When the entire nation was engulfed in the celebration of Independence Day, the people of Merapani in Assam-Nagaland border in Golaghat district passed the day under uncertainty and insecurity. It all began on Friday, 12th August when Bhuban Ali (35), Rezim Ali (36) and Sukur Ali (10) went to Lakhuti Basti under Bhandari Sub-division in Nagaland to sell cows. But all went wrong when Bhuban Ali went missing on Sunday and later he was found dead under suspicious condition. The local people suspecting murder informed the police and handed over the other two who accompanied the decease to Bhandari Police Station. When the news of Bhuban Ali’s death reached Merapani the people became furious and accused the Nagas of his death. As a retaliation the villagers ransacked the house of one Y. Lotha situated in the disputed area of Foothill in Assam-Nagaland Border. Later they also beat up six Naga youths who were coming from Bangaluru in Merapani Bazar and handed over to Merpani Police. On the other hand a team 25 students who went to Nagaland for Independence Day celebration were also detained by Naga people. The situation went worse when cadres of NSCN(IM) blank fired in Foothill area and also ordered fifteen minorities families of Upper Merapani to leave their house. Some shops and hotels were also vandalized by Naga People in Upper Merapani. Later administrative officials of both Assam and Nagaland hold a meeting in the Merapani CRPF Camp and both the parties has agreed to release the people. Till the filing of this report the situation is under control but tension still prevails.
It is to be noted that the first clash between Nagaland and Assamese villagers residing at the Doyang forest reserve broke out in 1968. Similar incident took place at Rengma forest reserve of Karbi Anglong on January 5, 1979.
The worst clash occurred on June 4, 1985, when over 100 people died in firing between Assam and Nagaland police at Merapani.