The Chief Ministers of Assam and Meghalaya held a second round of meeting on Wednesday to resolve the interstate dispute in the remaining six areas along the 884.9 km border of the two northeastern states.
Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and his Meghalaya counterpart Conrad K. Sangma had signed a Memorandum of Understanding on March 29 last year in the presence of Union Home Minister Amit Shah “resolving” six of the 12 disputed areas in the first phase.
Sarma and Sangma accompanied by their ministerial colleagues and senior officials in a meeting in Guwahati on Wednesday decided to initiate the process to resolve the interstate border disputes in the remaining six areas.
After the meeting, the Assam Chief Minister said that in the last part of June the Chief Ministers of both states would visit Karbi Anglong and West Jaintia Hills districts, where some unrest is going on, as a goodwill gesture.
“The regional committees of the two states would visit all the six disputed areas and would talk to the bordering people and all the stakeholders before submitting their reports to the respective Chief Ministers,” he said, adding that the states would work with the spirit of long existing friendship between Meghalaya and Assam to resolve the area of differences.
Sarma said that the meeting did not fix a time frame or period to resolve the disputes as the situation in the remaining six disputed areas was complicated. The territories of Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council fall along the six disputed areas and the opinion of the council is very vital in this regard.
Meghalaya Chief Minister said that through the process of discussions, mutual trust and confidence would be able to resolve the differences in the remaining six areas.
“In the month of July, I and Assam Chief Minister along with other ministers and officials would meet again to review the progress of the initiatives,” Sangma told the media, adding that with the support of the Central government and various other agencies the two states would be able to move forward to resolve the disputes along the borders.
He said: “At the same time, we have asked the Survey of India to continue with their survey work in the six areas of differences and complete their surveys.”
Assam Ministers Atul Bora and Pijush Hazarika and Meghalaya Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong and Minister Snaiwbhalang Dhar, Chief Secretaries of the two states and senior officials attended the meeting.
Assam Chief Minister and his Arunachal Pradesh counterpart, Pema Khandu last month in the presence of Union Home Minister Amit Shah signed an agreement in New Delhi to settle the long-pending disputes along their over 800 km inter-state border.