Protection site

ZPM urges Mizoram government to protect farmers near Assam border

In a statement, the party said that many broom farmers in the Aitlang region are facing an acute crisis because their farmlands are still “occupied” by the police in Assam.

On January 10, Mizoram’s main opposition party, the Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM), urged the state government to protect broom growers to ensure they reap their harvest.

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In a statement, the party said that many broom farmers in the Aitlang area near Vairengte, a disputed land along the state’s border with Assam, are facing an acute crisis as their land farmers are still “occupied” by the police in Assam.

Farmers will not be able to harvest their produce unless security is provided to them, he said.

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There are more than 18 farmers in the Aitlang area and Assam police have camped there face to face with Mizoram police since June last year, he added.

ZPM also alleged that areca nut growers in Saihapui ‘V’ village, one of the disputed areas in Kolasib district, were not allowed to collect their harvest by police in Assam.

He alleged that Assam police personnel were picking betel nuts from these farms by hiring laborers.

He called on the government to protect farmers so that they can freely harvest their products.

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Mizoram shares a 164.6 km long interstate border with Assam. The border dispute between the two northeastern states is a long-standing issue, stemming from two colonial demarcations in 1875 and 1933.

The border dispute took a gruesome turn on July 26 last year when police forces from both states engaged in a shootout in the disputed area near the village of Vairengte, resulting in the deaths of six police officers and a civilian of Assam.