Myanmar border to be fenced, Free Movement Regime being re-examined: Home Minister Amit Shah

The development comes days after newly elected Mizoram Chief Minister reportedly told the Union External Affairs Minister that fencing the border will not be acceptable.


File photo of Union Home Minister Amit Shah. PHOTO: THE STATESMAN

January 22, 2024

NEW DELHIUnion Home Minister Amit Shah on Saturday announced that India’s border with conflict-ridden Myanmar will be fenced like the Indo-Bangladesh border and that the free movement between the two countries will also end.

“The government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has decided to fence the entire India-Myanmar border like it has been done along the border with Bangladesh,” the home minister said while addressing the passing out parade of the first batch of the five newly-constituted Assam Police Commando battalions.

Shah said that the fencing process along the Myanmar border will begin soon and unrestricted entry of Myanmar citizens into the Indian side will also be scrapped.

The Free Movement Regime (FMR) between India and Myanmar allows people living in border towns to enter up to 16 km inside the other country without any visa.

“Our government is reexamining the Free Movement Regime (FMR) provision that exists with Myanmar and now this facility, which allows free movement will be stopped,” said Shah.

India shares a 1643-km long border with Myanmar in four states – Mizoram, Nagaland, Manipur and Arunanchal Pradesh.

The development comes days after newly elected Mizoram Chief Minister Lalduhoma reportedly told Union External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar that fencing the border will not be acceptable.

In his meeting with Jaishankar earlier this month, Lalduhoma said that British separated people of Mizo community by carving out Burma from India and that he hopes the nation (Myanmar) will once day come under one administration, therefore, fencing the border can’t be acceptable.

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