Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large

History of India-Bangladesh territory divisions

The chit mahals were created out of territorial divisions dating back to the 17th century.

The chit mahals were created out of territorial divisions dating back to the 17th century.

First, as the Mughal dynasty conquered much of india, several landed estates in East India remained under the control of the princely state of Cooch Behar. Similarly, some landowners in Cooch Behar allied themselves with Mughal India.

This odd situation persisted when Cooch Behar remained independent through the British Raj. When the subcontinent was partitioned in 1947, Cooch Behar chose to join India, but the new border did nothing to resolve the dilemma of the enclaves.

This process has even resulted in the world's only counter-counter-enclave: a two-acre plot of India embedded within a patch of Bangladesh, which exists within a patch of India, which in turn sits on Bangladeshi soil.

In 1971, East Pakistan won its independence and renamed itself Bangladesh. A land boundary agreement in 1974 proposed a resolution, but its measures remained unimplemented, and the status of the enclaves and their residents continued to be in diplomatic limbo.

Back to the top

More articles

Editor's Picks

 Fatema holds a picture of her son Nurul Karim as she poses for a photograph in front of her slum house in Savar. Fatema lost her son Nurul Karim and her daughter Arifa, who were working on the fifth floor of Rana Plaza when it collapsed on April 24, 2013. All photos Andrew Biraj / Reuters

These women know the real price of cheap high street fashion

Survivors of the world's worst garment factory accident, struggle to rebuild their lives from the rubble of the Rana Plaza collapse as Bangladesh prepares to mark the first anniversary of the disaster.

 Supporters of unseen India’s main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party prime ministerial candidate and Chief Minister of the western Indian state of Gujarat, Narendra Modi, wave as he arrives to file his election nomination papers in Varanasi. Sanjay Kanojia / AFP Photo

Best photography from around the world April 24

The National View's photo editors pick the best of the day from around the world

 Iranian workers at the Iran Khodro auto plant in Tehran on March 18. Maryam Rahmanian for The National

Iran’s love of cars survives devastating sanctions

Sanctions and energy subsidy reductions might have hurt the Iranian automotive industry. But car makers at one factory are still optimistic, Yeganeh Salehi reports from Tehran

 Iranian President Hassan Rouhani greeted by university students as he leaves Sistan University in Sistan and Baluchestan’s provincial capital of Zahedan on Tuesday, April 15, 2014. Maryam Rahmanian for The National

In Iran’s most troubled province, Rouhani hears pleas for change

Hassan Rounani aims to connect with residents of far-flung Sistan and Baluchestan province.

 Prince Bandar bin Sultan in Riyadh on March 3, 2007. Hassan Ammar / AFP Photo

Saudi Prince Bandar promised a victory he could not deliver

Saudi Arabia's controversial intelligence chief stepped down this week after rumours that his policies on Syria had fallen out of favour.

 Aiza Tonida puts out laundry amid the ruins of her parents home in Leyte province that was destroyed when Typhoon Haiyan struck central Philippines on November 8, 2013. Joey Reyna for The National

Filipinos seek Middle East jobs to rebuild lives after Haiyan

Work in the GCC seen as only hope for thousands left homeless and jobless after devastating storm in November.


To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National