INDO-BANGLA LAND DEAL
Kolkata/ Guwahati, July 6: An official survey began today to confirm enclave dwellers' choice of tiolity following exchange of enclaves between Bangladesh and India.
The survey will cover the population and the amount of land in 162 enclaves inside Bangladesh and India as per the Land Boundary Agreement.
"The enumeration work in the Chitmahal enclaves of India and Bangladesh has started from today. This is a momentous day for my brothers and sisters of Chitmahal on both sides of the border. Because at the end of this process, they will realise their long-cherished dream of citizenship," West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said.
Every team, comprising of five members, will have representatives from both countries, and a supervisor to monitor their activities.
People welcomed the survey works in a cheerful manner and they are co-operating the officials, said Mahbubur Rahman of Bangladesh and Sajal Sarker of India, who are conducting survey at Shibprasad-Mustafiz enclave.
P Ulangathak, administration of Cooch Behar district, said the survey is going on amid tight security with the help of BGB and police.
The survey will continue till July 16, and the teams will submit reports to the authorities concerned of the two countries by the end of this month.
A total of 37,369 people live in the 111 Indian enclaves inside Bangladesh while 14,215 people live in the 51 Bangladeshi enclaves inside Indian territories.
A joint delegation of Bangladesh and India will filise the survey and decide on the matter of citizenship of the enclave dwellers. It will then prepare a list of Bangladeshi and Indian tiols, and send it to the authorities concerned of the two countries.
The two governments will then filise the list by July 31 and arrange for their rehabilitation in the country of their choice. In a historic move, India and Bangladesh in June ratified the over 40-year-old Land Boundary Agreement.
The agreement envisages transfer of 111 enclaves with a total area of 17,160.63 acres to Bangladesh, while Dhaka will transfer 51 enclaves with an area of 7,110.02 acres to India. A 6.1-km undefined border stretch will be demarcated.
The Indian parliament unimously passed the constitution amendment bill to allow operatiolisation of the 1974 India-Bangladesh agreement and its protocol inked in 2011.