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Violence reported on disputed Assam-Mizoram border

Officials of both Hailakandi and Kolasib said the security has been beefed up the area where the situation is now under control.

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Hailakandi/Aizawl: In a rerun of last year’s incidents of violence on Assam-Mizoram border, several shacks were torched and a number of people were injured in clashes allegedly between residents of the two states in a disputed area, officials said on Wednesday.

The incidents of violence and arson took place at Kachurthol under Ramnathpur police station area of Assam on Tuesday, prompting the authorities to clamp prohibitory orders under Section 144 CrPC in Hailakandi district, bordering Kolasib district of Mizoram, an Assam official said.

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The disputed Kachurthol is near Bairabi in Kolasib district, the PTI reported.

Officials of both Hailakandi and Kolasib said the security has been beefed up the area where the situation is now under control.

An opposition MLA of Assam urged Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal to protect people from “armed aggression of the neighbouring state”.

The legislature party of the Mizo National Front (MNF), the ruling party of Mizoram, alleged that the disturbances were created by miscreants from Assam.

Hailakandi Deputy Commissioner Megh Nidhi Dahal, Superintendent of Police Pabindra Kumar Nath and DIG (Southern Range) Dilip Kumar Dey visited the site.

Kolasib Deputy Commissioner H Lalthlangliana said, “I am in constant contact with my Hailakandi counterpart. No further incident was reported on Wednesday.”

The violence broke out when two employees of Mizoram’s power department and a member of Bairabi village council went to inspect a power line and were assaulted allegedly by residents of Assam on Tuesday afternoon, Lalthlangliana said.

They also stormed the compound of a religious institution at Gharmura at night in which at least five people were injured, he said adding that they have been admitted to a hospital in Aizawl.

“The Mizo National Front’s Legislature Party Meeting held today condemns the cowardly attack on innocent Mizos by miscreants at Gharmura, Hailakandi District, Assam. I denounce this vile act of violence against children, women and men,” Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga tweeted.

Suzamuddin Laskar, the local MLA of Assam, has written to Sonowal and Director General of Police Bhaskar Jyoti Mahanta urging them to take immediate steps to instil security among the people living along the border areas from “armed aggression of the neighbouring state”.

The Katlicherra MLA belonging to the AIUDF claimed that around 30 people were seriously injured in the attack and about 50 houses were burnt by miscreants from the neighbouring state on Tuesday night.

Earlier on February 3, a school building was damaged in a powerful bomb explosion at Muliala in Hailakandi district near the Mizoram border.

Incidents of violence on the Assam-Mizoram border took place last year too.

Tension prevailed along the border areas for days in October and November 2020, after several people were injured in a clash between the residents of Cachar district of Assam and Mizoram’s Kolasib district.

A number of makeshift huts in the border area were also torched at that time. Central armed forces were deployed on either side of the border and meetings chaired by Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla were held.

A farm hut was set on fire and a plantation was damaged near Thinghlun village in west Mizoram’s Mamit district on August 9.

Only eight days later, there was a clash along Mizoram’s boundary with Cachar district in which a group of people torched makeshift bamboo huts and stalls erected along NH-306.

Three districts of Mizoram – Aizawl, Kolasib and Mamit – share a 164.6-km-long inter-state border with Assam’s Cachar, Hailakandi and Karimganj districts. Several dialogues held since 1995 to resolve the boundary problem have yielded little results.

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