Langpih is a disputed territory between Assam and Meghalaya government and this dispute has been going on for several years Credit: Twitter

Shillong: Amid the tension prevailing at the Meghalaya-Assam border, home minister Lahkmen Rymbui on Monday appealed both the states for peace and to avoid escalating and creating unnecessary tension in the area.

On February 19, locals at Umwali came face to face with the Assam Police after the police had tried to set up a police camp in a land belonging to a resident of Meghalaya. To which the locals at Umwali in Langpih protested against the Assam Police’s attempt to set up the camp.

Rymbui said, “I request both sides to not escalate or create unnecessary tension and also request that better sense prevails and status quo is maintained and whatever is to be done is to be done democratically.”

According to reports, Assam Police reportedly arrived with personnel of 11th Gorkha Regiment and Central Armed Para Military Force (CAPF) at Umwali in Langpih West Khasi Hills bordering Assam.

Asked about his comments on the issue, the State home minister, Rymbui said, “I cannot comment on what Assam government is doing within their state. I can only say that we will ensure that law and order prevail in that particular area and that status quo should be maintained”.

When asked if Meghalaya will also tighten their security Rymbui said, “We are living in a democratic society and no state has the right to infringe upon the right of the people and have no right to fight against the unarmed people and if there is anything like that it is condemnable and let us hope it is not. We will take all necessary measures to see that our people are safe.”

Rymbui informed that there has been no official communication from Assam concerning the deployment of personnel at the bordering area and on the development at Umwali.

Terming the development as a normal duty, Rymbui said that as per an unofficial version since AFSPA is still operational in Assam the armed forces are doing their normal duty in that particular area. How far this is true that also still has to be verified.

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“Checking all information is our duty but concerning whatever they do in the boundary of the state of Assam is not my lookout. My lookout is that peace prevails in our side of the state and requests all to work out resolve this matter once and for all,” added Rymbui.

Meanwhile, MLA and MDC of Rambrai Jyrngam Kimfa Marbaniang said that there was no need for Assam to deploy Gorkha Regiment or CAPF. And that it can be resolved through the deputy commissioner and the Director General of Police.

“I think that Assam police is trying to create a fear psychosis among the people of our state. Because by showing the strength they want to prove that they are stronger or their territory belongs to them, which in fact is not true,” said Marbaniang.

He added that the border issue will continue if not solved and the need to maintain the status quo by both the states in order to maintain peace and order on both sides. He also felt that the chief minister of both the states should sit and resolve this issue.

Marbaniang informed that they will be writing to the chief minister, home minister and the union minister- both the defense and home minister.

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