Guwahati: Nearly 80,000 hectares of land belonging to Assam are being "occupied" currently by "six neighbouring states", the government on Thursday claimed in the state Assembly.
Replying to a query by AGP MLA, Keshab Mahanta during the Question Hour, Environment and Forest Minister Rockybul Hussain said, a total of 77,531.71 hectares of Assam land across 15 districts are "under the control of six neighbouring states at present."
"These include Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, West Bengal, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Tripura," he claimed.
The Dispur revenue circle, where the state capital complex, Assembly, Chief Minister`s residence and many other important government establishments are located, has lost over 40 hectares of land to Meghalaya, the minister said.
Out of all the occupying states, "Nagaland has possessed the highest amount of land - 59,159.77 hectares. Tripura 25 hectares of land, the least among the six states. Arunachal Pradesh has occupied about 13,211.11 hectares land, while Meghalaya, Mizoram and West Bengal have grabbed 2,885.82 hectares, 1,986 hectares and 264 hectares respectively in Assam," the minister claimed.
The 15 districts, having faced the situation in Assam, are Tinsukia, Dhemaji, Goalpara, Jorhat, Sonitpur, Cachar, Sivasagar, Karbi Anglong, Kamrup Rural, Kamrup Metro, Lakhimpur, Golaghat, Hailakandi, Karimganj and Kokrajhar, he maintained.
Hussain, who replied on behalf of Border Areas Development Minister, also said that 46 persons have been killed so far since 2001 due to different inter-state border problems with three states -- Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya.
Earlier this year, 15 persons were killed and 12 others were injured when a human wall was being erected by residents of Assam side to stop encroachment inside the Behali Reserve Forest in Sonitpur district, he said.
Accepting Mahanta`s request, Hussain said the government will soon hold a discussion with concerned officials and MLAs from the border areas to solve various issues.
Talking about measures that the government is taking to minimise conflicts, Hussain said Border Peace Committees are being formed to maintain cordial atmosphere through dialogues with the neighbouring states.
To provide security to people and properties, the government has set up 48 border outposts, he added.
Between 2011-12 and 2013-14, the government allocated a total of Rs 28.73 crore to different agencies for various development schemes, Hussain replied to a different query by AGP MLA Bhupen Roy.