Nagas Target Assamese People as Assam-Nagaland Border Dispute Continues since 1960s

Reported by

Ashmita Bhattacharya

Legal Data by

Edited by

Updated by

Published on

September 16, 2016

September 16, 2016

Updated on

September 16, 2016

Location of Conflict

Sivsagar

Jorhat, Golaghat, Uriamghat and Karbi Anglong

Golaghat

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Border Dispute

Border Dispute

(

)

People Affected by Conflict

3744

Households Affected by Conflict

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

66000

ha

Starting Year

State

Assam

Sector

Land Use

The conflict between Assam and Nagaland mostly relates to land encroachment. During the creation of Nagaland in 1963, an agreement was signed by the Naga People's Committee and the then Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru. Some of the clauses in the agreement on land transfer to Nagaland remain unimplemented to date and have become the underlying cause of conflict between the two states. Assam and Nagaland share a 434kilometre border. In other words, about 66,000 hectares of land are disputed. This interstate border is divided into six sectors A, B, C, D, E and F. These sectors include Sivsagar, Golaghat, Jorhat and Karbi Anglong districts, all of which presently lie in Assam. Nagaland claims that sectors A, B, C and D belong to the Naga tribes and should not be a part of Assam. During the colonial rule, the British government made these sectors a part of Assam for administrative convenience; these were supposed to be transferred to Nagaland after its creation. But till date, no such transfer has been made. The Assam government claims that since there has been no direction from the Centre in this regard, it shall not take steps to carve out the districts demanded by Nagaland. This decadesold dispute has given rise to violent incidents over the years, leading to mass killings and displacement, and remains a constant cause of concern between the two states. Two violent incidents in 1979 and 1985 resulted in over 100 fatalities. On January 5, 1979, armed men from Nagaland killed 54 Assamese people in a series of attacks on villages in Golaghat district. Over 23,500 people had to be accommodated in relief camps at the time. In June 1985, over 41 people in Assam were murdered, including 28 Assam police personnel at Merapani, also in Golaghat. Several rounds of talks have been held between the two states to settle this dispute, but these have not led to any solution to date. On August 11, 2014, Assamese people staged a protest outside a Central Reserve Police Force camp, demanding the release of two school students allegedly abducted by Naga insurgents. Following this, violence erupted as the All Adivasi National Liberation Army raided two villages along the AssamNagaland border – Ronsuyan and Chandalashung – beating up people and destroying property. This led to an exodus of over 10,000 people, who were moved to 14 relief camps in Uriamghat in Golaghat. In the aftermath of this violence, the Assam government moved the Supreme Court. The dispute is being mediated by the Boundary Commission set up under the direction of the court. In September 2020, after six years, the governments of the two states held a highlevel meeting towards settling the border dispute. The Assam government proposed joint patrolling by police personnel of both the States with Central forces along the interstate border. The Nagaland government accepted the proposal in principle, said Assams Chief Secretary Kumar Sanjay Krishna after a meeting with his Nagaland counterpart Temjen Toy. However, in November 2020, the issue escalated after organisations in Assam accused Nagaland of setting up a police camp inside Dissoi Valley Reserve Forest and deployed armed Assam police in the area and also erected a temporary camp near the disputed area. The situation was brought under control but the states are still awaiting orders of the apex court.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

No items found.

Other Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Settling border dispute

Region Classification

Rural

Type of Land

Both

Type of Common Land

Forest and Non-Forest

Total investment involved (in Crores):

Type of investment:

Year of Estimation

Page Number In Investment Document:

Has the Conflict Ended?

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Forest and Scheduled Area Governance Laws

Legislations/Policies Involved

Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980
Section 3: Restriction on usage of forestland for non-forest purposes
16 Point Agreement between the Government of India and the Naga People’s Convention, dated July 26, 1960
Provision 7: Nothing relating to transfer of land shall be effected without the majority vote of the Nagaland Legislative Assembly
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    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

Whether claims/objections were made as per procedure in the relevant statute

What was the claim(s)/objection(s) raised by the community?

What was the Decision of the Concerned Government Department?

Legal Processes and Loopholes Enabling the Conflict:

Forced evictions/dispossession of land

Legal Status:

In Court

Status of Case In Court

Pending

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

Supreme Court of India

Case Number

Original Suit No. 2/1988

Main Reasoning/Decision of court

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

Killing

Displacement

Whether criminal law was used against protestors:

Reported Details of the Violation:

On January 5, 1979, armed men from Nagaland killed 54 Assamese people in a series of attacks on villages in Golaghat district. Over 23,500 people had to be accommodated in relief camps at the time. In June 1985, over 41 people in Assam were murdered, including 28 Assam police personnel at Merapani, also in Golaghat.

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Nature of Protest

Property damage/arson

Armed protests

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Government of Assam, Government of Nagaland

PSUs Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Government Authorities for Comments?

Name, Designation and Comment of the Government Authorities Approached

Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Communities/Local Organisations in the Conflict:

National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-IM)

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
  • Documents Related to the Conflict:
  • Links Related to the Conflict:

Image Credit:  

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Documented By

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Reviewed By

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Updated By

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