May 26, 2024

BSS, DHAKA: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today sought India’s cooperation to import electricity from Bhutan using its land.

She sought the cooperation as the Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh, Pranay Verma called on her at the Prime Minister’s official residence Ganabhaban this morning.

“The Prime Minister sought support from the Indian side to import that electricity smoothly,” the PM’s Speech Writer Md Nazrul Islam told newsmen after the meeting.

Briefing the reporters, Nazrul Islam mentioned that Bangladesh will import electricity from Bhutan and there will be an agreement in this regard during the upcoming visit of Bhutanese King Jigme Khesar Namgyal to Dhaka scheduled for March 25.

Bangladesh plans to import electricity from Bhutan and the discussion between Bhutan and Bangladesh is almost at the final stage, according to the officials familiar with this.

Sheikh Hasina also urged the Indian government to remove the anti-dumping measures for importing jute and jute goods from Bangladesh.

Besides, she told the High Commissioner that India could modernise the Syedpur Railway Worksop.

While talking about the upcoming election of India, the Prime Minister said that the continuous democratic system makes possible the unprecedented development of Bangladesh.

She mentioned that after the brutal assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and before 1996, the decision of any win in the election and which party will be in the power was determined by a certain quarter.

For that reason, Sheikh Hasina said, Awami League, although having support in 1991 couldn’t register its win.

“But in 1996, the certain quarter bowed down to the desire of the mass people. In that year, Awami League for the first time broke the vicious cycle,” she added.

Pranay Verma mentioned that last year a total of four projects were implemented in Bangladesh under the Indian Line of Credit (LOC).

“And two more projects are in the pipeline for implementation,” he said.

The Indian High Commissioner mentioned some ground-breaking initiatives of the two countries like Rupee-Taka bilateral trade transaction, digital payment network and Bangabandhu Biopic.

He said that India is committed to take forward the negotiations for Comprehensive Economic Partnership (CEPA).

After the developing country graduation of Bangladesh after 2026, this CEPA would be helpful, added the envoy.

He said that new thinking and discussions are going on to prepare a new framework for the LOC to make it project based.

In the meeting, issues of setting up a high-power grid line among Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal was discussed.

Pranay Verma said that there is a move to extend the diesel pipeline up to Natore from Syedpur to import diesel from India.

He said that some world famous defence industries are relocating their factories in India.

The High Commissioner said that Bangladesh could set up a defence factory here with an Indian joint venture.

He conveyed the greetings of the Indian Prime Minister to Sheikh Hasina.

Pranay Verma invited the Prime Minister to visit India after the Indian National Election and she accepted the invitation.

The High Commissioner also told the Premier that they are interested in setting up an office in Rangpur.

In reply, the Prime Minister said that the government would consider the proposal after examining it.

PM’s Principal Secretary M Tofazzel Hossain Miah was present.

 

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