All vehicles entering Assam from Mizoram will be checked for "illicit drugs", the Assam government said in a notification Thursday, days after six men of the Assam Police were killed in an unprecedented gunfight between the two police forces.
The statement follows earlier advisory, also issued on Thursday, where the Assam government advised its people not to travel to Mizoram as any threat to their personal safety cannot be accepted.
Justifying its move to check vehicles from Mizoram, the Assam government said that within a span of two months, 912 cases have been registered and 1,560 persons arrested and huge quantities of illicit drugs confiscated.
A tweet by a senior Assam Police official, GP Singh, said the government was continuing its "offensive against drug cartels operating from Mizoram and beyond". Mr Singh urged people to cooperate in the interest of the "Gennext of our country".
"During the drive against illlicit drugs, it has been observed that most of the drugs were routed through Assam via Mizoram from across the border," said the Assam order, adding this "trafficking of illicit drugs via Mizoram causes great concern and threat to society".
Continuing our offensive against drug cartels operating from Mizoram and beyond, we've decided to up the ante. Request people to cooperate in the interest of Gennext of our country. @assampolice pic.twitter.com/AQ0JCpJ1Cj— GP Singh (@gpsinghips) July 29, 2021
"In order to check trafficking of illicit drugs, it is felt necessary to check all vehicles entering into Assam from Mizoram. Such vehicles will be thoroughly checked by personnel of Assam Police at the point of entry at all Assam-Mizoram borders," said the order.
The vehicles, it said, will be released only after the officer concerned is satisfied that no drugs were carried in them.
Many social media users from the hill state have hit out claiming the move is intended for harassment of Mizoram residents who can access the rest of the country by road only through Assam.
Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga tweeted today sharing a government notification, issued a day before Assam's travel advisory, underscoring that there will be no restrictions on non-residents of Mizoram traveling through the state's Kolasib district, which borders Assam's Cachar district. He also underscored that "north east India will always be one".
The Assam-Mizoram border violence had started on Monday afternoon at the Inner Line Reserve Forest area of Cachar district. Later, each state had accused the local police of the other of intrusion and opening fire without provocation.
This week's clashes stem from a decades old land dispute between the two states over "improper demarcation of the state border".
Tension along the inter-state border in Cachar and Hailakandi districts has been escalating since October last year, with frequent incidents of burning of houses and encroachment of land.