By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, May 2: Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi requested Prime Minister rendra Modi for inclusion of the State of Assam in the protocol signed between the Government of Republic of India and the Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh signed on September 6, 2011.
In a letter to Prime Minister Modi today, Chief Minister Gogoi expressed surprise at the reported decision of the Government of India not to include clauses relating to Assam sector in the protocol ratified by the Parliament without any consultation with the Government of Assam. “We are completely in the dark about the reasons behind this turround and how the interest of the people of Assam are going to be protected by the exclusion of the clauses relating to Assam during the process of ratification by the Parliament. This decision is also against the principles of cooperative federalism which you have been advocating,” he said.
The Chief Minister pointed out that the provisions of the protocol is an integral part of the 1974 Agreement between the Government of India and the Government of Bangladesh. “As a result of the protocol, the Radcliff Line demarcating India-Bangladesh border in the Assam sector mely, Lathitilla-Dumabari sector in Karimganj district,Kalabari (Boroibari) area in Dhubri district and the Pallathal area in Karimganj district of Assam will be re-drawn as agreed to in the protocol,” Gogoi said, adding, “It is seen as a result of the re-demarcation, approximately 714 acres of land area in Lathitilla area will formally become part of India (State of Assam) and an area of 193.85 acres of land in Kalabari (Boroibari) and 74.55 acres of land in Pallathal area will formally belong to Bangladesh. These 268.40 acres of land are already under adverse possession of Bangladesh. Therefore, India (State of Assam) will formally get a net land area of 445.6 acres with reference to the Radcliff Line.”
The Chief Minister also pointed out in the letter that the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs recommending the ratification of the protocol.
Gogoi while reminding Modi about his statement during his visit to Assam in November 2014 that the Protocol 2011 to the Indo-Bangladesh Boundary Agreement, 1974 would benefit Assam in the long run, pointed out that the agreement if ratified along with the clauses relating to Assam sector would not only lead to a permanent solution to the long standing India-Bangladesh border disputes in the Assam sector but also facilitate demarcation of undemarcated areas in Lathitilla-Dumabari. “Construction of border fencing will also prevent illegal infiltration of foreigners and subversive elements, smuggling, etc by sealing the porous border,” he added.
Keeping in view the interest of the people of Assam, the Chief Minister requested the Prime Minister to initiate steps for ratification of the protocol by Parliament by including the clauses relating to Assam.