The Constitution (119th Amendment) Bill, 2013, which will allow the operationalisation of the 1974 India-Bangladesh Land Boundary Agreement, was cleared by the Cabinet recently.
The bill aims at giving effect to the acquiring of territories by India and transfer of territories to Bangladesh through retaining of adverse possession and exchange of enclaves in pursuance of the agreement of 1974.
The swap will involve handing over 17,000 acres of land to Bangladesh in return for 7,000 acres in 111 enclaves in West Bengal, Assam, Tripura and Meghalaya, and was first decided under the 1974 Land Boundary Agreement (LBA) between India and Bangladesh, but never ratified by Parliament.
The number of people to be involved in the whole swap is approximately 52,000, of which about 15,000 are on the Indian side of the border.
These people have no social security and lack basic amenities. This agreement is expected to address this humanitarian issue.
Now, it becomes the responsibilities of the governments of India and Bangladesh to ensure that there is no discrimination against them.
The deal also opens the door for collaboration with Bangladesh for transit facilities to India’s landlocked North-East, a long standing demand of India crucial for developing the vast insurgency-river region.
This deal also helps check illegal migration which has been a major problem which has been termed as demographic invasion driving to out populate indigenous community and region.
Smuggling of goods, drugs, trafficking of women and children can all also be put under check.
“The India-Bangladesh Land boundary agreement (LBA) is more than the diplomatic exercise of maintaining good relations between both the nations.” Examine the significance and implications of the agreement in the light of the statement.
“When it comes to national boundaries; regionalism should not get a veto over the larger goal of national integration and development.” Comment on the developments in the India-Bangladesh LBA since its inception in the light of Centre-state relations.
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