Itanagar: Assam minister Ranjit Dutta, who was in Itanagar to attend a tribal festival, has exuded confidence that the decades-old boundary dispute between the two BJP-ruled states can be resolved through “meaningful" dialogue.
Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal has been initiating measures with his Arunachal counterpart Pema Khandu to hammer out a permanent solution to the border issue, the irrigation minister from Assam said on Tuesday in his address at the Nyokum Yullo festival in Itanagar.
The festival is celebrated by the Nyishi community of the state every year to invoke God’s blessings for good harvest and communal harmony.
Clad in Nyishi Bopia (headgear), Dutta, who attended the festival on behalf of Sonowal, said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi is serious about the dispute between North East states, so is Sonowal. The CM has already initiated a similar dialogue with Nagaland counterpart T.R. Zeliang," he said.
Stating that “divisive forces" were trying to “destabilize peace" in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh, Dutta called upon the people of both the states to thwart such attempts.
“Till 1978 both the states were under one administrative unit of ‘bor Axom’ (Greater Assam). The people of both the states since time immemorial have been maintaining cordial relations," the minister said.
Dutta called upon the Assamese people staying in Arunachal Pradesh to uphold the age-old relations through cultural exchange programmes.
Lauding the Nyishi community for preserving the age-old rich culture and traditions, Dutta also exhorted the elderly people in the state to pass on the baton of tradition and culture to the younger generations.
Nyokum Yullo Celebration Committee chairman Ha Tatu, on his part, said the presence of a minister from neighbouring Assam will cement the ties between the people of both the states.