Assam-Meghalaya to Deploy Neutral Forces on Border

GUWAHATI: In a major step towards resolving the inter-state border dispute between Assam and Meghalaya, the chief ministers of two neighbouring states have agreed to withdraw their state police forces from disputed areas and post the CRPF as neutral force to prevent border clashes.

In yet another decision the two chief ministers who met here on Saturday also agreed to to hand over the probe into the Mukroh violence, in which six people were killed, to the CBI instead of continuing with the ongoing two separate judicial inquiry of respective states.

The decision was taken at a meeting between Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and his Meghalaya counterpart, Conrad K Sangma, here while taking stock of the situation after the recent clashes and law and order situations in two areas of differences, Psiar and Khanduli and Block I and II.

Informing that their meeting was very fruitful, Assam chief minister told reporters, “We have decided that wherever police forces from respective states have been placed, we will ask them to retreat and border areas where police outposts have been set up, CRPF will come as a neutral force. Armed police posted in certain areas will also be pulled back, if necessary. In certain areas, Assam will pull back and in some, Meghalaya will.”

He asserted, “This is being done to build up the confidence among the people and send them a positive message as a neutral force will be coming to those areas and that will ensure there is no violence at those places.”

Mr Sangma after attending the meeting with his counterpart told reporters, “We are happy to tell the people of both states that after a long-drawn exercise, we are on the verge of finalising the actual border pillars and boundary line in the first six resolved areas. Today we have given the green signal for Hahim sector, where the survey has been conducted and we are happy to announce that the boundary line in this sector here has been finalised.”

“Similarly, in the remaining five resolved areas, the survey is close to completion in three. We have asked the Survey of India to complete the actual demarcation in all these revolved areas by December 31,” he added.

Both Mr Sarma and Mr Sangma will be visiting disputed border areas like Psiar and Khanduli after Durga Puja.

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