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Border fence victims stage demo in Agartala
Agartala, May 11 (Agencies):
Published on 11 May. 2011 11:40 PM IST
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Hundreds of people displaced from the India-Bangladesh border in northeastern state of Tripura due to barbed-wire fencing held a rally in Agartala demanding their rehabilitation.
Subal Bhowmick, president of Simanta Bhumi Suraksha Committee (Committee for Protection of Soil in Border), said on Wednesday that the state government was least bothered about the problems of the displaced families.
“We have gathered here to protest the displacement of people from the land due to border fencing and other reasons. Today’s agitation programme is part of ‘jail bharo’ (fill up the jail) and civil disobedience and we demand for proper rehabilitation of those displaced and it is part of our 19 charter of demands,” said Bhowmik.
Due to the India-Bangladesh barbed-wire fencing, 8500 families lost their land, farms, ponds, including places of worship like temple, mosques. Their entire belongings have gone to the other part of the barbed fence.
“If the government continues to ignore their problems, then our agitation will take a much unpleasant turn,” Bhowmik warned.
The demonstrators who were stopped at the Gandhi point near Agartala Circuit House scuffle with police before they protested in front of the Governor House.
They demanded the resettlement of 8,500 families, whom they say have been affected by the erection of barbed-wire fencing along the country’s border with Bangladesh.
Earlier on Feb 3, the protestors had staged a 13-day hunger strike to draw the attention of the state government, which shifts the entire responsibility to the federal government. The major demands of the committee include publication of names of the 8,500 displaced families, fencing along zero-point to save the Indian soil, government employment for each affected family and allotment of alternative land for them.
Tripura shares 856 km long border with Bangladesh of which 675 km had been fenced to check trans-border movement of militants, prevent infiltration and prevent border crimes.
Similar fencing is also being erected all along the 4,095-km India-Bangladesh border in West Bengal, Assam, Meghalaya and Mizoram.

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