Disputed tracts along Bangla border likely be included in Census

Residents along the disputed tracts along the Indo-Bangla border are likely to be enumerated in the 2011 Census, officials indicated.

Last Updated: Feb 16, 2011, 19:33 PM IST

Shillong: Residents along the disputed
tracts along the Indo-Bangla border are likely to be
enumerated in the 2011 Census, officials indicated on Wednesday.

"The India-held adverse possession lands (APLs) along
the border should be included in the census and the district
administration will be taking all the necessary steps to
intervene in the matter," a senior Census official said.
He also indicated that the district administrations
are likely to take help from the BSF while conducting census
in APLs.
According to current official records, there are 551.8
acres of Bangladeshi land under "adverse possession" of India
(Assam and Meghalaya) while 226.81 acres of Indian land is
under adverse possession of Bangladesh.

The areas under adverse possession, 12 of them in
Meghalaya sector, were created when the two countries
demarcated the international boundary in the mid-1960s.
Meanwhile, the joint survey to be conducted in these
disputed tracts continue to hang fire, with no word coming
from either New Delhi or Dhaka.

The exercise, which was mooted by the Joint Boundary
Working Group during its meeting in New Delhi in November
2009, was initiated by survey and land records officials of
Bangladesh and Meghalaya in December.

However, the exercise was stalled on Christmas-eve in
the wake of opposition from locals and the border guarding
forces.

Bangladeshi miscreants armed with sharp weapons and
backed by BDR men illegally entered India and confronted the
joint team of survey officials several times after the survey
began on December 7, bringing to halt the exercise. The survey
virtually remained suspended since December 16.

Government sources said the issue has been referred to
the External Affairs ministries of both the countries.

Border guards of both the countries have been locked
in gun battles time and again on those frontiers over
possession of the stretches, leading to fleeing of locals
occasionally.

PTI