Maldives Minicoy Mahl Dhivehi
Minicoy Maliku     Minicoy Lighthouse


Many Maldivians privately harbour territorial designs on Minicoy. This sentiment found public expression in a Maldive ministerial speech in 1982.

Some Maldivians claim that the British Government obtained permission from the King of the Maldives to build the Minicoy Lighthouse. There are no such records in Maldive history. When the Lighthouse was built in the 1880s, Minicoy was under the sovereign jurisdiction of the Ali Raja of Cannanore, with de facto administration vested in the Imperial Government of India.

 

AGREEMENT BETWEEN HER MAJESTY'S GOVERNMENT IN THE UNITED KINGDOM OF GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND AND THE GOVERNMENT OF INDIA ON THE TRANSFER OF MINICOY LIGHTHOUSE

London, 19 September 1963

An Agreement made on the Nineteenth day of September, 1963, between the Minister of Transport of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (hereinafter called the 'Minister of Transport') of the one part and the Government of India of the other part;

WHEREAS the lighthouse on Minicoy Island (hereinafter referred to as 'the Lighthouse') has been administered by the Government of India since the second day of April, nineteen hundred and fifty-six;

AND WHEREAS it is desired to conclude an Agreement for the purpose of the transfer of lighthouse and the sum held in the General Lighthouse Fund (hereinafter referred to as "the Fund") in connection therewith to the Government of India by the Minister of Transport, it is hereby agreed as follows :



Article I    
  a- The Minister of Transport hereby transfers to the Government of India all the interest held by him in the lighthouse and' in the appurtenances thereto and, henceforth, all the rights, directly or indirectly, exercised, possessed, asserted or claimed by the Minister of Transport in respect of the lighthouse shall be vested in and exercised, possessed, asserted or claimed exclusively by the Government of India.
  b- The transfer includes the right of property in the lighthouse structure, other public buildings whether permanent or temporary, fortifications, barracks, machinery, equipment and any other articles or accessories used on the Minicoy Island for the lighthouse, any records, papers or documents now on Minicoy Island relating to the lighthouse, and any rights, franchises and privileges belonging to the Minister of Transport in respect of the lighthouse.
Article II                                            
  The Minister of Transport shall pay within a period of two months from the date of this Agreement to the Government of India out of the Fund the following sums, that is to say :
  a- such sum as the Minister of Transport, with the consent of the Treasury, may determine to be equivalent to the excess of the proportion of the Fund attributable to light dues in respect of the lighthouse for the period ending with the second day of April, nineteen hundred and fifty-six, over the aggregate of the expenses in connection with the Lighthouse relating to that period and falling to be paid out of the Fund;
  b- a sum equal to interest at the rate of four per cent per annum on the sum payable by virtue of the foregoing paragraph for the period beginning with the third day of April, nineteen hundred and fifty-six, and ending with the day on which the last mentioned sum is paid;
  c- all the sums carried to the Fund and attributable to light dues in respect of the lighthouse after the second day of April, nineteen hundred and fifty-six;
  d- in respect of each of the sums referred to in the last foregoing paragraph, a sum equal to interest at the rate of four per cent per annum thereon for the period beginning with the relevant day and ending with the day on which the sum so referred 5 is paid.
  In this Article :
    i- In paragraph (a) the reference to expenses falling to be paid out of the Fund includes a reference to expenses which fell to be paid out of the Bases Lights Fund [the balance of which was transferred to the Fund by the Merchant Shipping (Mercantile Marine Fund) Act, 18981, and
    ii- In paragraph (d) 'relevant day' means in relation to a sum referred to in paragraph (c) of this Article, the thirtieth day of September falling in the year in which that sum was carried to the Fund, and for the purposes of this paragraph a year shall be treated as a period of twelve months ending with the thirty-first day of March.
Article III                                                             
  The Minister of Transport shall pay pensions or other contributions in lieu of pensions in respect of lighthouse service staff who  had retired  or whose  claims  had  become due  by the second day of April, nineteen hundred and fifty-six.

In witness whereof  the Minister of Transport  has caused  his Official seal to be affixed  and Mohammed Ali  Currim Chagla High Commissioner for India, London, on behalf of the Government  of India has  hereunto set   his hand  the  day and year   first  above written.

The official  seal  of the Minister of Transport  was hereto affixed  in the presence  of: 

Ernst Marple,
The Minister of Transport.
SEAL

No. in Seal Register C. 8065
 

M.C. Chagla
High Commissioner  for India.

Signed  by the above  named  in the presence of:

US Bajpai
September 19,1963.


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