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Nepalese given 15 days deadline to quit Meghalaya
Correspondent SHILLONG, JUL 20:
Published on 20 Jul. 2009 11:37 PM IST
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Tribal Khasi-Garo villagers of the disputed Langpih area on the Assam-Meghalaya border today gave 15 days to the Nepalese community to quit the disputed village or face dire consequences. ‘’We have decided to give 15 days time with the quit notice to the Nepalese population since they would need sufficient time to pack up and leave our homeland permanently,’’ Synjuk ki Nongsynshar Shnong (SNS) chief T Nonglang said. Last week, the SNS served the quit notice to hundreds of the Nepalese community residing in the disputed area after they allegedly forcefully encroached tribal lands with the support of the Assam government. Several other pressure groups have also extended support to the SNS for issuing the same. The quit notices were served to the Nepalese community for the ‘’harassment of tribal Khasi people’’ in the area, the villagers added. ‘’If they fail to move within the priod, we will have no option, but to use force in order to remove them from our area,’’ Mr Nonglang said. Blaming the Nepalese community for forcing the local indigenous population to issue ‘quit notices’ against them, the SNS chief alleged the community was forcefully intruding into tribal areas by claiming the ownership of the land. Local villagers alleged the Assam government had been trying to disrupt the peace and tranquility in Langpih area by supporting Nepalese nationals with the aim to claim illegally 108 Garo-Khasi villages, which fall under Nongstoin Assembly constituency of Meghalaya. A clash had erupted last month between the tribal Khasi-Garo people and the Nepalese after the latter allegedly encroaching the area. Following the clash, Meghalaya Chief Minister DD Lapang had spoken to his Assam counterpart Tarun Gogoi, urging him to ensure peace and tranquility in the disputed area. Both the Chief Ministers were expected to meet soon to settle the border dispute between the two neighbouring states. Meghalaya has 12 areas of difference with Assam.

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