The India–Bangladesh enclaves, also known as the chitmahals (Bengali: ছিটমহল chhit mohol, chitmohol and sometimes called pasha enclaves, were the enclaves along the Bangladesh–India border, in Bangladesh and the Indian states of West Bengal, Tripura, Assam and Meghalaya. Within the main body of Bangladesh were 102 enclaves of Indian territory, which in turn contained 21 Bangladeshi counter-enclaves, one of which contained an Indian counter-counter-enclave – the world's only third-order enclave. Within the Indian mainland were 71 Bangladeshi enclaves, containing 3 Indian counter-enclaves. A joint census in 2010 found 51,549 people residing in these enclaves: 37,334 in Indian enclaves within Bangladesh and 14,215 in Bangladeshi enclaves within India.
The Prime Ministers of India and Bangladesh signed the Land Boundary Agreement in 1974 to exchange enclaves and simplify their international border. A revised version of the agreement was adopted by the two countries on 7 May 2015, when the Parliament of India passed the 100th Amendment to the Constitution of India. Under this agreement, which was ratified on 6 June 2015, India received 51 Bangladeshi enclaves (covering 7,110 acres (2,880 ha)) in the Indian mainland, while Bangladesh received 111 Indian enclaves (covering 17,160 acres (6,940 ha)) in the Bangladeshi mainland. The enclave residents were allowed to either continue residing at their present location or move to the country of their choice. The exchange of enclaves was to be implemented in phases between 31 July 2015 and 30 June 2016. The enclaves were exchanged at midnight on 31 July 2015 and the transfer of enclave residents was completed on 30 November 2015. After the Land Boundary Agreement, India lost around 40 square kilometres (15 sq mi) to Bangladesh.
Since the exchange of territory took place, the only remaining enclave is Dahagram–Angarpota, an exclave of Bangladesh.
India is divided undivided India and Pakistan, called the establishment of the independent state in 1947 AD at the Radcliffe map division emerged from the enclave. The territory of one country remains part of another country. This creates an unbearable humanitarian problem. There were 162 enclaves in the two neighboring countries. Of these, 111 enclaves in India were within Bangladesh. And 51 enclaves of Bangladesh were inside India. The population living in these enclaves was about 51,000. According to the 2011 census, the population living in enclaves of India inside Bangladesh was 36,000 and the population of enclaves in Bangladesh inside India was 14,000. There were enclaves of the two countries with 24,026 acres of land. The amount of land in India was 16,158 acres. The amount of land in the enclave of Bangladesh was 8,110 acres. Most of the Indian enclaves were in the north-western part of Bangladesh. Of these, there were 59 Indian enclaves in Lalmonirhat , 36 in Panchagarh , 12 in Kurigram and 4 in Nilphamari . On the other hand, 51 enclaves of Bangladesh were located in the Indian state of West Bengal. Of these, 48 were located in Cooch Behar and 4 in Jalpaiguri districts.
Some parts of the Koch Raja's zamindari in the state of Cooch Behar were located in various police stations outside the state at Panchagarh, Dimla, Debiganj, Patgram, Hatibandha, Lalmonirhat, Phulbari and Bhurungamari. After the partition of India, those eight police stations became part of East Pakistan . And Cooch Behar merged with West Bengal . As a result, some parts of India came to Bangladesh. And some parts of Bangladesh go to India. These lands were enclaves.
To determine the boundaries of the problem
In 1947, Lord Louis Mountbatten planned to draw the border between Bengal and Punjab . According to his plan, a demarcation commission was formed that year, headed by British lawyer Cyril Radcliffe. Radcliffe came to India from London on 7 July 1947. In just six weeks, on 13 August, he gave the final report on the demarcation. Three days later, on 16 August, the border map was released to the public.
Such a decision was taken in a hurry without any consideration and the issue of demarcation was not properly settled. There are allegations that the inaction of the commission members and the zamindars, nawabs, local politicians and tea garden owners have influenced the demarcation of the country in their own interest. And after the division of the subcontinent by inheritance, the two countries are carrying this problem. According to the Nehru-Nun Chakti of 1956, India would get the northern half of Berubari and the southern half and adjoining areas of Bangladesh. Although the initiative was taken to demarcate Berubari as per the agreement, it fell on deaf ears due to non-cooperation of India. As a result, the southern half of Berubari and its enclaves have not been addressed.
Then after the Mujib-Indira agreement of 1974 , the two countries started compiling separate lists of enclaves. But there is a discrepancy in the list of the two parties. Later on April 9, 1997 it was finalized that there were 111 enclaves of India inside Bangladesh and 51 enclaves of Bangladesh within India.
It is pertinent to mention here that although the Nehru-Nunn Agreement signed in 1957 mentioned the exchange of enclaves, the then President of India sought the opinion of the Supreme Court on Article 143 of the Constitution of that country. The court then said that the matter should be settled through amendment of the constitution. Amendments to the Constitution of India, on behalf of the pretext of the census has been delayed exchange of enclaves.
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