GUWAHATI, Sept 5 � On the eve of Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh�s visit to Dhaka, a team of the Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) today visited the international border area in Mankachar and demanded that Assam�s land should never be handed over to Bangladesh in the name of solving the border disputes.
AGP president Chandra Mohan Patowary, who led the AGP team to the international border area, told The Assam Tribune that India should make efforts to ensure that the portion of Assam�s land in possession of Bangladesh is returned.
Patowary said that the Prime Minister represents Assam in the Rajya Sabha, while, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, who got an opportunity to be a member of the Indian delegation, should think about the interests of Assam. He said that the West Bengal Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee refused to accompany the Prime Minister to Dhaka because she felt that the interests of her state could be compromised and the Assam Chief Minister should also take a strong stand in the interest of Assam.
Patowary said that 579 bighas of Assam�s land in the Baraibari area in Mankachar is in adverse possession of Bangladesh and Bangladeshi nationals cultivated the land right up to the fencing in violation of the agreements between the two countries. He said that the people of Assam still have land pattas of that area and immediate steps should be taken to ensure that the land is returned to Assam.
The AGP president said that one Sirajul Haque still possesses the land settlement document of that area. Haque now lives in another village but he has in his possession the settlement order given by the Deputy Commissioner of Dhubri district way back in 1975. Similarly, several other Indian nationals have documents to prove that they had land in the Baraibari area and their land should be handed over to them, he added.
Meanwhile, the AGP members today staged demonstrations in all the district headquarters of the state and sent telegrams to the Prime Minister opposing handing over of Assam�s land to Bangladesh. The party also demanded that Bangladesh should be asked to accept the Bangladeshi nationals sought to be deported.