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Meghalaya Cabinet's nod for 7 new police outposts along Assam border after Mukroh violence

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The decision to set up police outposts comes in the wake of the violence that broke out along the Meghalaya-Assam border after a truck reportedly laden with timber was intercepted by Assam forest guards.

Shillong, Nov 29: The Meghalaya Cabinet on Tuesday approved a proposal to set up police outposts at seven locations, including the violence-hit Mukroh village, along the state's boundary with Assam.

The Cabinet nod was given following the killing of six people in the violence that had on November 22 broken out along the interstate border after a truck allegedly laden with illegally felled timber was intercepted by forest guards from Assam, as reported by PTI.

Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma

''The Cabinet approved the proposal for setting up seven BoPs across the Khasi Jaintia Hills region. Of these outposts, two will be erected at Mukroh and Tihwieh villages along the interstate border in West Jaintia Hills district," Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma told reporters after the meeting of the council of ministers. Other BoPs will be set up in Langpih, Lejadubi, Umwali, Muriap and Rani along the Assam-Meghalaya border, he said. The existing BoPs in Patharkhmah and Kyrshai will be upgraded to police stations, the chief minister said.

According to the CM, the expenses for operating each of the BoPs will be around Rs two crore annually.

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Sangma said his government also directed the state's director general of police to pay a visit to certain villages in the disputed border areas and submit a report.

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Earlier, Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma had announced the government decision after chairing an all-party meeting in Shillong which was attended by local MLAs from Jaintia Hills. The lawmakers were briefed on steps that have been taken and the future course of action by the state government following the firing at Mukroh on November 22 in which five villagers and an Assam forest guard lost their lives.

NHRC takes cognisance of Assam-Meghalaya border violence
Meanwhile, the NHRC has taken congnisance of the violence in the disputed area on the Assam-Meghalaya border that claimed six lives earlier this month. The Commission observed that whatever be the dispute, the police has to use restraint in such a situation.

"The National Human Rights Commission has taken cognizance of a memorandum by the chief minister of Meghalaya (Conrad K Sangma) that six persons, including one Assam forest official, had died in firing by the Assam Police and Assam Forest Guards at Mukroh village in West Jaintia Hills District of Meghalaya on 22nd November, 2022," NHRC said in a statement.

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There is a need to examine the standard operating procedure, if any, in vogue about firing by armed forces/police in disputed areas between states, it added.

Violence had erupted in Mukroh village after a truck allegedly laden with illegally felled timber and enroute to Meghalaya was stopped by police and forest personnel of West Karbi Anlong district of Assam on November 22 morning, leading to the death of its forest personnel and five civilians from Meghalaya.

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