With friendship, we can solve any problem: Bangladesh PM

PM Modi, Sheikh Hasina hold talks; discuss trade, sign 7 crucial MoUs
“Our main aim is to develop the economy and fulfill the basic needs of our people. With friendship, you can solve any problem. So we always do that,” PM Sheikh Hasina said.
“Our main aim is to develop the economy and fulfill the basic needs of our people. With friendship, you can solve any problem. So we always do that,” PM Sheikh Hasina said.ANI

New Delhi: With friendship, one could solve any problem, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said Tuesday as she embarked on a four-day state visit to India.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi welcomed Hasina at the Rashtrapati Bhawan forecourt here where she was accorded a tri-services guard of honour.

Interacting with reporters at the Rashtrapati Bhawan, PM Sheikh Hasina said her talks with PM Modi would focus on improving the condition of the people in their respective countries, poverty alleviation, and economic development.

“Our main aim is to develop the economy and fulfill the basic needs of our people. With friendship, you can solve any problem. So we always do that,” PM Sheikh Hasina said.

She also offered floral tributes at Rajghat, the memorial to Mahatma Gandhi

Welcoming the Bangladesh Prime Minister and her delegation, PM Modi said, “Last year we celebrated together the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh’s independence, the golden jubilee of our diplomatic relations, and the birth centenary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. On December 6 last year, we also celebrated the first ‘Maitri Diwas’ together all over the world. Today, PM Sheikh Hasina’s visit is taking place during the Amrit Mahotsav of our independence. And I am confident that in the Amrit Kaal of the next 25 years, India-Bangladesh friendship will touch new heights.”

He said Bangladesh had made remarkable progress under the leadership of PM Sheikh Hasina.

“In the last few years, our cooperation has also increased rapidly in every field. Today, Bangladesh is India’s largest development partner and our largest trade partner in the region.

Our close cultural and people-to-people relations have also steadily grown. Today, PM Sheikh Hasina and I had extensive discussions on all bilateral, regional and international issues,” PM Modi said. “We both believe that by taking lessons from the COVID pandemic and recent global developments, we need to make our economies stronger. With the expansion of connectivity between our two countries, and the development of trade infrastructure on the border, the two economies will be able to connect more and support each other. Our bilateral trade is growing rapidly. Today, India is the largest market in Asia for Bangladesh’s exports. To further accelerate this growth, we will soon start discussions on the Bilateral Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement.”

He said that they also decided to increase cooperation in sectors like IT, space, and nuclear energy, which were of interest to the younger generations.

“We will also continue to cooperate on climate change and on preserving a common heritage like the Sundarbans,” the PM said. “Rising energy prices are presently posing a challenge to all developing countries. The unveiling of the first unit of Maitree Thermal Power Plant today will increase the availability of affordable electricity in Bangladesh.”

He said that fruitful talks were also underway between the two countries on connecting power transmission lines.

“The inauguration of the railway bridge over the Rupsha River is a remarkable step towards enhancing connectivity. This bridge is an important part of the new railway line being built between Khulna and Mongla Port under India’s Line of Credit. India will continue to extend all support for the development and expansion of Bangladesh’s railway system,” PM Modi said. “There are 54 rivers that pass through the Indo-Bangladesh border and have been linked to the livelihood of the people of the two countries for centuries. These rivers, folk tales about them, and folk songs have also been witness to our shared cultural heritage. Today, we have signed an important agreement on sharing water of the Kushiyara river. This will benefit Southern Assam in India and Sylhet region in Bangladesh.”

He said that he and PM Sheikh Hasina also had a fruitful conversation on enhancing cooperation about flood mitigation.

“India has been sharing flood-related data with Bangladesh on a real-time basis and we have also extended the period of data sharing,” PM Modi said. “Today, we also stressed cooperation against terrorism and radicalism. To keep the spirit of 1971 alive, it is also very important that we fight together such forces, which want to attack our mutual trust.”

He said that in realising the vision of a stable, prosperous, and progressive Bangladesh that Bangabandhu had seen, India would continue to walk step by step with Bangladesh.

“Our conversation today was also an excellent opportunity to reiterate this core commitment. Once again, I extend a warm welcome to PM Sheikh Hasina and her delegation to India. And wish her a pleasant stay in India,” PM Modi said.

During her stay, PM Sheikh Hasina would also call on President Droupadi Murmu and Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar.

PM Sheikh Hasina also visited Nizamuddin Aulia Dargah in the national capital and is scheduled to travel to Ajmer Sharif on Thursday.

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