Tension prevailed in Moojem village along the Meghalaya-Assam border due to land encroachment.
The dispute between residents of both the states has occurred due to an alleged illegal encroachment of plantation at Pdeiñ Iawmuksoo.
As per reports, residents of Moothade Karbi have encroached land by planting areca nuts and broom grass and residents of Moojem reacted by destroying them on April 15.
While a FIR was lodged at Jrikyndeng police station by the residents of Moothade on the incident, Moojem village said the plantation is well within their area and documents are available.
According to waheh shnong of Moojem, H. Raksaw the village granted them the land to cultivate but with time they have claimed ownership and constructed houses. He said residents of both the states had also entered into an agreement not to plant broom grass or any other perennial plants.
Leaders of the village with the Hynñiewtrep Border Dispute Redressal Forum, Chnong Mowjem (HBDRF) today met West Jaiñtia Hills Deputy Commissioner to apprise him of the situation.
According to the waheh chnong land encroachment took place since 2018 and both villages have settled matters peacefully.
Since the area falls under the disputed Block-I, the villagers are hopeful that the governments of both states will work towards a permanent solution to the border dispute, bringing an end to the ongoing tensions.
HBDRF chairman, C. Sungoh said that a meeting to settle issues has been scheduled on April 19 between the district administrations of both the states and also the Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council at Jowai.
Meanwhile, members of the Khasi Students Union (KSU), West Jaiñtia Hills unit led by general secretary Leningrad Tariang visited Moojem today and interacted with the villagers there.
Tariang said the plantation at Pdeiñ Iawmuksoo was provided to the people of Moothade Karbi by Moojem for farming but slowly they started planting bamboos and broom grass and even constructed homes there.
“Moojem has documents to stake claim because that land was not permanently given to the Karbis but for them to cultivate. Yet they started claiming ownership by planting perennial plants and constructing houses,” he said.
Second phase border talks likely in May
The second phase of boundary talks between Meghalaya and Assam to resolve the border dispute in the six remaining areas of differences will begin next month.
“We will try to initiate the first round of discussion or continue the next round of discussion of border talks. Let the time come, I expect that maybe in the month of May we will be able to see the next phase (of border talks),” Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma told reporters today.
Regional committees comprising ministers and MLAs for six areas in Ri-Bhoi, West Khasi Hills and Jaintia Hills districts have been appointed to take the second phase of border talks forward.
For Ri-Bhoi, the regional committee is headed by Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong while the members include MLAs Sosthenes Sohtun, Mayralborn syiem, Damanbait Lamare, Charles Marngar, KHADC MDC Jambor War. The Deputy Commissioner of Ri-Bhoi is the member convener.
Cabinet minister Paul Lyngdoh will be the chairperson of the West Khasi Hills regional committee while the members include MLAs Renikton Tongkhar, Methodius Dkhar, Remington Gabil Momin, KHADC MDCs Gigur Myrthong and Bajop Pyngrope. The West Khasi Hills Deputy Commissioner is the member convener.
Deputy Chief Minister Sniawbhalang Dhar will head the regional committee of West Jaintia Hills and the members are MLAs Comingone Ymbon, Lahkmen Rymbui, Nujorki Sungoh, JHADC Chief Executive Member Thombor Shiwat and MDC Aiborlang Shadap. The Deputy Commissioner of West Jaintia Hills is the member convener.
The remaining six disputed border areas between the two north-eastern states are in Block-I in West Jaintia Hills district, Block-II in Ri-Bhoi and Langpih in West Khasi Hills.
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