Two influential student bodies in Mizoram, the Mizo Zirlai Pawl (MZP) and Mizo Students’ Union (MSU) have slammed the Mamit deputy commissioner for attending the meeting with Assam’s Karimganj deputy commissioner.
The student bodies also burnt copies of the minutes of the meeting between Mamit DC and Karimganj DC. The meeting was held on Saturday.
The MSU demanded that Mamit deputy commissioner, Dr. Lalrozama and superintendent of police (SP) Shashank Jaiswal be transferred from the border district within 24 hours from Sunday.
Lalrozama, however, said he acted on the state government’s directive and that he was not officially informed not to attend the meeting over the border issue.
The copies of the meeting’s minutes were burnt at two separate locations in Aizawl.
While the MZP burnt the copy near Vanapa hall, the MSU burnt it in front of the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO).
Speaking on the occasion, MZP president Vanlaltana said the student organisation slammed the Mamit DC for holding a meeting with his Karimganj district counterpart, Anbamuthan MP over the border dispute “against the interests of the people of Mizoram”.
He said the Mamit deputy commissioner was urged not to attend the meeting.
“We burnt the copy of the meeting minutes as the MZP is of the opinion that the district administration level meeting on Saturday was an insult to the people of Mizoram and the meeting’s decision could likely to hamper the unity and safety of the Mizos,” he said.
The MZP will continue to oppose any talks between the two governments till the blockade on the National Highway-306 is lifted and the inter-state border dispute is resolved, he added.
MSU vice president J. Lalmuanzuala lashed out at the Mamit DC saying that he has shown disrespect to the NGO’s call by attending the parley.
He accused Lalrozama of deserting the people of Mizoram and compromising with Assam as the minutes of the meeting did not mention the DC opposing the withdrawal of forces from the border areas when the issue was raised by the Karimganj DC.
“We demand the state government to transfer the Mamit DC and SP Shashank Jaiswal within 24 hours as they are not efficient to be posted at the border district,” Lalmuanzuala said.
Meanwhile, Lalrozama said he was unaware of the NGOs opposing the meeting and that he was acting in good faith as per the directive of the state government to bring a solution to the border dispute.
He said the meeting revolves around the unilateral agendas put forward by Karimganj DC, which include withdrawal of Mizoram forces from the border.
“I told my Karimganj counterpart during the meeting that there is no reason for Mizoram to withdraw its forces from the border area as policemen are deployed within the Mizoram territory to restore peace in the area as Assam officials have unleashed panic by torching a farm hut and destroying plantations recently,” he said.
“The force withdrawal agenda was dropped and was not mentioned in the meeting’s resolution,” he claimed.
Lalrozama, who was a physician by profession before joining the Indian civil service, said: “Whatever I did, it was done in good faith. I did not go to the meeting secretly. I want what is the best for Mizoram and to solve the border dispute.”
The district administration level meeting on Saturday resolved to take measures by both sides to restore peace and resume movement of traffic to transport essential commodities between the two neighbouring states.
Meanwhile, Kolasib district deputy commissioner H. Lalthlangliana was intercepted and prevented by protesters at Vairengte from attending a meeting with his Cachar district counterpart.
Vairengte joint village council chairman R. Lalfamkima said the DC was prevented from attending the meeting as the protesters were against holding talks with Assam officials till the road blockade is lifted.
He alleged that the blockade on NH-306, observed by the residents of Lailapur and backed by the Assam government, was an attempt to hit Mizoram economically.
He further said the protesters also demanded that any talks over border issues be held in a place other than the two states.