BJP wants Bangladesh land deal details in parliament


New Delhi: Expressing its concern over India-Bangladesh Land Transfer Agreement reached during Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Dhaka last month, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Saturday called upon the government to place complete details of the land transfer protocols with relevant survey maps before parliament.

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In a resolution passed at its national executive meeting, the BJP said the land transfer agreement had “ignored the feelings and sentiments of the people of the border states of Assam and West Bengal”.

“In the name of rationalisation of adversely possessed lands and exchanging enclaves of Bangladesh in India and vice versa, the rights and interests of the local population have been severely compromised, leading to unrest throughout Assam and in many parts of north Bengal,” the resolution said.

It said the BJP had warned the government during the monosoon session of parliament not to reach land transfer agreement without appropriate consultation with the affected people.

It said the party had constituted a committee under S.S Ahluwalia, deputy leader of the party in the Rajya Sabha, to visit the affected border districts in the two states.

“The team found widespread confusion and anxiety prevailing among the people because they had not been taken into confidence in this matter. The people are agitated because they rightly feel that the government of India has legitimised encroachment of Indian territories by Bangladesh, which amounts to formally transferring land illegally occupied by erstwhile East Pakistan and later Bangladesh over the years. Apart from Assam and West Bengal, there are anxieties in Tripura and Mizoram,” the resolution said.

It said nearly 1,500 survey maps were exchanged between Indian and Bangladeshi officials before re-demarcation of the border but they were not in the public domain and security forces stationed on the border were also in the dark about the precise redrawing of the border.

“The BJP demands the government place the complete details of the land transfer protocols with all relevant survey maps before parliament. The party wants a comprehensive discussion in the winter session of parliament before the government takes any steps to part with Indian territories,” the party said.

The resolution said while the party was in favour of improving ties with Bangladesh, it “cannot be at the cost of the livelihood and properties of Indian citizens living in the affected border regions”.

The party said “demographic invasion of India by illegal Bangladeshi migrants has already severely affected the identity, culture and social cohesion of many parts of Assam and West Bengal” and “no further compromise with the country’s national interests can be permitted”.