Burma border to be fenced

The Union home minister said that the Indian government is also discussing the free movement regime (FMR) agreement with Myanmar

Guwahati: Union home minister Amit Shah on Saturday announced that the Government of India has decided to fence its international border with Myanmar, like the India-Bangladesh border, to restrict free movement.

Speaking at the passing-out parade of state police commandos in Guwahati, Assam, Shah said, “Our border with Myanmar is an open border. The Narendra Modi government has decided to protect the India-Myanmar border. We will work towards building a fence in the entire border area (with Myanmar), like the border with Bangladesh.”

The Union home minister said that the Indian government is also discussing the free movement regime (FMR) agreement with Myanmar. "Now, the government will stop this free movement between the two countries," Shah announced.

It is significant that nearly 600 Myanmar Army soldiers have crossed into India in the last three months. They took refuge in Mizoram's Lawngtlai district after their camps were captured by the Arakan Army militants, an ethnic armed group in the western Myanmar state of Rakhine, security sources said.

By installing a fence along the border, India will scrap the free movement regime between the two countries. People living in border regions will soon require a visa to enter the other country.

The FMR was introduced in the 1970s as people living along the India-Myanmar border have familial and ethnic ties.

Earlier, Shah, while addressing the 13th Triennial Conference of the All Bathou Mahasabha, said that the Prime Minister's mission of bringing peace and development to the Northeast has been successful. The Congress had a policy to "divert attention from problems and enjoy power, which led to the deaths of thousands of people in the region, particularly in Bodoland."

The Union home minister said: “When I became home minister, the Bodo movement was an ongoing issue. I made a sincere attempt to understand the problems and demands of one of the largest communities in the Northeast.”

He reiterated that the Prime Minister also viewed it from a new perspective and the problem was resolved with Bodoland. Today, it is free from bomb blasts, firings and violence.

"During the last three years, there has been no incident of violence in Bodoland, and it is scripting a new story by walking on the path of development," Mr Shah asserted.

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