Kohima: Nagaland government has mooted the idea of reviewing the 1972 border agreement with Assam and also constituting a joint coordination committee of all North Eastern tribal states to resolve border disputes.

“There is a need to review the 1972 agreement between Assam and Nagaland,” newly inducted Parliamentary Secretary for Border Affairs, N Thomas Lotha said.

He said the ‘one-sided agreement’ had become a tool for the Assam government to strengthen their forces along the border while Nagaland was relegated to a ‘helpless position’, Lotha told mediapersons yesterday in Dimapur.

He said there was no logic in deploying neutral forces like CRPF manning border areas as they were acting directly under command of an IGP of the Assam Police.

As the pact was not acceptable to Nagas, he said, “A fresh agreement acceptable to both Assam and Nagaland should be inked to settle border disputes. Then there would be no need for neutral forces to man the border areas.”

Stating that the border issue was not only confined to Assam and Nagaland only but also with other tribal states bordering Assam, he said there was a need to discuss and take the “common border issue” to a higher level.

The parliamentary secretary said his department would invite the opinions of other tribal states bordering Assam.

He stressed on the need for a joint coordination committee with all North East tribal states to resolve border disputes, especially with Assam.

Lotha said a coordination meeting involving the district administration, Forest department and Land Revenue department along with village councils of border areas would be convened to chalk out strategies to protect the interest of the state’s border.

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