India, Bangladesh set up border markets
news Wednesday, February 25, 2015 - 05:30
Agartala, May 21 (IANS) Work for the setting up of the second of the four proposed 'border haats' (bazaars) along the India-Bangladesh border in Tripura began Wednesday. The work for the first 'border haat' is on in southern Tripura's bordering town Sabroom, 135 km south of here. "Work for infrastructural development of the second border haat has begun today (Wednesday) at Kasba (25 km west of Agartala) along the India-Bangladesh border. Both India and Bangladesh have allotted some portion of lands for the border haats," an official said. Senior district administration officials of Tripura's Sepahijala district and Bangladesh's Kasba district were present at a ceremony organised for the purpose. The official said India and Bangladesh have agreed to set up border haats along their border in Tripura, Assam, Mizoram and Meghalaya to boost local trade and economy. One was set up at Meghalaya's border with Bangladesh in 2012. The official said: "The Tripura government has proposed to set up four 'Border Haats' along the border with Bangladesh. Both Indian and Bangladesh government have also agreed to this proposal." India's commerce ministry has been providing Rs.2-3 crore to develop infrastructure in these border haats. The haats are to be set up within five km of the international border. They will sell local agricultural and horticultural products, spices, minor forest products (excluding timber), fresh and dry fish, dairy and poultry products, cottage industry items, wooden furniture, handloom and handicraft items. Trading in these bazaars would be held once or twice a week, and a spending cap of $50 will be imposed per head. No local tax will be imposed on the trading. Both Indian and Bangladeshi currencies will be accepted, the official said. Four north eastern states - Tripura, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Assam - share a 1,880 km border with Bangladesh, while Mizoram, Manipur, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh share a 1,640 km unfenced border with Myanmar.