GUWAHATI: “The boundary dispute with Meghalaya will be resolved soon,” Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma told reporters in Jorhat, on the sidelines of a function at Jorhat Engineering College (JEC) on Sunday.

The chief minister’s statement came five days after a joint press conference of Sarma’s meeting with Meghalaya counterpart Conrad K Sangma on November 16. Both the chief ministers also visited Lampih in Meghalaya’s West Khasi Hills district bordering Assam’s Kamrup district and told the media that both the states will resolve disputes in six places out of 12 disputed areas.

Sarma said after Meghalaya the Assam government will start talking with other north-eastern states to resolve the border row.

“It is not an easy task, it is a 75-year-old issue. But we are going ahead gradually,” Sarma said.

Sarma on Sunday met his Nagaland counterpart Neiphiu Rio at the Jorhat circuit House.

“We the chief ministers of north-eastern states often meet and talk. There is nothing specific in our discussion. As the same NDA governments are in power in all the states, we often meet and talk on political issues. Rio wanted me to meet in Guwahati. But I called him to Jorhat,” Sarma said.

“It is nothing special, we often meet and talk,” he further said.

Regarding the eviction notice served by the Assam forest department to Arunachal villagers, the chief minister said, “It is not like that. Assam has a standpoint on the border and similarly, they have also. But we resolve all issues in the table of talks,” he added.

However, the meeting between Sarma and Rio was mysterious. None of them disclosed what exactly was discussed.

“Glad to have met HCM Nagaland Sri @Neiphiu_Rio at Jorhat today, along with MP Sri @KamakhyaTasa. Discussed several issues of mutual interest in order to strengthen the age-old ties & bonhomie b/w two states. We strive towards building an ever united & stronger #Northeast,” the Assam chief minister tweeted.

Earlier on July 31, the chief secretaries of Assam and Nagaland signed an agreement to de-escalate the tense situation prevailing at two locations in the Dessoi valley forest/ Tsurangkong valley by simultaneously withdrawing security forces within the next 24 hours.

Both sides agreed that in order to maintain peace and tranquility in the areas around Ao Senden village and Vikuto village as they are known in Nagaland and called as Jankhona Nala / Nagajankha and Compartment No. 12 respectively in Assam, urgent and effective steps are required for defusing the standoff between the security forces of Nagaland and Assam.

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