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SOURCE: PTI

A senior official in Mizoram’s Champai district said on Friday that shrapnel pieces were found in Tiau riverbed, which marks the border between India and Myanmar, days after the military in the neighbouring country launched airstrikes on Chin rebel camps in its territory.

Amid claims by locals that one of the shells fell in Mizoram, the Assam Rifles had on Thursday asserted that no explosion occurred in the state.

Champhai deputy commissioner James Lalrinchhana, who had earlier said that a probe has been initiated in the matter, noted that fragments of shell were found in the riverbed.

“There is no clear evidence to suggest that the bomb fell inside the Indian territory. No crack indicative of any explosion was found anywhere. However, shrapnel were recovered from the riverbed,” he told PTI.

Lalramliana, the council president of Farkawn village, located close to the area where the metal pieces were found, had said on Thursday that a “truck owned by a local leader was partially damaged when one of the bombs struck Indian territory”.

The Myanmar military junta, on Tuesday, launched aerial strikes on Camp Victoria, the military headquarters of the Chin National Army (CNA), an ethnic insurgent group in the neighbouring country.

A CNA leader in Mizoram had told PTI on the condition of anonymity that five people, including two women, were killed and 15 others injured in the attack inside Myanmar. Meanwhile, NGO Coordination Committee, a conglomerate of major civil society organisations and student bodies in Mizoram, has, in a statement, urged the Centre to protect territorial integrity.

The committee also said that it will soon write to Union Home Minister Amit Shah on the matter.

Six Mizoram districts- Champhai, Lawngtlai, Siaha, Saitual, Serchhip and Hnahthial- share a 510-km long border with Myanmar.

According to the Mizoram home department, a total of 30,434 people from Myanmar have taken shelter in the state since February 2021 when the military junta seized power there.

Shared ethnicity and a porous border make it easy for refugees to make their way into Mizoram.