Mizoram CM stands firm against border fencing with Myanmar

Mizoram’s Chief Minister, Lalduhoma, reiterated the state’s stance on Saturday, emphasising that Mizoram should be excluded if the Centre proceeds with fencing the 1,643km border with Myanmar. This...

Mizoram’s Chief Minister, Lalduhoma, reiterated the state’s stance on Saturday, emphasising that Mizoram should be excluded if the Centre proceeds with fencing the 1,643km border with Myanmar. This declaration follows a decision by the state’s influential NGO Coordination Committee (NGOCC) to proceed with a planned protest on February 21 against the proposed fencing and termination of the Free Movement Regime (FMR) between the two nations.

The FMR currently permits residents on both sides to move up to 16km within either country without requiring official documentation. Lalduhoma voiced the state government’s opposition to erecting a fence along the 510km-long Mizoram-Myanmar border, advocating for the retention of the FMR. He highlighted the historical imposition of the present border by the British, citing it as part of their divide-and-rule policy that aimed to prevent the formation of a larger nation. Lalduhoma expressed the enduring aspiration for reunification under a single administrative unit during discussions with an NGOCC delegation, led by chairman Lalhmachhuana.

The Chief Minister disclosed recent meetings with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah, where he communicated the state’s position. Lalduhoma urged Shah, who had previously announced the fencing plan, to refrain from constructing a fence on the Mizoram side, even if the Manipur section of the border undergoes fencing. Following his engagements in Delhi, Lalduhoma conveyed confidence to NGOCC leaders, stating, “In view of the responses I received in Delhi, I feel we have nothing to worry about.”

As opposition to the fencing intensifies, leaders of prominent tribal organizations from Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, and Assam, including the governing Nationalist Democratic Party (NDP), convened in Dimapur on Friday to advocate for a reconsideration of the decision. The gathering in the Nagaland town saw participation from various political parties, including the NDP.

 

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