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Biren refutes reports of shifting border pillar

Biren refutes reports  of shifting border pillar
Biren Singh (NP)
Correspondent IMPHAL, Jul 12 | Publish Date: 7/13/2018 12:04:48 AM IST
Manipur government has refuted the allegation of shifting of a border pillar at the Manipur sector of Indo-Myanmar border towards Indian Territory.
State chief minister N Biren Singh told reporters that, “Border pillar no. 81 is still at the same site where it was erected as per the India-Myanmar Boundary Agreement, 1967.” 
The chief minister said that the state government has written to the Centre to send a survey team to conduct verification on the positions of subsidiary pillars between main border pillar no. 80 to 82 on the India-Myanmar boundary and particularly main border pillar no. 81 in the presence of all stakeholders to clear the doubts in the minds of the general public.
He said that the issue has caused anxiety and doubts in the minds of the general public and that state government was putting all efforts to address the issue considering the interest and sentiments of the people of the state.
State government has formed a high-level committee on June 25 to investigate into the allegations raised by the locals of Kwatha Khunou. 
The committee headed by state revenue minister Karam Shyam and comprising water resources minister Letpao Haokip and tribal affairs and hills minister N Kayisii and others conducted spot verification on July 6.
The chief minister said that state government had also written to Centre requesting to issue an advisory to the Joint Survey Team to put on hold the survey work till the issue was resolved.
Taking note of the issue, Ministry of External Affairs had issued a statement on July 8, claiming that the allegation was “baseless and unsubstantiated”.
The ministry informed that the only work that was being undertaken was joint survey for putting up subsidiary pillars and identifying encroachments, if any. The state government was aware of it. The chief minister further said that Tengnoupal DC and concerned SP visited Kwatha, a Manipur village near the international border on December 1, 2017 to inform the villagers about the survey of subsidiary pillars.
During the press conference, the chief minister also produced old maps of 1951 and 1913 showing boundary of Manipur and Myanmar to media persons to make clear that there has been no alteration in the location of border pillar 81.
He further added that in view of the concerns raised on the issues of international boundary vis-a-vis traditional boundary, the state government has been holding consultations with several stakeholders including the United Committee Manipur (UCM).
“I had met with representatives of UCM on July 11 last and compared notes on traditional boundary in the backdrop of 1967 boundary agreement and old maps (1913 and 1957) from government records,” he said.
While talking about the prevailing crisis in the Manipur University, the chief minister said that state government has been making all possible efforts including meeting with the representatives of striking MUTA and MUSU and explained the stand of the Manipur University community to the Union human resources development minister.
He further said that a team led by him will be leaving Imphal for New Delhi on Friday to meet HRD minister Prakash Javadekar and apprise him about the present situation of the varsity.
The chief minister said that the as Manipur University is a Central government institution, the state government can’t intervene into its affairs. 

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