AGP seeks support against India-Bangladesh land deal

Guwahati, March 22 (IANS) Assam’s Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) has sought cooperation from opposition parties in parliament to oppose the 119th Amendment Bill for the land swap deal between India and Bangladesh.

AGP president and former Assam chief minister Prafulla Kumar Mahanta said this while addressing mediapersons here Friday.
He added that the party had met national leaders of almost all political parties and sought their support in opposing the proposed bill, which is likely to be introduced soon.
“We have been opposing the land swap deal since the beginning. It is not only against the interests of the people of Assam but is also a threat to national integration. When the state is reeling under rising influx of illegal migrants from Bangladesh, the government is handing over a huge chunks of our land to the neighbouring country,” Mahanta said.
Mahanta and some of his colleagues met leaders of national parties like the BJP, CPI, CPI-M, Janata Dal-United, Biju Janata Dal, Samajwadi Party, Akali Dal and others in New Delhi and discussed the issue with them.
“We have sought the support of all these parties. They have assured us that they would support AGP MPs, who will oppose the bill in parliament,” said Mahanta.
The Constitution Amendment Bill for the land swap deal was cleared by the union cabinet last month.
“The bill was listed for introduction in the Rajya Sabha yesterday (Thursday). However, it was not introduced as we had obtained support against the bill,” said Mahanta.
Mahanta said that India will lose about 10,000 acres of land to Bangladesh under the deal. Most of the land is part of northeastern states of Assam, Meghalaya and Tripura.