Recently, Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu and his Assam counterpart Himanta Biswa Sarma inked a pact to end the decades-old border dispute between the two states, and they agreed in principle on restricting the number of contested villages to 86 instead of 123. Chief ministers of the two North-eastern neighbours announced in separate tweets that they met at Namsai in Arunachal Pradesh and signed the agreement.

“We have decided to restrict the ‘disputed villages’ to 86 instead of 123. Based on our present boundary, we’ll try to resolve the rest by September 15, 2022,” Mr Sarma tweeted after the meeting at Namsai in Arunachal Pradesh. Mr Khandu also announced about the agreement through a tweet.

Earlier the two leaders had met on January 24, and again on April 20 during which it was decided that all border issues between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh will be confined to those raised before the Local Commission in 2007. Calling it “Namsai declaration”, as the meeting was held at Namasai in Arunachal Pradesh, Mr Sarma said that both the states have decided to find an amicable solution to the seven decades old border dispute within this year.

Attributing this development to the effort of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union home minister Amit Shah, both the chief ministers lauded the top leadership for guiding them to achieve this landmark move in resolving the long-pending border dispute.Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu called the meeting historic and said that this is the third meeting between the chief ministers of the two states. He reiterated that the border issue between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh is seven decades old. “The vexed issue of the Arunachal-Assam border dispute has been lingering for more than seven decades, but now we are keen to resolve the dispute. We should be able to do it by this year,” said Mr Khandu.

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