The commissions set up to resolve the decades-old border dispute between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh began visiting the border areas days after the top leaders of the two states signed a declaration to set up 12 commissions. The visits will continue until August 31 before submitting their report on September 15.
The Council of Ministers of the two states lead the councils. Arunachal Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein and Assam Chief Minister Atul Bora held a meeting on Monday. They also visited the disputed areas of Arunachal Pradesh in Namsai and Tinsukia in Assam.
In Assam’s Balipara, the boards of Assam Chief Minister Pijush Hazarika and his Arunachal Pradesh counterpart Mama Natung held talks. They visited Assam’s Biswanath and Sonitpur areas and Arunachal Pradesh’s Pakke Kessang.
“We visited the border areas and heard the views of the residents. Based on their input and other factors, we will soon submit our reports which will help resolve the issue,” said Bora.
Mein said that the process of resolving border disputes in the region through talks has started on the instructions of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah. He hoped that their dispute would be resolved amicably.
In July, the two regions signed the Namsai Declaration and agreed to reduce the number of disputed villages from 123 to 86 and that regional committees submit their first report on September 15.
The committees are mandated to look at aspects such as geographical proximity, administrative suitability, residents’ opinions on the region they want to live in, etc.
The heads of the regional administrations will have a discussion when the committees submit their reports. The talks are expected to end with an agreement on the border reform, which will then be sent to the Center for approval.
Assam and Arunachal Pradesh share a border of 804 km. Last year, the two governments agreed to settle the dispute out of court through dialogue.
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