Centre plans to end Free Movement Regime with Myanmar to check influx of illegal migrants, and insurgents

Syllabus: GS-III

Subject: Security

Topic: Security challenges and their management in border areas.

India ends visa-free movement with Myanmar along a 1,643 km border, replacing it with visas. Top of Form


  • The Free Movement Regime (FMR) along the Myanmar border, passes through Mizoram, Manipur, Nagaland, and Arunachal Pradesh,
  • The FMR, allows visa-free movement within 16 km on either side.
  • A 300 km stretch of the border will be fenced over the next four-and-a-half years.
  • The decision aims to address concerns of insurgent activities, illegal immigration, and smuggling networks misusing the FMR.
  • Manipur suspended the FMR in 2020 due to the pandemic, citing ethnic violence linked to border movement. The move follows a surge in refugees after the Myanmar military coup in 2021.


Myanmar holds significance for India due to its strategic location as a gateway to Southeast Asia, countering China’s influence, and addressing internal security concerns in India’s northeastern states.

Strong economic cooperation, with India being a major trading partner and investor in Myanmar’s energy, infrastructure, and agriculture sectors, further solidifies the importance of this relationship.


The Sittwe port in Myanmar developed as part of India’s SAGAR Vision.

The historical and cultural ties between the two countries, rooted in shared traditions and the prevalence of Buddhism, contribute to a strong and enduring connection.


Conclusion: India’s decision reflects a strategic move to address security concerns, insurgent activities, and potential misuse of border privileges. The decision underscores the government’s commitment to safeguarding national interests and maintaining border integrity.

Scroll to Top