Assam-Meghalaya border disputeDate: 31 March 2022 Tags: Miscellaneous
To resolve their 50-year old border dispute, the Assam government and Meghalaya government have signed an agreement.
The border disputes have been in existence since colonial times when Meghalaya was part of Assam.
The dispute started when Meghalaya was carved as a separate state in 1972. The Assam Reorganisation Act, 1971 was challenged by Meghalaya due to12 contentious locations.
Upper Tarabari, Gazang reserve forest, Hahim, Boklapara, Langpih, Borduar, Nongwah, Matamur, Khanapara-Pilangkata, Deshdemoreah Block I and Block II, Khanduli and Retacherra are the disputed locations.
Langpih in West Garo Hills bordering the Kamrup district of Assam is one of the disputed areas. It later became part of the Garo Hills and Meghalaya.
Meghalaya has questioned Blocks I and II of the Mikir Hills present in Karbi Anglong district. It claims to be part of erstwhile United Khasi and Jaintia Hills districts.
Efforts for resolving
Border dispute settlement committees were formed by the two states to resolve the border disputes in a phased manner.
The factors that were considered for dispute settlement were historical facts, ethnicity, administrative convenience, mood and sentiments of the people and the contiguity of the land.
The recent agreement
In the latest agreement, six areas with relatively less critical differences were taken up and resolved.
They are Tarabari, Gijang, Hahim, Baklapara, Khanapara-Pilingkata and Ratacherra.
These areas are located in Cachar, Kamrup Metro and Kamrup Rural on Assam's side and West Khasi Hills, Ri Bhoi district and East Jaintia Hills on Meghalaya's side.
With the signing, about 70 percent of the dispute has been resolved. Assam will get full control of 18.51 sq km and Meghalaya 18.28 sq km of the area in first phase.
Other border disputes
Assam’s disputes with Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland are pending in the Supreme Court. Dispute with Mizoram is under resolution.