Tension continued along the Assam-Arunachal Pradesh border as miscreants burnt two houses in trouble-torn Charaipung area here last night even as the NSCN-IM denied any involvement in the violence.
Two houses of one Ghanakanta Gogoi, a small tea grower, were set ablaze at Charaipung where tension prevailed
since August 14 following attacks, firing and burning down of houses by Arunachali miscreants allegedly aided by NSCN-IM insurgents, officials said.
Denying involvement in the border violence, NSCN-IM said it was under ceasefire and involved in peace talks,
although they have camps nearby.
"When we have rocket launchers, AK-56 and mortars why should we be involved in petty incidents of house burning," a
NSCN cadre said.
Assam Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma after visiting the disputed area told PTI that in 1967 then NEFA
(now Arunachal Pradesh) was a part of Assam. The then chief minister Bimala Prasad Chaliha had allowed Wangso Nagas from
NEFA to cultivate 'paan' (betel leaf) in Charaipung area.
But with time and after the creation of Arunachal Pradesh, the people there crossed over the inter-state border
at Teok river six km into Assam, Sarma said.
Due to infrastructure facilities provided by the neighbouring government, the people claimed that they were
Arunachalis, he said adding that Assam's population in the area has to be increased and development brought about there.
A joint peace committee meeting between the two states in the area yesterday appealed to the people not to escalate
the border conflict and the media to desist from sensationalising the situation.
Assam IGP Law and Order Bhaskarjyoti Mahanta, camping at Charaipung, said cooperation, joint vigil and interaction
between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh could control the situation.
Asserting there was no necessity for deployment of neutral forces like CRPF in the area, Mahanta said, Assam
Police was capable of protecting the area and its people.