Assam-Meghalaya Border Dispute: Relevance
- GS 3: Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.
Assam-Meghalaya Border Dispute: Context
- Union Home Minister is expected to seal the final agreement to end the dispute in six areas of the Assam-Meghalaya boundary ahead of Meghalaya’s 50th Statehood Day celebration on January 21.
About Asaam Meghalaya dispute
- Meghalaya was carved out of Assam under the Assam Reorganisation Act, 1971.
- The Act was not accepted unanimously and people challenged its provision, thus leading to conflict.
- Since the early 1970s, both states have made contesting claims on the actual demarcation of the village.
- Assam and Meghalaya share an 885-km-long border. As of now, there are 12 points of dispute along their borders.
- The Assam-Meghalaya border dispute are the areas of Upper Tarabari, Gazang reserve forest, Hahim, Langpih, Borduar, Boklapara, Nongwah, Matamur, Khanapara-Pilangkata, Deshdemoreah Block I and Block II, Khanduli and Retacherra.
- A major point of contention between Assam and Meghalaya is the district of Langpih in West Garo Hills that borders the Kamrup district of Assam.
- Langpih was part of the Kamrup district during the British colonial period, but post-Independence, it became part of the Garo Hills and Meghalaya.
- Assam considers it to be part of the Mikir Hills in Assam. Meghalaya has questioned Blocks I and II of the Mikir Hills -now Karbi Anglong region – being part of Assam.
- According to Meghalaya, these were parts of erstwhile United Khasi and Jaintia Hills districts.
Assam Meghalaya Border: Ending the dispute
- Among the 12 dispute points, six had been selected for resolution in the first phase.
- The six areas include: Tarabari, Gijang, Hahim, Baklapara, Khanapara-Pilingkata and Ratacherra.
- Assam and Meghalaya had formed three regional committees each to inspect the disputed areas and record the views of the local residents.
Assam and border issues
- The states in the North-eastern region of India were largely carved out of Assam, which has border disputes with several states.
- Assam’s border disputes with Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland are already pending in the Supreme Court.
- Assam’s border disputes with Meghalaya and Mizoram are currently in the phase of resolution through negotiations.