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Merapani tense as Nagas try to occupy land

By Correspondent

DERGAON, Feb 21 � The Assam-Nagaland border area is tense once again following alleged attempts by Naga people to occupy disputed land at Merapani.

According to information available, over 200 Naga people came to Indrapur Tarani at Merapani under D-sector of the Assam-Nagaland border area, which is under possession of Assamese villagers, around 9 am today and allegedly cleared some land by cutting down the trees of the adjacent areas belonging to the families of Bhuban Saikia, Naduk Chutia, Gopal Bodo, Arun Bora and others.

The Naga people who came from Wokha, Kankan Basti and Borhola along with people from nearby areas like Bargang, Mikirang and Changpang, attempted to clear the site. The Assam villagers opposed the move and this led to a tense situation.

The Naga people reportedly told the local people that a hospital, a training centre, etc., would be set up in the area by Christian Missionaries. The villagers informed the CRPF camp in the area, but the latter showed no interest in the matter.

The border magistrate and the CRPF Sector Commandant rushed to the spot, but due to the indifferent role of the CRPF personnel, the

villagers gheraoed the Naga people at Kolajan field and tried to attack them with daos, lathis, etc. Some people fled the scene, while about 50 Naga people were detained at Merapani Police Station.

Later, Golaghat SP PP Singh visited the spot and asked the Assamese villagers to maintain peace. The SP also discussed the matter with members of the local units of AASU, AJYCP, AATSA etc.

But the local people are passing their days in terror as Naga miscreants have been trying to create a law-and-order situation in the areas regularly since Magh Bihu.

Meanwhile, it has been alleged that some NSCN activists opened fire in the areas a few days ago. This has caused panic among the HSLC and HSSLC examinees of the areas.

Meanwhile, the situation is under control, informed DC Golaghat Nitin Khade. When contacted, the DC told this correspondent that the detained people were later released. �I am discussing the matter of dispute with ADC Bhandari. As the dispute is not a new matter, it will take time and it will be discussed again shortly,� the DC added.

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