Malkangiri: Amid a border standoff between Odisha and Andhra Pradesh, a new row has now added fresh concerns for Odisha after some officials from the neighbouring State of Chhattisgarh allegedly carried out developmental works in Malkangiri district.
Officials of Chhattisgarh allegedly constructed a pucca road at Matapaka panchayat in Malkangiri by crossing over the inter-state border and installed a milestone in Odisha land. Locals took the matter to notice of Malkangiri district administration after observing the activities by the neighbouring State authorities.
Even as three-four years have passed since Chhattisgarh carried out the developmental work, Malkangiri district administration was unaware of the action, alleged the local residents.
“The officials from Chhattisgarh installed a milestone in our district. We were unaware of their activities initially. We thought that it was installed earlier at the appropriate place. Later, we learnt that the neighbouring State had intruded into our territory. They have not also consulted us before carrying out such unlawful programmes,” said Binayak Chandra Madhi, local sarpanch.
Following complaints of locals, a team of administrative officials have visited the spot and demarcated the border line again. The officials also removed the milestone installed by the neighbouring State and kept it on actual border point.
“There was a muddy kutcha road at the place three-four years ago. They (Chhattisgarh officials) had constructed a road on the request of the locals and stretched it into Odisha border. Some locals pointed out their intrusion and informed us. Today, I along with the BDO, RI, Panchayat executive officer, local sarpanch visited the spot and verified the border line,” tehsildar Gunanidhi Nayak said.
A close watch has been kept on the border over any further possible activities. The administrative officials have also assured the villagers of all developmental works in the locality.
Notably, the border dispute between Andhra and Odisha over a group of villages in Kotia under Koraput district is yet to be resolved. The matter is also pending in the Supreme Court.