Mizoram Seeks Talks with Assam to Normalise Border Situation

Security Beefed up Along Assam Mizoram Border

News18 journalist beaten up by Assam Police while reporting near Assam-Mizoram border; 2 people injured

Union home secretary Rajiv Gauba will chair the meeting.

The move follows a letter from Mizoram chief minister Lal Thanhawla to the home minister on Monday, requesting intervention in the boundary row that flared up last week.

"We also condemn the high handedness of Assam's Hailakandi district administration for utilising highly disproportionate strength of police force to commit such awful and despicable acts on a small group of student volunteers of Mizo Zirlai Pawl (MZP) who were only trying to build a resting shed in a land within the boundary of Mizoram", Michael Lamjathang Haokip, Secretary General TSA, General Headquarters in a statement said. The situation along the Assam-Mizoram border turned violent after police resorted to lathicharge to control some protesting students.

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The joint statement also said "the fourth estate has a responsibility to report in public interest" and "deliberate targeting of journalists in full view can only have the effect of intimidating the media from conducting its duties".

The state governments were asked to take appropriate steps to ensure law and order, prevent the situation from escalating and bring the situation under control.

Assam's Hailakandi locale Deputy Commissioner Adil Khan, in any case, stated, "We have acted with most extreme limitation and connected least power to push back the MZP individuals when they meddled into Assam's domain".

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The school district did not immediately confirm the report, but did say students had been dismissed at the time of the incident. The district said it is taking steps to prevent anything like the alleged event from happening again, the News reported.

The administration of Hailakandi in Assam had clamped prohibitory orders under section 144 of CrPC on 7 March in certain pockets of the district apprehending encroachment attempts from the Mizoram side.

The following day members of several organisations of Mizoram allegedly attempted to intrude into a disputed area of Hailakandi district of Assam and the police had stopped them. In his communication, the Home Minister also urged the Mizoram Chief Minister to ensure peace on the Mizoram side of the border and not to allow people to gather at Bairabi and stage protests there.

The land was donated to the student organisation by his widow, he said.

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Sources in the home ministry said the Assam-Mizoram boundary conflict can be traced back to the British days when the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation was enacted in 1872 and amended by Assam chief secretary W.S. Cosgrave in 1933 to ward off movements and incursions by the Lushai and Kuki tribals into the undivided Cachar district.

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