The Assam Assembly on Tuesday witnessed noisy scenes after state Revenue Minister Bhumidhar Barman said that Bangladesh had encroached 499.83 acres of the state’s territory. He also informed that the Latitila Dumabari area in Karimganj district was declared “disputed” as Bangladesh had been claiming it as its territory.
“The matter of settlement of the dispute of the ‘Disputed Area’ of the border is under the purview of the Government of India”, said Barman. He further added that there were disputes over some territories of Karimganj district with erstwhile East Pakistan as well. Despite the creation of Bangladesh, the border dispute has remained.
The State Revenue Minister said the Assam government had constantly pressed the Union to solve the state’s border dispute with Bangladesh. “The Ministry of Home Affairs is handling the matter of ‘Disputed Area’,” he said. Replying to a question on the India-Bangladesh border fencing, Barman said that the length of the border falling in Assam is 267.3 km, of which only 160.30 km is land-based.
“The works of erecting barbed wire fencing entrusted to Assam PWD has almost been completed. The remaining works of barbed wire fencing and roads in the Surma sector of Cachar district are targeted to complete by October 2008,” said Barman.
The large-scale illegal immigration from Bangladesh has changed the demographic profile of the entire northeastern region, particularly Assam.