India and Bangladesh on Friday inked a key agreement aimed at enhancing quality of border management and ensuring cross-frontier security through measures like joint vigils to deal with human trafficking and smuggling of drugs and weapons.
The comprehensive border management agreement was signed in the presence of visiting home minister P Chidambaram and his Bangladeshi counterpart Sahara Khatun.
"We have just signed the agreement -- Border Management Coordination Plan for a comprehensive and joint management of all frontier issues," Khatun told a joint news conference with Chidambaram after their nearly two-and-a-half-hour meeting, which came ahead of the September visit of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Chidambaram said the agreement -- signed by Border Guard Bangladesh's director general maj gen Anwar Hossain and his Indian counterpart from the Border Security Force (BSF) Raman Srivastava -- was expected to resolve all outstanding frontier issues, including combating cross-border crimes.
"The agreement will enhance quality of border management as well as ensure (cross-border) security," he said.
India and Bangladesh share 4,096 km border, of which 6.1 kilometres is still un-demarcated.
Officials here familiar with the process said the deal intended to enforce joint frontier vigils from certain border points against cross-border crimes like human trafficking and weapons and drug smuggling.
The two countries had last week concluded a joint headcount in 162 enclaves on both sides of their borders.