“These unarmed civilians were assaulted by Assam Police by lathi charging them and firing tear gas, thereby causing injuries to several civilians,” the Mizoram government said.
In response, the Assam government issued a statement, alleging Mizoram of breaching the existing agreements and status quo by constructing a road towards Rengati Basti in Assam and destroying the inner line reserve forest in the Lailapur area. It further claimed that the Mizoram Police fired tear gas shells on an Assam police delegation that visited the other side to hold meetings on the matter.
“They (delegation) were surrounded and attacked by a mob of miscreants from the Mizoram side, which was visibly supported by the Mizoram police,” the statement said.
Amit Shah meets North-East CMs
The clashes also resulted in a Twitter war between Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga as they sought assistance from Home Minister Amit Shah to resolve the matter.
The Assam-Mizoram border tension has increased days after Home Minister Shah reportedly chaired a closed-door meeting with chief ministers, chief secretaries, and police chiefs of eight northeastern states during his two-day visit to Meghalaya. As per media reports, the home minister also discussed inter-state border disputes with the state officials.
Addressing an event last week, Shah had expressed the keenness of the PM Modi-led Union government to resolve boundary disputes among the Northeastern states to facilitate peace and development in the region.
Furthermore, former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi targeted Home Minister Shah over the escalation of violence and border disputes between Assam and Mizoram. Taking to Twitter, he stated that the Home Minister failed the country “by sowing hatred and distrust into the lives of people”.
“India is now reaping its dreadful consequences,” Gandhi added, sharing a video of the violence from the region on Twitter.
There have been several incidents of disputes between the Assam and Mizoram over the years as multiple rounds of discussions to resolve the dispute failed to reach an agreement.
In October last year, tensions erupted between Assam and Mizoram after violent clashes broke between the residents of the two states. It resulted in residents blocking highways on both sides and cutting off the supply of resources.