High level team to inspect border fencing
Imphal June 25: A high level official team led by Chief Secretary, DS Poonia will inspect the site where first phase of border fencing is taken up at Moreh section of the Indo-Myanmar international border.
The six members team will leave Imphal tomorrow and is scheduled to return on June 28 after inspecting the progress of the work taken up so far . The team will also inspect the controversial sites of the border, official said Friday.
At present the fencing work is in progress between pillar 79 and pillar 81 at Moreh. Security forces, deployed along the 1,463 km long Indo-Myanmar international border, want a time-bound execution of the ongoing border fencing.
Moreh town and its nearby areas were left out of the border fencing exercise, apparently to avoid the shifting of a very old Tamil temple, a portion of which has fallen on the other side of the demarcated boundary line.
A controversy surfaced on the question of shifting the temple into Indian territory as civil organisations based in the Moreh town strongly opposed in the relocation of the temple.
Security forces wanted to speed up the fencing stressing the urgent need to seal this stretch of the border, particularly the stretch with Manipur. Anti-Indian insurgents move freely and transport weapons through this route. Drug peddlers are equally at ease in trafficking drugs through this strategic route.
While the legal trade through the Moreh transit point earns about Rs 10-12 crore per annum, the volume of illegal trade is much higher. If the fencing is executed without any delay, this illegal trade will receive a major setback, the sources highlighted.
However, the Assam Rifles and state police personnel, who are engaged in a relentless battle against the militants, are keen to seal the route. The two major insurgent groups of Manipur, the People’s Liberation Army and the United National Liberation Front besides other groups like the United Liberation Front of Asom and the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Issac-Muivah) and NSCN (Khaplang) groups have their base camps in Myanmarese territory bordering India, according to intelligence analysis reports.
They said that these militants use the Friendship Road along the border and transport weapons through the National Highway 39 which goes from Moreh to Dimapur.
Drug trafficking is another menace that has become a source of concern for quite sometime now. The United Nations Drug Control Programme and the International Narcotic Control Board in their reports in 2001, identified Manipur, Nagaland and Mizoram as the transit points for illegal drug trafficking from across the border.
The report stated that these three states were fast emerging as the epicentre of the narco business. The flow of drugs from across the border has already caused an AIDS epidemic in the region turning it into a high risk zone.