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Mizoram, Assam agree to resolve border dispute

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Aizawl, Feb 9 (PTI) Mizoram and Assam on Friday agreed to make joint efforts to resolve the long pending inter-state border dispute, an official statement said here.

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Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswas Sarma on Friday morning invited his Mizoram counterpart Lalduhoma, who is currently in Guwahati, over a meal and both leaders discussed the border issue.

During the meeting, Lalduhoma and Sarma agreed to make collective efforts to resolve the border dispute between the two northeastern states, it said.

Both leaders also agreed to maintain peace along the borders as long as the two neighbouring states hold border talks, it said.

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Sarma told Lalduhoma that he will send the minister in charge of border to Mizoram when the ongoing budget session of the Assam assembly is over.

Three Mizoram districts - Aizawl, Kolasib and Mamit - share a 164.6 km long border with Assam's Cachar, Karmganj and Hailankandi districts.

The border dispute between the two neighbouring states is a long-standing issue, which mainly stemmed from two colonial demarcations.

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Mizoram claims that 509 square miles area of the inner line reserved forest, notified in 1875 under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BEFR) 1873, falls within its territory. Assam, on the other hand, regarded the border shown in a map prepared by the Survey of India in 1933 as its constitutional boundary.

Vast areas within the inner line reserved forest now fall under Assam. Similarly, a certain extent of the area, as per the 1933 demarcation, is now on the Mizoram side. There is no ground demarcation of boundaries between the two states.

The border dispute between Mizoram and Assam had taken an ugly turn in July 2021 when police forces of the two states exchanged fire at the inter-state boundary, leading to the death of six policemen and a civilian from Assam. PTI COR NN

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