Issue of Junge pillar PP- 1 of Bhadrapur
The Nepalese people believe that Junge pillars are the main boundary monuments erected on the boundary line between Nepal and India. But field level Indo-Nepal joint border survey team regarded the Junge as the reference pillar (RP) while they were working on the Mechi riverine sector during December 1995.
The team was demarcating the then course of the river Mechi with the help of a map of 1874 AD that bears the heading and internal details on Persian script. They started to erect new boundary pillars in the Bhadrapur area of Jhapa district ignoring the Junge pillars, the existing main BPs. By this action, the boundary line has been shifted towards Nepal nearly one kilometre west of Junge permanent pillar (as it is inscribed PP-1) and Nepalese territory has been encroached. As a result, half of the compound of Bhadrapur High School came under Indian territory. This caused much hue and cry not only among the local people of Bhadrapur but also other parts of Nepal including the capital city and it became the national issue in 1996. In the mean time Bhadrapur municipality issued a white paper highlighting the issue and problem. Ministers, political leaders, MPs, government officials, members of social organizations, research institutions and intellectual council visited the area. An advocate, Balkrishna Neupane filed a writ-petition in the Supreme Court on the Mechi border dispute.
After all these activities, Chief District Officer of Jhapa made a public notification on 21 March 1998 that it will be examined by the Nepalese survey team at first and the matter will be put in the next joint meeting of Nepal-India survey team. At the joint meeting it was decided that the issue would be resolved in a spirit agreeable to both the sides after the joint field inspection. The joint survey team worked along the border of Jhapa district during field season of 1999-2000 as well, but the problem remained as it is. As a result, neither the status of masonry Junge permanent pillar (PP) nor newly erected subsidiary pillar has been determined. And this is the main issue concerning the status of Junge pillar.
Description of Junge pillar
Junge pillars are the masonry pillars, the construction of which started was just after the Treaty of Sugauli-1816, with a view to demarcate the border between Nepal and India. It is regarded as the main boundary pillar with its shape and size. The dimension of Junge pillar is 2.2 metres in height and its diameter is 3 metres in round shape. Its foundation is 1 mtr deep under a rectangular platform of 2 mtr by 1 mtr. The pillar is constructed with bricks, mortar of brick-powder and limestone and glued materials. It is a pre-cast monument homogenously round in shape with its top round and smooth slope. A ditch normally 2.5 mtr deep and 1.5 mtr wide is dug around the pillar to protect it from man, animal and other objects. It is painted with lime water to be seen distinctly from far off distances. In the explanation index of the map entitled British Boundary on the Northern Frontier of Zillah of Poornneea in North Behar-AD 1818, the dimensions (shaft, decretion, foundation, width, depth etc.) of Junge pillar have been mentioned with a picturesque drawing. Close to this drawing a sentence “pillars of Masonry along the Boundary connection the Ditch at the angle” has been written. The people believe that Junge pillars are the historical monuments of the border between Nepal and India. These are the pre-cast pillars having its serial number inscribed on the upper portion, as the pillar PP-1 is located east of Bhadrapur, Jhapa district on the way to Galgalia railway station, India.
Masonry (Junge) Pillar PP-1 of Bhadrapur works as the Tri-junction point of Bihar-West Bengal-Nepal Border. Unfortunately, India regards this Junge Pillar as a reference pillar, not the main boundary pillar. The debate between Nepal and India was raised till 2000. But this issue has been stranded.
Recently, Special Security Bureau or Sashastra Sena Bal of India has occupied this Junge Pillar and they have constructed thatched house ignoring the area of No-man’s Land.