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CONTROVERSIAL TIN BIGHA CORRIDOR AND BHARATIYA JANATA PARTY

The Tin [or Teen] Bigha Corridor (Bengali: তিনতিঘা কতিডি) is a strip of land
belonging to India on the West Bengal–Bangladesh border, which in September,
2011, was leased to Bangladesh so that it can access its Dahagram–Angarpota
enclaves According to the Indira Gandhi-Sheikh Mujibur Rahman treaty of
1974, India and Bangladesh were to hand over the sovereignty of the Tin Bigha
Corridor (178 x 85 sq m) and South Berubari (7.39 km
2
) to each other, thereby
allowing access to the Dahagram–Angarpota enclaves and the Indian enclaves
adjacent to South Berubari. The total area of South Berubari Union No. 12 is
22.58 km
2
. of which 11.29 km. was to go to Bangladesh. The area of the four
Cooch Behar enclaves which would also have to go to Bangladesh was
6.84 km
2
. making the total area to be transferred 18.13 km
2
. The population of
the area including the four enclaves to be transferred, as per 1967 data, was
90% Hindu. The Bangladesh enclaves, Dahagram and Angorpota, were to be
transferred to India. Their total area was 18.68 km
2
. and as per 1967 data
more than 80% of their population was Muslim. If this exchange had gone
through, it would have meant a change of nationality for the population or
migration of the population from Dahagram and Angorpota and South Berubari
Union No. 12 and consequent serious rehabilitation problems. There were in
any case major agitations by the people of Berubari protesting against the
transfer.
After 1971, India proposed to Bangladesh that India may continue to retain the
southern half of South Berubari Union No. 12 and the adjacent enclaves and,
in exchange, Dahagram and Angorpota may be retained by Bangladesh. As part
of the package a strip of land would be leased in perpetuity by India to
Bangladesh, giving her access to Dahagram & Angorpota in order to enable her
to exercise sovereignty on these two enclaves. This was accepted by Bangladesh
as part of a carefully constructed Land Boundary Agreement signed by Prime
Minister Indira Gandhi and Prime Minister Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in May
1974. The Berubari dispute was thus finally resolved by Article 1.14 of the
Agreement which stated:
"India will retain the southern half of South Berubari Union No. 12 and the
adjacent enclaves, measuring an area of 2.64 square miles approximately, and
in exchange Bangladesh will retain th Dahagram and Angorpota enclaves. India
will lease in perpetuity to Bangladesh an area of 178 metres x 85 metres near
'Tin Bigha' to connect Dahagram with Panbari Mouza (P.S. Patgram) of
Bangladesh.
The team found widespread confusion and anxiety prevailing among the people
because they had not been taken into confidence in this matter. The people are
agitated because they rightly feel that the government of India has legitimised
encroachment of Indian territories by Bangladesh, which amounts to formally
transferring land illegally occupied by erstwhile East Pakistan and later
Bangladesh over the years. Apart from Assam and West Bengal, there are
anxieties in Tripura and Mizoram.
The BJP demands the government place the complete details of the land
transfer protocols with all relevant survey maps before parliament. The party
wants a comprehensive discussion in the winter session of parliament before
the government takes any steps to part with Indian territories. As per BJP an
improved relationship with Bangladesh is much needed but it cannot be at the
cost of the livelihood and properties of Indian citizens living in the affected
border regions.
Against the agreement between Ind-Ban regarding Teen Bigha , on 27
th
April
,12 West Bengal BJP Legal and Legislative Cell under the Leadership of The
State President Mr. Samir Paul, Vice-President Mr. Gopen Sinha, General
Secretary Mr. Debjit Sarkar and Executive Member Mr. Subhasish Sen, filed a
deputation before the District Magistrate, Cooch Behar Stating inter alia :
whether the Union Govt. can sign any international treaty or renew the treaty
by giving right to the Bangladeshi Nationals to make ingress and egress their
enclave through the Indian own Land for 24 hours which on the other hand
override the constitutional right of free movement of the citizen of India or not?

Every politicians who have no constitutional responsibility are asking and
repeating about Indira-Mujib treaty of 1974 but not recollecting the landmark
judgment of Supreme Court in a constitutional bench comprising eight judges
arising out of the move of the then President of India Rajendra Prasad seeking
the opinion of the supreme court after the Nehru-Noon agreement of 1958 in
exercise of the powers conferred upon him by clause (1) of Art.143 of the
Constitution referring three questions to the Supreme Court for consideration
and report thereon which were as follows;-
1. Is any Legislative action necessary for the implementation of the
Agreement relating to Berubari Union?
2. If so, is a law of Parliament relatable to Article 3 of the constitution
sufficient for the purpose or is an amendment of the constitution in
accordance with article 368 of the constitution necessary, in addition
or in the alternative?
3. Is a law of Parliament relatable to article 3 of the constitution
sufficient for implementation of the Agreement relating to Exchange of
Enclaves or is an amendment of the constitution in accordance with
article 368 of the constitution necessary for the purpose, in addition
or in the alternative?

wherein Supreme Court barred the Government from handing over any
territory like berubari just after making law relatable to Art.3 of the
constitution for the purpose of implementing the Agreement and law necessary
to implement the Agreement has to be passed under Art.368.views of the
Supreme Court was that acting under Article 368 Parliament may make a Law
to give effect to, and implement, the Agreement in question covering the cession
of a part of Berubari Union no.12 as well as some of the cooch behar enclaves
which by exchange are given to Pakistan. Parliament may, however, if it so
chooses, passes a law amending Art.3 of the constitution so as to cover cases of
cession of the territory of India in favor of a foreign state. If such a law passed
then Parliament may be competent to make law under the amended Art.3 to
implement the Agreement in question. On the other hand, if the necessary law
is passed under Art.368 itself that alone would be sufficient to implement the
Agreement and if the law in regard to the implementation of the Agreement is
to be passed under Art.368 it has to satisfy the requirements prescribed by the
said Article. The bill has to be passed in each House by a majority of the total
membership of the House and by a majority of not less than two- thirds of the
House present and voting; that is to say, it should obtain the concurrence of a
substantial section of the House Which may normally mean the consent of the
major parties of the House, and that is a safeguard provided by the Article in
matters of this kind. Legal and Legislative cell, BJP, West Bengal think that
politicians should not deal with the motherland as the subject matter of their
political manifesto exercising the right to assure the foreign country for
handover specially considering the fact that limitation thereto has already been
framed by the Apex Court in terms of the treaty entered into by both the
parties for handing over the own land of our country. There is no value of the
treaty entered into by both the parties on 24
th
September 2011 until and
unless the same is passed before each House by majority of the total
membership of the House and by a majority of not less than two-thirds of the
House present and voting it should obtain the concurrence of a substantial
section of the House.

Legal and Legislative cell, B.J.P, West Bengal reminded the administration
many times to consider the point of constitutional unfettered right of a citizen
of India which he/she belong may be infringed if Government of India signs or
enters into treaty or agreement giving the right of ingress and egress by the
Bangladeshi Nationals through Indian territory for their enclave at Dahagram
and Angarpota whenever the said agreement has not been placed before the
parliament in the light of Article of 368 of the Constitution of India in view of
the landmark judgment of Hon’ble Supreme Court of India passed in 1960.