The Mizoram Police on Friday filed a First Information Report against Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, four police officers and two bureaucrats on charges of attempt to murder and criminal conspiracy in connection with the clashes at the inter-state border on July 26, reported NDTV. Around 200 unidentified police personnel have been booked in the case too.
The case was filed at Vairengte police station in Kolasib district of Mizoram. The Kolasib district, which borders Assam’s Cachar district, was the flashpoint of Monday’s skirmishes.
During the clashes on Monday, five Assam Police officers lost their lives. While no casualties were suffered by Mizoram, the state government claimed that around 200 Assam Police personnel had crossed a duty post manned by the Central Reserve Police Force and state police in Vairengte town of Mizoram’s Kolasib district.
In the FIR, the Mizoram Police have accused “200 fully armed” Assam Police personnel of attempting to “forcefully occupy” their police camp. They called it an encroachment of reserve forest.
“The Mizoram Police were outnumbered and their actions to defend their camp were in vain,” read the FIR, according to India Today.
They added that the Kolasib superintendent of police tried to have an “amicable dialogue” with their Assam counterparts. “…but they were not ready to listen to sane argument and instead forcefully informed SP Kolasib that the area falls within Assam territory and they intended to construct a camp as per the instruction of Chief Minister, Assam himself,” the FIR stated.
The FIR came after the Assam Police issued summons to six senior officials in Mizoram and a legislator, reported NDTV. The police even visited the house of Mizo National Front MP K Vanlalvena in Delhi to serve the summons.
Assam and Mizoram share a 164.6-km-long border, which has long been a cause of dispute. Three districts in the south of Assam – Cachar, Hailakandi and Karimganj – share the border with Mizoram’s Kolasib, Mamit and Aizawl districts.
The states have sparred over it, sometimes violently. Several rounds of dialogue since 1994 have failed to resolve the disagreement.
On Thursday, Assam issued a travel advisory asking people from the state not to go to Mizoram due to the border tensions. In a separate order, the Assam Police said that they would inspect vehicles coming from Mizoram at the border entry points with the state to check trafficking of illegal drugs.
Following Monday’s clashes, the two states, at a meeting chaired by Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla on Wednesday, agreed to the deployment of Central Armed Police Forces in the areas prone to conflict along the state border and National Highway 306. Both the states also decided to withdraw all their police officers from the disputed site where the clashes occurred.
Now, the Central Reserve Police Force has increased its deployment in these regions. A total of 500 personnel have started patrolling National Highway 306 between the two states. Two more companies are on standby.