GUWAHATI: The Mizoram government has submitted to Assam a list of demands in regards to the inter-state border talks between the two neighbouring states.
This was informed by Assam minister Atul Bora.
“We had a long discussion with Mizoram home minister and other senior officials. After discussions, they submitted some demands,” Assam minister Atul Bora was quoted as saying by ANI.
He expressed hope that “definitely something will happen this time”, when asked about the developments regarding the Assam-Mizoram border talks.
The boundary issue between Assam and Mizoram has existed since the formation of Mizoram — first as a union territory in 1972, and then as a full-fledged state in 1987.
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The boundary issue between present-day Assam and Mizoram dates back to the colonial era when inner lines were demarcated according to the administrative needs of British Raj.
The Assam-Mizoram dispute stems from two notifications passed under British era.
First, notification of 1875 that differentiated Lushai Hills from the plains of Cachar.
Second, notification of 1933 that demarcates a boundary between Lushai Hills and Manipur.
Mizoram believes the boundary should be demarcated on the basis of the 1875 notification, which is derived from the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BEFR) Act, 1873.
Mizo leaders are against the demarcation notified in 1933, according to them, the Mizo society was not consulted.
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On the other hand, the Assam government follows the 1933 demarcation.
As a result both states continue to have a differing perception of the border and that is the point of conflict.
There is a 164.6-km inter-state border that separates Assam and Mizoram, with the three Assam districts of Cachar, Hailakandi and Karimganj sharing a border with Kolasib, Mamit and Aizawl districts of Mizoram.
Further, the boundary between Mizoram and Assam follows naturally occurring barriers of hills, valleys, rivers and forests, and both sides have attributed border skirmishes to perceptional differences over an imaginary line.