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Assam has no claim over any land: Himanta Biswa Sarma

“We cannot fight with the bordering states for small villages. We do not want anybody to leave their land, as Assam has no claim over any land. Assam did not ask for any land. It is not a question of them leaving the land because we have never in our history asked for any land from our bordering states,”

IANS | New Delhi |

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Tuesday that the state has no claim over any land, adding that he does not want anyone to leave their land.

Talking to the media in the national capital, Sarma said, “We cannot fight with the bordering states for small villages. We do not want anybody to leave their land, as Assam has no claim over any land.

“Assam did not ask for any land. It is not a question of them leaving the land because we have never in our history asked for any land from our bordering states,” Sarma said.

Sarma was referring to the border disputes between Assam and its neighbouring states. Recently, a border dispute between Assam and Mizoram had turned violent, killing at least six people.

“Their (people’s) loyalty lies with which side? Are they loyal to Assam or Meghalaya? Loyalty is one of the primary criteria, while second criteria is your history, and third is administrative convenience. States exist for the welfare of the people.

“So if you have to travel 10 km in Meghalaya to reach the district headquarters and 30 km in Assam for the same purpose, administrative convenience is definitely not on Assam’s side. So, four broad criterion have been formulated — historical prospective, continuity, administrative convenience and will of the people, which is the most important factor,” Sarma said.

The Chief Minister said that he has invited all Assam MPs in the national capital for dinner on Tuesday, cutting across party lines.

“I want to speak to them about Assam’s development issues as one unit,” he said.

Talking about Assam’s population control policy, Sarma said, “This is the need of the hour and you cannot do it by force. You need to have both incentives and disincentives. Assam’s policy is based on both incentives and disincentives. We give incentives for small families and also provide disincentives for bigger families. If somebody goes through Assam’s population policy, I think some of the provisions can be followed nationally.”