Land exchange agreement triggered protests in Assam.

Tarun GogoiGuwahati: The land exchange agreement between India and Bangladesh during the prime minister’s current visit to Dhaka has triggered protests across the state. Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi is happy that the long-standing boundary disputes with the neighbouring country have been ultimately resolved.

Gogoi, who returned from Dhaka on Thursday, said that with the border deal signed between the two countries, the permeable frontier could now be sealed and incidents of Bangladeshi infiltrators, smugglers and militants sneaking into Assam checked.

Amongst the agreements signed between India and Bangladesh during PM Manmohan Singh and NE chief ministers’ visit to Dhaka on Tuesday, the protocol to the 1974 land boundary demarcation between the2 countries was also signed.

According to the deal, the concern of unfavourably possessed land in Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and West Bengal along the India-Bangladesh border was finalized.

The All Assam Students’ Union (AASU), which was answerable for a 6-year movement against Bangladeshi migrants, called the deal a disloyalty for the Assamese people. Gogoi, it said, should learn from West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, whose opposition scuttled the Centre’s plans for the Teesta water sharing pact.

The BJP has announced that it would resist the ceding of land. General secretary of state BJP Pradyut Bora said that 10 pacts have been signed with Bangladesh however none deals with the presence of over 40 lakh illegal Bangladeshis in Assam. “Why didn’t the CM or the PM discuss the influx issue with their Bangladeshi counterparts?”

According to the reports, the AASU will begin its agitation with a torchlight procession on Friday and hold an executive meeting on September 15 to chalk out a strategy. The students’ body has already requested to all political parties to oppose the ratification of the deal by Parliament.

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