On September 30th, Assam and Meghalaya reached a significant agreement to ease tensions in the violence-stricken region of Khanduli along their border. The two states decided to withdraw their respective police forces from the area, opting instead to deploy a neutral force in an effort to convey a positive message and instill confidence among the local residents.
The decision came after an intense standoff occurred, with Assam Police establishing a post in the area, followed by Meghalaya Police setting up a post directly in front of it. To de-escalate the situation, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma of Assam announced the withdrawal of state police forces and the deployment of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) as a neutral presence.
Following a meeting with Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, both leaders agreed to visit the troubled Block I area together during the last week of October. Sangma disclosed that after a prolonged process, the two states were on the brink of finalizing the actual boundary markers in the first six disputed areas, as outlined in a previous Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).
He stated that the locations of markers in the Hahim sector had been approved, and the Survey of India had been tasked with completing the process for the remaining five areas by December 31. Addressing concerns in the Tarabari area, Chief Minister Sarma expressed a willingness to be more flexible to resolve outstanding issues.
Sangma also highlighted the progress of regional committees established to address disputes in three other areas—Langpih, Deshdemoreah, and Nongwah—and indicated that conclusions would be reached shortly. The modalities for resolution will be determined by the regional committees, with final decisions made at a Chief Minister-level meeting.
During the meeting, which included members of the regional committees and senior government officials from both states, discussions also centered on the status of judicial inquiries related to the Mukroh firing incident. In light of the lack of cooperation from witnesses on the opposing side, both states decided to conclude their respective judicial inquiries. Instead, they will request the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to conduct an impartial inquiry into the matter, to be registered at a neutral venue for fairness and objectivity.