File photo of clash between Assam police and Mizo students at Bairabi along Assam-Mizoram border. Image: Northeast Now

The Mizoram government has asked the Centre to review the Mizoram-Assam boundary.

This was informed by the state home minister Lalchamliana in the Assembly on Monday.

He said that a letter asking revision of the Mizoram-Assam boundary based on the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation of 1873 and the Inner Line of the Lushai Hills Notification, 1993 was sent to Union Home secretary on December 15 last year, the home minister said.

He said that the government is making massive efforts to resolve the dispute at Zophai area near Bairabi town along the state border with Assam.

Lalchamliama also said the core committee constituted by the State government in May 2018 to study the boundary issue has also collected important documents and toposheets related to the Mizoram-Assam border.

On chief minister Zoramthanga’s remark that the State Government has a unique and well planned strategy to resolve the border dispute, Lalchamliana also informed the House that the strategy has not been made public till date.

“It is not convenient to make the strategy known by public. However, concern department and officials were instructed on the inter-state border dispute when need arises,” he said.

In July last year, Zoramthanga had said his government had evolved unique strategy to resolve the border dispute between Mizoram and Assam.

In his public address at the ruling Mizo National Front (MNF) office, Zoramthanga had said that it was not logically prudential to make the strategy public because it could impede the government’s measure to resolve the long pending border dispute.

The border dispute between Mizoram and Assam is a long-pending issue which remains unresolved till date.

The border issue has remained relatively calm despite the dispute nature, except a few instances in 1994, 2007 and 2018 when tensions flared up.

But because of timely intervention by the Central Government, a major crisis was averted.

Several dialogues held since 1995 to resolve the border dispute have yielded little result.

The three Mizoram districts of Kolasib, Aizawl and Mamit share about 123 km long border with south Assam’s Cachar, Hailakandi and Karimganj districts.

While Mizoram claimed that a 509 square-mile stretch of the inner-line reserve forest notified in 1875 under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation of 1873 belongs to Mizoram, Assam side agreed with the constitutional map and boundary drawn by survey of India in 1993.

Mizoram Cabinet had in July last year declared that the inner-line reserve forest area belonged to Mizoram and is the actual boundary of the State.

Lalchamliana had also said in July last year that the state government would not use violence but peaceful dialogue to resolve the state border dispute with Assam.

The last border stand-off took place in March 2018 at Zophai or Karchurthal area near Bairabi town along the Mizoram-Assam border when state’s apex student organization- Mizo Zirlai Pawl (MZP) functionaries attempted to construct a wooden resting shed there.

More than 60 people were allegedly injured when Assam Police resorted to lathi charge to disperse the protesting students.

The border dispute, however, was put under control with the intervention of the Centre, which asked both the Mizoram and Assam governments to maintain status quo on the disputed land till issues are resolved.

A joint committee was also constituted by both the state governments under the Union Home Ministry in that year.

The committee carried out inspection of illegal structures in the inner line reserved forest area along the Mizoram-Assam border, which was suspended again following a dispute at zero point in Dholchera-Phaisen area in April 2018.

The MZP has been constantly demanding the state government to immediate resolve the border dispute.

Northeast Now is a multi-app based hyper-regional bilingual news portal. Mail us at: contact@nenow.in