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Bangladesh minister's visit to Muhuri Char evokes suspicion

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  15 Oct 2016 12:00 AM GMT

FROM A CORRESPONDENT

Agartala, Oct 14: Bangladesh home minister Asaduzzaman Khan’s visit to Bangladesh side of the disputed Muhuri Char has ignited fresh suspicion among the inhabitants of the South Tripura border town of Belonia. The DIG of Bangladesh police Brig. General Md Safikul Islam and other security officials accompanied him.

During the visit, the minister crossed the river by boat and inspected the Char land. Bangladeshi flags were seen fluttering on some wooden pools in the middle of the Char.

Though the inhabitants of Belonia claims that the whole Char land belongs to India, the government of India during the filisation of the enclave exchange agreement has given a part of the Char to Bangladesh.

A dispute over the 66 acres of Char land in the bank of River Muhuri is going on since the partition of India. Mid-stream of the river was stated as border between the two countries. But the Bangladesh side claimed that a large part of their land has gone to Indian side as the river changed its course subsequently.

The basis of the claim of the inhabitants of Belonia is the existence of a crematorium on the Char land since independence. The dispute erupted into clashes on several occasions as the Bangladeshi security forces raised objection when the Indian farmer’s went to cultivate the land. On several occasions, the security forces of the two countries even exchanged fire. For the last four decades, the land remained uncultivated and the crematorium remained unused as both sides reached into an understanding to keep the land vacant till a fil agreement is reached by the two countries.

Though the suspicion among the inhabitants of Belonia is running high about the real intension of the Bangladesh’s minister’s visit, no clarification is available. The Bangladesh government neither informed their Indian counterparts about the visit nor were any of the jourlists in both sides allowed to meet the minister.

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