Guwahati, Aug 21 IANS | 3 months ago

Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju Thursday said a joint mechanism would be worked out soon to defuse prevailing tension along the border between Assam and Nagaland.

Rijiju, who held a meeting here with Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and Nagaland Chief Minister T. R. Zeliang, told media that the central government would extend all possible support to both the state governments.

"We want early restoration of peace and tranquility in the violence-affected areas. The central government would extend all possible help towards this end," he said.

The Assam chief minister and Nagaland chief minister said both the states have agreed to resolve the long pending border issues by setting up a joint mechanism.

They said both the states would continue with the efforts to resolve the border issues from the chief secretary-level down to the deputy commissioner-level.

Gogoi said the first priority was to restore peace and tranquility and to send back the displaced people to their respective homes.

"We have built up our efforts to instill confidence among the affected people and to restore normalcy in the trouble-torn areas along the inter-state border," he added.

Zeliang said both the sides are in constant touch with each after the Aug 12 incident and talks are going on both at the political and administrative level.

"We will continue with our dialogue at all levels to resolve the long pending border issues and to contain the situation," he said.

Underscoring the need for people-to-people contact at the local level, Rijiju said such efforts would remove misgivings and help to build bridges of understanding between the people living along the inter-state border.

"People-to-people contact would remove the lack of confidence at the ground level. Frequent meetings would help to bring about better understanding," he said.

Rijiju said the coming together of both the states has sent out a clear signal that they want to resolve the problems across the table.

"The decision to form a joint mechanism to resolve the border issues is a step in the right direction," he said. He appreciated the stand of both the governments to provide adequate compensation to the displaced people.

Rijiju appealed to the agitators not to resort to economic blockade causing inconvenience and hardship to the people of neighbouring state.

Besides, he cautioned everyone to remain vigil so that no anti-social elements could take advantage of the situation and add fuel to fire.

Meanwhile, Zeliang pointed that his government has already constituted an inquiry committee to go into the entire incident to arrive at the truth. He said his government has apprehended 15 people, who were allegedly involved in the incident.

Zeliang appreciated the efforts taken by his Assam counterpart to bring the situation under control.

Both the chief ministers assured that they would ensure the security of the people of both the neighbouring states from threat and intimidation.

Gogoi and Zeliang appealed to the protestors to calm down and to help the administration in restoring peace and tranquility in the affected areas.

They said they are one in their opinion that the CRPF must be vested with more powers to deal with any exigency effectively.

Violence erupted along the Sector B of Assam-Nagaland border last week that killed nine persons and left over 10,000 people homeless on the Assam side of the border.

(Posted on 21-08-2014)

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