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Nagaland concerned over missing border documents

September 11, 2008 20:28 IST

The Nagaland Government asserted on Thursday that whatever it would claim for redrawing the inter-state boundary would be "valid and legal" in the event of documents and maps pertaining to the Assam-Nagaland border areas remained untraced.
Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio told the state assembly that it was a serious matter if the original documents and maps pertaining to Assam-Nagaland border areas were missing, "since Nagaland has to make claims before the local boundary commission for re-drawing of boundaries on the basis of those documents."
"We have insisted that the Union Home Ministry as well as Survey of India should retrieve those documents and maps from archives in Kolkata, London [Images] or elsewhere and make available to the commission. If the documents remain untraceable, whatever claims to re-draw inter-state boundaries must be valid and legal," Rio said.
During the zero-hour of the brief monsoon session, Chingwang Konyak sought the government's clarification on the original documents earlier submitted by Nagaland to the union home ministry going missing and termed it as "a serious matter".
The chief minister said the government has asked the boundary commission and the home ministry to collect the original documents and return them to Nagaland.                              

During hearing on the protracted border issue, the commission asked the states to submit certain documents and maps. But, both Nagaland and Assam failed to do so because the Assam government informed that these documents were untraceable.
In this connection, Nagaland Commissioner H K Khulu told reporters that during the last two hearings, the state government spelt out its position that the missing documents must be traced and returned to Nagaland.
"They must be traced by the Union Home Ministry and Survey of India from any archive since it will be difficult for us to make any claim," the commissioner, who leads Nagaland team in Commission hearing, said.
He said 42 original annexure along with maps on the Assam-Nagaland border areas were submitted to the Ministry of Home Affairs in 1979 as per directives of Sundaram Commission on inter-state border.
But the MHA sent them to the Assam government for reasons best known to them and now Assam has told the Local Boundary Commission that the documents were untraced, Khulu said.
The next hearing will be held on November which will be preceded by a meeting among officials of Nagaland, MHA and Survey of India on October 13.
It may be recalled that following rejection of Sundaram Commission's recommendations on settling inter-state boundary disputes in the seventies, the Assam Government went to the Supreme Court seeking resolution of the prolonged dispute while Nagaland insisted on an out-of-court settlement in a 'spirit of give and take'.

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