Unregulated free-movement poses security threat: Singh



Dimapur (Nagaland): The unregulated "free-movement regime" that facilitates cross-border movement of people along porous Indo-Myanmar boundary has posed a security threat to the region, a senior army commander has said.

"The unregulated free-movement regime by which unlimited number of Myanmarese people were allowed to enter Manipur and Mizoram posed a security threat since militants, criminals, arms and drugs smugglers were taking advantage of this arrangement," GOC-in-C of Army's 3 Corps, Lt Gen N K Singh told newsmen here yesterday.

The security forces have reminded, particularly the Mizoram government, to enforce certain regulations on immigration since a large number of people from other side of the border used to stay at Champai, Aizwal for long duration, he said.

Assam Rifles personnel manning the border were also monitoring movements of Myanmarese people and recently 162 people were sent back to Myanmar by Mizoram police, he said. Unregulated immigrations to Churachandpur district of Manipur needed to be discouraged, Lt Gen Singh said.

The area of Army's 3 Corps covers North-East bordering 1,600 odd km of Indo-Myanmar boundary.

Since demarcation of Indo-Burma boundary, the villagers from both sides of the divide are allowed freely to visit areas up to 20 km from the border for trade, meeting relatives, attending to health care services etc for a short duration.

Lt Gen Singh said barbed fencing along Mizoram sector of the international boundary was on the pipeline. He was speaking with the mediapersons of the region on the eve of the silver jubilee celebration of Rangapahar (near Dimapur)-based Army's 3 Corps.

The construction of fencing on eastern side of Moreh sector in Manipur had already begun and it would be taken up on western side in next few months, he said.

There was no demand from Nagaland government for fencing and this sector remained calm so far with Assam Rifles personnel guarding it, he said.

Army's 3 Corps looks after security aspects of Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura, south and upper Assam and a vast part of Arunachal Pradesh.

PTI