symbolic picture Image Credit source: PTI
Free movement arrangements allow people living on either side of the border to travel up to 16 km into each other’s territory without a visa. The Centre’s decision to erect fencing on the India-Myanmar border has been welcomed by Meitei organizations based in Imphal Valley. On the other hand, Naga and Kuki bodies in Manipur have lodged a protest regarding it. It is noteworthy that in a social media post on Tuesday, Union Home Minister Amit Shah had said that the Central Government is committed to creating impenetrable borders. He said that the government has decided to fence the entire 1643 km long India-Myanmar border.
Fencing will be done at every kilometer distance in Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur. Apart from this, fencing work for about 20 kilometers in Manipur has also been approved and the work will start soon. Along with this, better monitoring facilities and a patrolling track on the border will also be created. The purpose of this fencing is to stop infiltration from Myanmar.
No compromise on land area – COCOMI
The Coordination Committee (COCOMI), a joint body of valley-based civic bodies, welcomed the decision to erect fencing along the India-Myanmar border, but cautioned that no land area of the state should be compromised during the process. M Dhananjay, assistant media coordinator of COCOMI, said that if this had been done 30 years ago, we would not have seen the violence that we are seeing today. He said that there is drug smuggling on a large scale, which poses a threat to the youth.
Drugs are being smuggled in India
M Dhananjay said that the country’s border should be closed through fencing. We welcome this decision. He said that this work should be done in such a way that our land area is not left out. Meitei groups based in Imphal Valley have been continuously demanding that the border with Myanmar be closed by fencing. Meitei groups also allege that drugs are being smuggled into India by taking advantage of the unfenced international border.