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Meghalaya has multi-pronged approach: Guv

By The Assam Tribune

SHILLONG, Jan 26 (IANS): Meghalaya Governor V. Shanmuganathan on Tuesday said the government has adopted a multi-pronged approach to address the root cause of militancy in the state.

"The government has kept its door open for talks with the militant outfits provided they eschew the path of violence," he said addressing the Republic Day celebrations at Polo Grounds here.

"Insurgency and terrorism have widespread networks extending across the states and even beyond the national border. Therefore, a joint and concerted effort on the part of the state and central government is essential to overcome this menace," Shamuganathan said.

Noting serious concerns on the militancy problem in Garo Hills region in western part of Meghalaya, the governor said: "This challenge to internal security situation is being dealt firmly by the security forces. The state police, ably supported by central forces, are putting in commendable efforts to nab there militant groups and neutralise their activities."

On the peace accord with the United A'Ahik Liberation Army, a militant group in Garo Hills, Shanmuganathan said the government is finalising the modalities to rehabilitate the cadres of this outfit after signing the "Text of Agreement" on December 18, 2015.

"This is a step in the right direction and will definitely set an example to other outfits to come over ground and join the mainstream," he stated.

Mentioning the vexed boundary dispute with Assam, Shanmuganathan said efforts are on to resolve the outstanding issue of inter-state boundary dispute with Assam through discussions at various levels.

He said the situation on the inter-state border has by and large remained peaceful while the situation on the international border with Bangladesh has improved significantly.

Following the protocol signed by the two prime ministers of India and Bangladesh, the governor said, the process of delineating the ground is now underway. Meghalaya will retain about 241 acres of adversely possessed land, while Bangladesh will retain about 41 acres of land.

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