Act against trespassing

After the recent incident of trespassing by officials of the Assam forest department in Tarasso, in Papum Pare district, another allegation of trespassing by Assam’s forest officials on Arunachal’s territory has emerged from Changlang district. The locals alleged that officials from neighbouring Assam entered Phenbiro-I village in Manmao circle, damaged the foundation stone of the rural works department marking the interstate link road, and removed a PHED’s ODF signboard. These repeated trespassing on Arunachal’s territory, especially during the time of lockdown, by Assam is unfortunate and against the law.
First of all, they are violating the Supreme Court’s order to maintain the status quo. The boundary dispute is pending in the SC for the last many years, and the apex court had asked both the state governments to maintain the status quo till a solution is worked out. Also, as the whole country is strictly following the lockdown measures, the trespassing by large numbers of Assam officials on the forests of Arunachal is going against social distancing norms. The number of Covid-19 cases is rising in Assam. The government of Arunachal has banned interstate movement of people. Therefore, the Assam forest officials should stop wading into Arunachal’s territory. The local authorities should register cases and arrest officials who illegally trespass on the state’s territory. Further, it is shocking that despite several reports of illegal trespassing, the government of Arunachal is yet to take up the matter with its Assam counterpart. The earlier it lodges protest, the better it is for the state.