A week after Mizoram demanded Tripura to withdraw security forces deployed at Phuldungsei village, which Mizoram claims to be part of its territory, Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb has asked Mizoram to resolve the issue by approaching the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).
“The inter-state boundary is identified by map available with the government and any objection can be taken up with the centre for resolution. If they feel the border should be re-demarcated, they can approach the MHA,” said the Chief Minister.
Deb said even though Tripura didn’t do anything on the issue, they have chosen to resolve the matter officially and appealed everyone to abstain from violating the last officially mapped border.
“In our federal system, MHA resolves any inter-state boundary issues. Boundaries of Tripura-Mizoram or Tripura-Assam boundary can be resolved by them alone. If they have objection on this issue, they should place it before MHA. In our federal system, fighting amongst ourselves about inter-state boundary is not done”, Deb said.
The standoff over Phuldungsei village, located 200 Km from Agartala, started in August this year after a report of the local administration found 130 people living at Phuldungsei were registered in electoral rolls, ration cards and other public welfare benefit schemes of both Tripura and Mizoram. Later, Mizoram claimed Phuldungsei and adjoining parts, which they call Thaidawr Tlang, are parts of Mizoram.
The tension piqued after an announcement by SONGRONGMA, a local tribal organisation, which said it would construct a Shiv Mandir and do community activities in the area on October 19 and 20. Mizoram opposed this, and issued prohibitory orders in the village. The prohibitory order was contested by Tripura on grounds of administrative command. Subsequently, after dialogue, the temple construction and the prohibitory order were both cancelled.
However, a letter from Mizoram Home Secretary Lalbiakangi to Tripura Home Secretary B K Sahu on October 28 reiterated that Thaidawr Tlang is part of Mizoram and demanded to remove deployment of a contingent of about 100 Tripura State Rifles (TSR) personnel stationed at the peak of Thaidawr Tlang and new constructions made to accommodate them.
On the issue, CM Biplab Kumar Deb has declined to reply the letter and said, “We shall reply if the letter has correct content in it. Or else, why should we reply and create disturbance between people of two neighbouring states”.
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