By Devabrata Dutta
GUWAHATI: The Tipraha Indigenous Progressive Regional Alliance (TIPRA) chief Pradyot Bikram Manikya DebBarma reacting to the long-standing Assam-Mizoram border dispute that took a bloody turn on Monday said that the aggressive nationalism showed at the Centre has influenced the other states to follow the same path.
“The incident between Assam and Mizoram is extremely unfortunate and it has put the entire Northeast in a poor light that there is no unity within the northeast,” said Tripura royal scion Pradyot Manikya, speaking with InsideNE.
Pradyot Manikya added, “Mizoram has a border dispute with Tripura also. Assam has border conflicts with Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh too. It was quite unfortunate to see police personnel, civilians dying. This is not the time to support one state over another but to resolve these border issues among the Northeastern states through amicable dialogues.”
Notably, the violence between the two states had occurred less than 24 hours after Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s departure from the Northeast after chairing a meeting with all the northeastern CMs and chief secretaries on border disputes in Shillong on Saturday. Congress MP Gaurav Gogoi has termed Shah’s visit as a “complete failure” and “merely a photo-op” following the violence.
Asked about the Central leadership’s role in this regard, Pradyot Manikya opined, “Aggressive postures have always led to violence. Whether it was the aggressive posture of the central government in regard to CAA or whether it was the aggressive posture of both the states’ police.”
“When we saw aggressive nationalism there was no dialogue and the Centre pushed in their views whether it was CAA or certain other laws which have been passed. It was just the deadliest of fundamental guidelines for other states to follow the same path. When that happens, there is bound to be discontent within neighbours,” added Manikya.
While Bharatiya Janata Party has held power in Assam for two consecutive terms, the Mizo National Front (MNF), which came into power in 2018 dethroning Mizoram’s longest-serving Congress chief minister Lal Thanhawla, is also a part of BJP’s regional forum North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA).
Worth mentioning that current Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma is the chief convenor of NEDA and played a major role in helping BJP establish base in the Northeastern region of India once known to be a Congress fortress.
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