Indian External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar on Saturday (January 20, 2024) said Bangladesh-India relations are growing from strength to strength. "Look forward to receiving him (Dr Hasan Mahmud) in Delhi soon," he said as he met his Bangladesh counterpart Dr Hasan Mahmud on the sidelines of the 19th NAM Summit. Jaishankar said he is glad to meet with his new Bangladesh counterpart, Hasan Mahmud in Kampala, Uganda. "Congratulated him on his appointment and wished him all success," said the Indian External Affairs Minister. Both the ministers discussed various issues of mutual interests and ways to carry forward the existing excellent bilateral relations between the two countries, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. They also discussed the upcoming visit of Bangladesh Foreign Minister to New Delhi. Hasan Mahmud led the Bangladesh delegation to the 19th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) held on January 19-20. He will also lead the third South Summit of the G77 and China scheduled to be held on January 21-22. Read more: Every country should take its responsibilities towards refugees very seriously: David Cameron Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen, Bangladesh Permanent Representative to the UN Muhammad A Muhith and Bangladesh High Commissioner to Kenya and Uganda, among others, are accompanying the Foreign Minister. Foreign Minister Hasan Mahmud is scheduled to leave for New Delhi, India on February 7 – the first bilateral visit by the minister after his appointment – to further strengthen Bangladesh-India relations. “It’s likely to be a three-day visit,” he told reporters at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on January 18, noting that the agenda of the visit is yet to be finalised. The Foreign Minister said he will be visiting the country at the invitation of Indian External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar. Asked whether he will have a meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the visit, Mahmud said, “It is too early to say.” Jaishankar, earlier, invited his Bangladesh counterpart Dr Hasan Mahmud to visit New Delhi at a mutually convenient time. Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Pranay Verma extended the invitation on behalf of the Indian External Affairs Minister on Monday. The Foreign Minister accepted the invitation and told him that he would visit Delhi soon. Read more: FM Hasan meets his Palestinian counterpart
Bangladesh's Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi have said they look forward to getting negotiations going on a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) for their two countries, covering trade in goods, services, and protecting and promoting investment. Expressing satisfaction at the implementation of development cooperation projects, they looked forward to the joint inauguration of three projects (Agartala-Akhaura Rail Link, Unit-II of the Maitri Power Plant and Khulna-Mongla Rail Link) at a convenient date later. The two leaders had a bilateral meeting in New Delhi on Friday (September 08, 2023). PM Hasina is visiting India as its guest country to participate in the G-20 Leaders Summit on 9-10 September 2023. Read more: Hasina, Modi agree to resolve outstanding bilateral issues through talks With regard to the regional situation, Prime Minister Modi expressed appreciation of the burden shouldered by Bangladesh in hosting over a million persons displaced from Rakhine State in Myanmar, and conveyed India's constructive and positive approach to support solutions towards safe and sustainable repatriation of the refugees. The Indian side welcomed the Indo-Pacific Outlook announced by Bangladesh recently, according to the Ministry of External Affairs (Indian Foreign Ministry). The leaders agreed to continue working together to intensify their wide-ranging engagement. The two leaders discussed the entire gamut of bilateral cooperation including political and security cooperation, border management, trade and connectivity, water resources, power and energy, development cooperation, cultural and people to people ties. Current developments in the region and cooperation in the multilateral fora were also discussed. Read more: Dhaka, New Delhi sign 3 MoUs after Hasina-Modi talks They welcomed the operationalization of the Agreement on the use of the Chattogram and Mongla Ports and commissioning of the India-Bangladesh Friendship Pipeline. They also expressed appreciation for operationalization of settlement of bilateral trade in INR (rupee) and encouraged the business community on both sides to utilize the mechanism. Hasina thanked Modi for the hospitality of the government and people of India, as the two leaders looked forward to continuing interactions at all levels. Read more: Hasina, Modi didn't talk about Bangladesh election: Momen
Outgoing Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Vikram Kumar Doraiswami has said Bangladesh-India relationship is a “train” that must keep moving to do more great things together. “That energy needs to be carried through,” he said, adding that there are many great things that the two countries have achieved together in the past decade which should be celebrated. Speaking at a reception at the High Commission of India in Dhaka last (September 15, 2022) evening, Doraiswami said people of Bangladesh and India are connected through hearts and souls; and it is stronger than blood relations. Doraiswami said Bangladesh-India relationship will have challenges but it is a relationship built with the connection between hearts. Also read: Doraiswami: PM Hasina’s India visit "extremely successful" with "strong deliverables" The Indian diplomat said, the most important aspect of Bangladesh-India ties is: “We are your relatives and you are our relatives.” Therefore, he said, expectations from each other can sometimes be unrealistic. The High Commissioner urged his friends in Bangladesh to always look at the glass as “half full”. “We have, of course, things that we need to do together,” he said. Also read: Masud Bin Momen bids farewell to Doraiswami Doraiswami said there are many kinds of honour that one has in life but serving in a country like Bangladesh – the country that is of such significance and importance to India — has doubled the honour. Current and former ministers, opposition leaders, business leaders, diplomats, civil society members, artistes and senior journalists joined the reception hosted by the High Commission to say goodbye. High Commissioner Doraiswami is likely to leave Dhaka on September 18, wrapping up his “engaging” tenure in Bangladesh. He has been appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to the United Kingdom and is expected to take up the assignment shortly. Pranay Kumar to Arrive in Dhaka Soon Pranay Kumar Verma, who most recently served as Ambassador of India to Vietnam, has been appointed the next High Commissioner of India to Bangladesh. He is expected to arrive in Dhaka on September 21 and formally take up the assignment shortly after submitting his credentials to President Abdul Hamid. Pranay Verma joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1994 and has held diplomatic assignments in Hong Kong, San Francisco, Beijing, Kathmandu and Washington DC. He has served as the Joint Secretary of the East Asia Division at the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi since June 2017. Earlier, he also served as the Joint Secretary for external relations at the Department of Atomic Energy looking after India’s nuclear diplomacy.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said that her recent visit to India, after a gap of three years, has opened a new horizon in Bangladesh-India relations. “Throughout the visit, we observed India's sincerity and commitment to continue cooperation between the two countries on the basis of equality and respect as good neighbours,” she said at a press conference on her official visit to India last week at her official residence Ganobhaban. The premier said the people of both countries will be benefited if the decisions taken during her visit (Sept 5-8) to solve the existing bilateral problems and the areas of cooperation identified during the bilateral talks are implemented. “After all, in the changed world situation, this visit would accelerate both the countries to move forward together in a new way. I firmly believe that this cooperation will continue for the welfare of the people of both countries. South Asia, including Bangladesh and India, will become a prosperous region soon,” she said in her written speech. Read:“Assurance of getting oil, gas from India big accomplishment of recent visit” Hasina said both Dhaka and New Delhi highlighted sincerity and pledges to continue cooperation between them on the basis of equality and respect as good neighbours. She said the issues of Teesta water sharing, cessation of border killings, trade expansion, withdrawal of anti-dumping duty on Bangladesh jute products, repatriation of the Rohingyas, import of electricity from Nepal and Bhutan via India, were discussed. The PM highlighted the significant achievements of her visit. These are: MoU on sharing water of Kushiara River allowing Bangladesh to withdraw 153 cusec of water from the river, consensus to bring down the border killing to zero, India agreeing to lift restrictions on rail communication and other cross-border rail links with Bhutan and take steps for giving advance messages to Bangladesh before stopping the export of essential food items like sugar, onion, ginger and garlic. She also mentioned about the planned opening of historic “Swadhinata Road” from Mujibnagar in Bangladesh to the Bangladesh-India border. In case of river pollution and common rivers, immediate steps will be taken to improve the environment and navigability of the rivers, IT solutions will be exchanged to enhance the quality of railway services, and the commerce officials of the two countries has been instructed to begin work for signing the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement by 2022. Read: “People will vote for Awami League if they want development to continue” During the visit, the two sides signed seven Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) including withdrawal of 153 cusec of water from Kushiara river to Bangladesh under Surma-Kushiara project, Scientific and Technological Cooperation between Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), she said, adding that MoUs were also signed between India and Bangladesh Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (BCSIR), MoU between the National Judicial Academy in Bhopal, India and the Supreme Court of Bangladesh, MoU between the Ministry of Railways (Railway Board), Government of India and the Ministry of Railways, Government of Bangladesh on Training of Bangladesh Railway Personnel in India, MoU between the Ministry of Railways (Railway Board), Government of India and the Ministry of Railways, Government of Bangladesh on Collaboration in IT systems such as FOIS and other IT Applications for Bangladesh Railway, between the Indian state-run television ‘Prasar Bharti’ and Bangladesh Television (BTV) on Cooperation in Broadcasting and MoU on Cooperation in the Areas of Space Technology between BTCL and NSIL. Sheikh Hasina said as per the MoU, Bangladesh will receive 153 cusecs of water under the Surma-Kushiara project from the common river Kushiara and as a result, 5,000 hectares of land will get irrigation facilities through Rahimpur Link Canal. Apart from this, the premier said, an agreement has been made on cooperation in the fields of environment, climate change, cyber security, space technology, green economy, cultural and people-to-people communication, she added. “We agreed to complete the construction work of the second gate proposed by India at the Petrapole- Benapole border as soon as possible to expand trade. A delegation from Bangladesh will soon visit India to participate in the start-up fair,” she added. Focusing on the energy cooperation between India and Bangladesh, the PM said fuel (diesel) from Numaligarh Refinery Limited in Assam will flow to Parbatipur in Dinajpur district of Bangladesh through India’s Siliguri through a pipeline. A MoU was signed between Bangladesh and India on April 9, 2018 under the "India-Bangladesh Friendship Pipeline Construction Project", she added. “Under this project, a total of 131.57 km (126.57 km in the Bangladesh part and 5 km in the Indian part) pipeline is being constructed with the finance of the Government of India. Out of the 126.50 km of pipelines in the Bangladesh part, 125 km pipeline has been completed,” she said, adding that due to construction of the pipeline, fuel transportation cost will be saved and diesel could be imported from India easily, quickly and in adverse conditions to meet the needs of northern parts of the country; She said now, 60,000-80,000 metric tonnes of diesel are imported from India annually through Railway Wagon and once the construction of the pipeline is completed, it will be possible to import about 10 lakh metric tonnes of diesel from India annually. Currently, the storage capacity in Parbatipur is 15,000 metric tonnes and under the ongoing project, the storage capacity will increase by 28,800 metric tonnes, she said, adding that on August 28, 2022 India's state-owned company has been enlisted as a supplier of fuel oil on G-to-G basis with an aim to diversify the import source of fuel. About LNG import, the premier said considering the huge gas demand in the south-western part of the country, particularly in Khulna area, the government is considering importing Regasified LNG (RLNG) from India to Bangladesh through a cross-border pipeline and to this end, against the proposals of Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL) and H-Energy, Patrobangla signed respective Non-binding MoU with both the agencies. “India is our closest neighbour and friendly country. Our relationship with India is historic. Our relations have been deepened due to similarities of language and culture,” she said. Besides, the support during the 1971 Liberation War and cooperation after the independence have taken this friendship to a special level, said the prime minister.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday said the relations between Bangladesh and India have reached a new level. The Prime Minister said this when Indian High Commissioner Vikram Kumar Doraiswami met her at her official residence Ganobhaban. PM’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters after the meeting. Also read: Grab investment opportunities in Bangladesh, PM Hasina to global investors Karim said both the Prime Minister and the envoy discussed issues relating to the enhancement of trade and commerce between the two neighbouring countries. In this connection, Hasina put emphasis on the resumption of Akhaura-Agartala rail line to boost connectivity and trade as everything is there for the rail communication. Doraiswami informed the Prime Minister that the Indian President will visit Bangladesh to join the Victory Day celebrations coinciding the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the Golden Jubilee of the Independence. “This is a special year, a year when the Indian President and the Prime Minister are visiting Bangladesh. For India, Bangladesh is a very dear country,” he said. The Indian envoy mentioned that they will showcase the Bangladesh-India relations to demonstrate a good framework of ties. The officials of the two countries are working on finalising the Indian President’s tour. Hasina said there is significant progress in trade, business and tourism between the two countries and now they have to remain cautious to tackle the Covid-19. Also read: Sheikh Mujib a champion of human rights, freedom: Modi Doraiswami thanked Hasina for helping his country by providing medical equipment during the Covid-19 pandemic. He handed over a very rare photograph of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman where he was seen taking one security man to his home for having lunch with him in 1972. He also handed over a pen drive containing some audios and videos alongside some newspaper clippings. The Prime Minister recalled that they had passed horrible days in December 1971 under the captivity of the Pakistani occupation forces but when India recognised Bangladesh as a sovereign and independent country it was a great message for them. Ambassador at Large Md Ziauddin and Principal Secretary Dr Ahmad Kaikaus were also present.
Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Vikram Kumar Doraiswami has said trade will be potentially a key driver of Bangladesh-India friendship in the future with focus on value addition to products but the environment will remain an important issue to look at. “We should look at trade and a whole new framework. I believe trade will be potentially a key driver of our friendship in the future,” he said, adding that the two countries need to be futuristic about how to deal with the next generation of issues. High Commissioner Doraiswami made the remarks while delivering a keynote speech at a symposium titled ‘Bangladesh-India Relations: Prognosis for the Future’ which premiered on Thursday night on Facebook. An array of experts from Bangladesh and India – former Ambassador Tariq A. Karim, Director, Institute of South Asian Studies, National University of Singapore Prof C. Raja Mohan, Dhaka University Prof Imtiaz Ahmed, former Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Pinak Ranjan Chakravarty, Distinguished Fellow, Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya, Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies (BIPSS) President Maj Gen (Retd) A. N. M. Muniruzzaman, CPD Executive Director Dr Fahmida Khatun, Brig. Gen.(Retd.) Shahedul Anam Khan and former Indian Foreign Secretary Krishnan Srinivasan - were brought together for the online symposium to assess the state of relations between the two countries and identify the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead in the effort to take it forward. Renowned scholar-diplomat and adviser on foreign affairs to the last caretaker government Dr Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury chaired the event hosted by the Cosmos Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the Cosmos Group. Chairman of Cosmos Foundation Enayetullah Khan delivered the opening remarks at the event. For future trade, High Commissioner Doraiswami laid emphasis on some areas in which Bangladesh could provide India a key base for value addition, including to food production and RMG and textile.
An array of experts from Bangladesh and India have been brought together for an online symposium hosted by the Cosmos Foundation to assess the state of relations between the two countries and identify the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead in the effort to take it forward. The keynote address at the symposium titled ‘Bangladesh-India relations: Prognosis for the Future’ will be delivered by Vikram Doraiswamy, High Commissioner of India to Bangladesh. Chairman of Cosmos Foundation Enayetullah Khan will deliver the opening remarks at the event, which is set to premiere on the Facebook page of Cosmos Foundation at 8pm BST on Thursday. Also read: Bangladesh-India bilateral talks begin at PMO Renowned scholar-diplomat and adviser on foreign affairs to the last caretaker government Dr Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury will chair the session. It is the latest instalment in Cosmos Foundation’s Ambassador Lecture Series, in which the envoys of various countries stationed in Dhaka are invited to deliver a keynote, before engaging with a high-level expert panel on bilateral ties between Bangladesh and the country they represent. For this edition, the panel of discussants drawn from both sides of the border will comprise Ambassador (Retd.) Tariq A. Karim, Professor C. Raja Mohan, Professor Imtiaz Ahmed, Pinak Ranjan Chakravarty, Dr.Debapriya Bhattacharya, Major Gen. (Retd.) A. N. M. Muniruzzaman, Dr. Fahmida Khatun, Brig. Gen.(Retd.) Shahedul Anam Khan, and Ambassador (Retd.) Krishnan Srinivasan. Also read: Bangladesh-India to strengthen ties through mega events in 2021 The full video of the event will be available for viewing on the Facebook page of Cosmos Foundation, and (elsewhere) from Thursday at any time, following the premiere. Over the better part of the last 12 years, India and Bangladesh have diligently forged a warm and friendly relationship that has been described as a textbook example of a neighbourly relationship. The essence of the bond between the two countries lies in a shared heritage of culture and history that can never be erased, which culminated during Bangladesh’s struggle for independence in 1971. Also read: Doraiswami for infrastructure dev to boost Bangladesh-India trade Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s attendance as the most honoured chief guest during Bangladesh’s Golden Jubilee celebrations of independence just last month, served to reiterate that the two countries are experiencing a ‘golden age’ in their relationship. Against this backdrop, Cosmos Foundation, the philanthropic arm of conglomerate the Cosmos Group, brings together the finest minds to arrive at a prognosis for the future of the relationship, in line with its commitment to eliciting strategic insights and policy solutions for Bangladesh as it charts its course toward a future that is ever-brighter.
Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader on Monday said the friendly relationship between Bangladesh and India is a multidimensional one.
Indian Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla on Tuesday night met Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and discussed ways of strengthening cooperation between the two countries.