Delhi renews Teesta water pledge | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, February 09, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, February 09, 2019

Delhi renews Teesta water pledge

Dhaka seeks Indian push for Rohingya repatriation; two FMs aim to take ties to new high; 4 deals signed

India would work for early signing of the long-pending Teesta water sharing agreement, the country's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj yesterday assured visiting Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen.

She said this after Momen requested early resolution of the issue during the 5th meeting of the Joint Consultative Commission (JCC) between Bangladesh and India held at the Jawaharlal Nehru Bhavan in New Delhi.

A press release issued by the foreign ministry in Dhaka said Momen also sought India's cooperation in ensuring early repatriation of the hundreds of thousands Rohingya refugees, who fled Myanmar after a brutal military crackdown in 2017.

Sushma appreciated the humanitarian gesture of Bangladesh in supporting the large number of displaced people and assured Momen of India's continued support for safe, speedy and sustainable return of the refugees to Myanmar, according to another press release of the JCC in New Delhi.

Momen conveyed Bangladesh's gratitude for the humanitarian assistance provided by India since September 2017 to help meet the needs of the refugees.

The two ministers witnessed the signing of four MoUs between India's National Centre for Good Governance and Bangladesh's Ministry of Public Administration regarding the mid-career training of 1,800 Bangladeshi civil servants in India, cooperation between India's Medicinal Plant Board and Bangladesh health department, Bangladesh's Anti-corruption Commission and Central Bureau of Investigation of India, and Hiranandani Group of India and Economic Zones Authority of Bangladesh.

The two ministers also discussed many other bilateral issues.

They expressed satisfaction that the countries are working closer than ever in sectors, ranging from security and border management to mutually-beneficial trade and investment flows, power and energy, development partnership, transport connectivity, culture and people-to-people contacts.

They welcomed the fact that the relationship was now broadening to include blue economy, cyber security, outer space, nuclear energy, IT and electronics.

The two ministers tasked their accompanying officials to develop a forward looking roadmap for bilateral cooperation to make the partnership irreversible. In particular, they desired that partnership-building efforts should be enhanced in a manner commensurate with commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh's liberation.

Sushma appreciated that Momen decided to make India the destination of his first visit abroad as foreign minister.

In her opening remarks, Sushma underscored that trust and partnership are the bedrock of understanding between India and Bangladesh. She highlighted that both the countries are two of the fastest growing economies in the world and India stands in full support of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's development agenda.

Our New Delhi correspondent reports, 1,500 Bangladeshi civil servants have already been trained in India after the signing of an MoU five years ago.

Under new deal, 1,800 officials will be trained at India's National Centre for Good Governance over the next six years, an official statement said.

Under the MoU between Hiranandani Group and export zones authorities, the Indian company will develop the economic zone on 110 acres of land near Mongla port in Bagerhat. The company will develop the infrastructure, including land development, roads and utility lines suitable for factories. It will also bring Indian investors to the zone.

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