Ancient dargah awaits B'desh nod for revamp
Popularly known as Pirsthan, a 1000-year-old shrine is tucked away in modest and humble settings along the Indian side of the Indo-B'desh border in Mahendraganj, about 400 km west of Shillong.india Updated: Mar 23, 2008 17:24 IST
Popularly known as Pirsthan, a 1000-year-old shrine still awaits the nod from Bangladesh authorities to get its much-needed facelift.
Tucked away in modest and humble settings along the Indian side of the Indo-Bangladesh border, Dargah Sharif of Hazrat Shah Kamal Baba in Mahendraganj, about 400 km west of Shillong, in West Garo Hills has been venerated for centuries and attracts multitudes to its side on the annual 'mela' day each year.
The history behind this dargah dates back to about 1000 years, but the fact a portion of it lies within 150 yards from the zero line of the Bangladesh border has stood as a roadblock for the Indian authorities to go ahead with the revamp works to preserve it.
The BSF authorities took up the matter with the BDR yet again during the four-day conference with BDR that concluded on March 13. "We have asked the BDR to allow the construction of retention wall and fencing of the Dargah falling 150 yards under the Tura sector," BSF IG PK Mishra, who led the BSF delegation during the conference, said.
Unless the Government of Bangladesh allow, India cannot go ahead with the revamp work because it lies within 150 yards, and both sides had earlier agreed to maintain status quo in these virtually 'no-man-lands'. As on date, there has been no positive response from the authorities of the neighbouring country. Mishra said the BSF took up the matter of obstruction to developmental activities on the Indian border areas by BDR, including obstruction to the ongoing fencing work.
Fencing work also has come to a halt in 142 patches, stretching to nearly 100 km of the international borders of the Northeast.
However, the BDR is learnt to have emphasized not to carry out construction of the 'military wire', the border fence as they call it within 150 yards.
"We clarified that although the erection of the fence has to be done beyond 150 yards, due to some geographical constraints and habitation, there are certain patches where the fencing has to be put up within 150 yards. We hope to get a positive response from the BDR during the DG-level meeting slated for April 7 next," the IG said.