Over the borderline: On Centre’s role in resolving Assam-Mizoram row

Source: The Hindu

Relevance: Resolving the Assam-Mizoram border dispute

Synopsis: A people-oriented approach facilitated by the Centre can help resolve Assam-Mizoram row

Background

The violent clashes on the Assam-Mizoram border in Lailapur on July 26th culminated in the death of five policemen and a civilian from Assam. FIRs were also filed.

But, the situation now seems to be calming down at least at the leadership level after governments announced withdrawal of FIRs against the Chief Minister of Assam and a Rajya Sabha MP from Mizoram.

Must Read: Assam-Mizoram dispute – Explained in detail
Suggestions/Measures

Addressing the dispute is a necessity. Following steps can be taken:

  • Role of Central paramilitary forces: The governments have already taken the right decision to withdraw their police forces from a four-kilometre “disputed stretch” and let it be manned by central paramilitary forces till a permanent solution is found on the border question.
  • Lifting the blockade: Locals in the Barak Valley in Assam had imposed a blockade, disallowing trucks with essential goods from entering Mizoram. Assam government must compel residents to avoid continuing the blockade.
  • Inquiry into the clashes: An impartial inquiry into the sequence of events that led to the firing incident and the deaths must also be held so that such a situation does not recur.
  • Settling the border dispute peacefully: Instead of a purely juridicial approach involving settling sovereign claims via historical claims, a people-oriented approach by the respective authorities with the facilitation of the Centre can help resolve the issue.
Way forward

Continuing talks without accusing each other is the only way out to lower down tensions between the two States.

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