‘149 enclave families want Indian citizenship’

The Indo-Bangla border committee has prepared a report on the number of residents in enclaves on both sides of the border who are willing to go to the mainland and take up citizenship there.

Written by Madhuparna Das | Kolkata | Published: April 20, 2012 4:52 am

The Indo-Bangla border committee has prepared a report on the number of residents in enclaves on both sides of the border who are willing to go to the mainland and take up citizenship there.

This represents a step forward in implementing the enclave exchange protocol,which was signed by India and Bangladesh in September 2011.

According to the report,a total of 149 families including 743 residents of eight Indian enclaves of three districts in Bangladesh are willing to come to the mainland of India and want Indian citizenship,whereas no resident of Bangladeshi enclaves in India wants to go to the Bangladeshi mainland.

A senior administrative official of the border committee said,“We have submitted the report of Indian enclaves to the Indian high commission in Bangladesh. The report on the Bangladeshi enclaves will be submitted to the Bangladeshi high commission on Tuesday.”

The India-Bangladesh enclave exchange coordination committee surveyed enclaves on both sides of the border. According to the report,209 residents of three enclaves from Panchagarh district,323 residents of four enclaves from Lalmonirhat district and 11 residents of an enclave from Kurigram district are said to have opted for Indian citizenship.

The Bangladesh Election Commission recently asked its home ministry to give permission to it to give voting rights to the residents of Bangladeshi enclaves in India,a senior official of the poll panel said. However,the exercise involves a huge administrative process for which permission is required from the Ministry of External Affairs and the Ministry of Home Affairs,Government of India,according to a senior official working on the enclave exchange protocol.

Diptiman Sengupta,secretary of the coordination committee said,“We have submitted all the data we have in regard to the number of residents of Indian enclaves who have opted to come to the Indian mainland to the Indian high commission.”

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