ENCLAVE EXCHANGE TO BEGIN ON JULY 31 MIDNIGHT
The Land Boundary Agreement (LBA) will be implemented with effect from the midnight of July 31, 2015 ending the prolonged sufferings of the people living in enclaves on both sides of Bangladesh and India.
“Bangladesh and India agree that the Bangladeshi enclaves in India and Indian enclaves in Bangladesh exchanged in pursuant to the 1974 Agreement and 2011
Protocol shall stand transferred to the other with effect from the midnight of July 31, 2015,” according to a document sent by Bangladesh Foreign Ministry here on Monday.
The exchange of Letters on Modalities for Implementation of India-Bangladesh Land Boundary Agreement 1974 and Protocol of 2011 to the Land Boundary Agreement also said, “This shall be referred to as the Appointment Day.”
The travel of the residents who exercise options of moving from an enclave to the mainland of Bangladesh or India, as the case may be, will be arranged by the respective governments through cooperation as mutually agreed.
And it will take place by November 30, 2015 and the entry and exit points would be Haldibari, Burimari and Banglabandha on the Bangladesh-India border.
The entry, stay and secure functioning of the representatives in the joint visit, and setting up camps shall be facilitated by both governments.
Both governments shall facilitate orderly, safe and secure passage to residents of enclaves along with their personal belongings and moveable property to the mainland of Bangladesh or India, as the case may be, including through provision of travel documents.
Prior to the Appointed Day, representatives of the two governments shall conduct joint visits to the enclaves.
The purposes of the visit are include informing the residents of the enclaves, including their rights relating to nationality and citizenship, identifying the residents who wish to retain the nationality they hold prior to actual transfer of territory.
Another purpose of the joint visit is collection of data, including photographs, required for issue of entry passes or any other document to facilitate the travel and entry of an enclave resident choosing to retain his original nationality.
The existing mechanism of Bangladesh-India Joint Boundary Working Group will finalise all further details in this regard.
The same mechanism will be used to address any issue that may arise after the transfer for the next five years till June 2020.
Issues pertaining to modalities to facilitate sale of immovable properties and remittance of such sales proceeds will be addressed by the JBWG at an early date.
Bangladesh and India shall print, sign at plenipotentiary level and exchange the interim strip maps of the un-demarcated sectors prepared as provided in article 2 of the 2011 protocol by the appointed day.
The ground demarcation of the boundary based on these interim strip maps will be completed by June 30, 2016.
With overwhelming support from lawmakers, the Indian Lok Sabha last month unanimously ratified the long-awaited Land Boundary Agreement (LBA) with Bangladesh, taking this to the end of a 41-year journey.
The India-Bangladesh Agreement was signed on May 16, 1974 and an additional protocol was inked in September, 2011 during the then Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Dhaka.
JUNE 10, 2015