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Assam border issue discussed in Nagaland Assembly

MLA Imkong Imchen stated that Assam Government has border disputes with various North-Eastern states and mentioned that the recent clash between the Government of Assam and Mizoram Government is a classic example of the aggressive policy of the Assam Government.

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Kohima: Nagaland Legislative Assembly on Thursday discussed the matters of urgent public importance on the Nagaland-Assam border.

Taking part in the discussion on matters of urgent public importance on the Nagaland-Assam border, MLA Imkong Imchen stated that Assam Government has border disputes with various North-Eastern states and mentioned that the recent clash between the Government of Assam and Mizoram Government is a classic example of the aggressive policy of Assam Government.

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Imchen suggested to the Chief Minister of Nagaland to coordinate with all the Chief Ministers of the North-Eastern states to have a common platform and pursue the matter to the Prime minister of India to intervene in the aggressive policy of the Assam Government.

He also suggested the Leader of the House constitute a cabinet sub-committee on Border management to deal with and review all the agreements entered with the Assam Government.

He was up the view that such a committee will have an edge in decision making for far-reaching effects. He added that the Nagaland Armed Police force should be deployed to avert any aggressive policy and protect the border area of Nagaland. He urged the Government to expedite the compilation of the foothill road at the earliest to avoid issues arising due to bandh imposed in Assam.

MLA Yollow Konyak suggested that Government can have a proper land holding system in order to protect the interest of the people living in the border area and emphasised the need for proper deployment of the state police force to tackle the law and order problem.

Nagaland Minister for Higher Education and Tribal Affairs Temjen Imna Along said that the Nagaland-Assam border issue remains unsettled ever since Nagaland became the 16th State of India. Under this issue, he

suggested to the House to upgrade the border magistrate to a Deputy Commissioner level.

He also requested that the 13th Indian Reserve Battalion is sent to the recent disputed areas in order to avoid any future unfortunate incidents. He also said that border outposts should be strengthened with more assertiveness. He also said that Village Guards should be welcomed to assure security along the borders.

Taking part in the discussion on the Assam-Nagaland boundary issue, Nagaland Leader of Opposition T R Zeliang stated that the boundary the dispute has created unrest for the people of both States.

He said that despite such conflict and turmoil, even the Supreme Court has not been able to finalise the boundary issue which he felt was due to the complexity of the matter. Giving a brief historical background of

Nagaland Zeliang stated that there have been Agreements between Assam and Nagaland to solve boundary disputes but the problem continues to exist which he believes, is partly due to the fact that some clauses in the Agreements signed between the two Governments are biased and thereby, unreliable and have worked to the disadvantage of Nagaland to a large extent.

The Leader of Opposition highlighted the Sundaram Report which was formed by the Government of India under the leadership of KVK Sundaram in 1971 to observe the border dispute between Assam and Nagaland. He highlighted various instances where Assam got undue advantage over Nagaland.

Zeliang stated that the imbroglio has to be resolved amicably outside the Court as total dependence on Supreme Court alone may not bring the matter to its logical conclusion. He also suggested that a Parliamentary Panel be constituted to study the border dispute issue and to submit its report within a stipulated time period.

Chief Minister Rio said that he fully endorses with the opposition leader regarding the Nagaland-Assam issue. Rio also said that the people of Nagaland should unite and take a common stand on this issue stating that the agreement between the two states should be without any pre-conditions.

The House unanimously adopted “Three Point Resolution” adopted by Nagaland Legislative Assembly on Assam-Nagaland Border Issue today and decided to pass- A Select Committee of the House be constituted to examine all aspects of the Assam- Nagaland border issue and submit its report within a period of three months. The Select Committee shall consist of the Members- Neiphiu Rio, Chief Minister as Convener, Y Patton, Deputy Chief Minister as Co-Convener, T R Zeliang, Leader of Opposition Co-Convener, P Paiwang Konyak as Member, Jacob Zhimomi as Member, Mhathung Yanthan as Member, Amenba Yaden as Member, K G Kenye, Member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha as Special Invitee, Tokheho Yepthomi, Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha as Special Invitee.

The Commissioner of Nagaland and Secretary in-charge of Border Affairs as Secretary and request the Union Home Minister to ensure maintenance of status quo in letter and in the spirit in the disputed area till

settlement of the issues, also the border issue should be amicably settled outside the court by the two State Governments, by involving the local communities from both sides.

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