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India and Bangladesh Sign Seven Pacts for Transport, Connectivity and Capacity Building

© REUTERS / Altaf HussainIndia's Prime Minister Narendra Modi shakes hands with his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina before their meeting at Hyderabad House in New Delhi, India, October 5, 2019.
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi shakes hands with his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina before their meeting at Hyderabad House in New Delhi, India, October 5, 2019.  - Sputnik International
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New Delhi (Sputnik) - Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina, held wide-ranging bilateral talks in New Delhi on Saturday. Hasina was in the Indian capital on invitation by Modi, as the principal guest at the India Economic Summit organised by World Economic Forum on 3-4 October.

"They held productive and comprehensive discussions during which they reviewed all aspects of their bilateral relations, and exchanged views on regional issues. Both Prime Ministers agreed to fully utilize various opportunities for advancing mutually beneficial partnership in both conventional and non-conventional areas, and to ensure that this irreversible partnership enhances the legacy that started with the Great War of Liberation of Bangladesh," said a joint statement at the end of the talks.

New Delhi and Dhaka signed seven agreements during the summit. These include arrangements for cooperation on the standard operating procedure (SOP) for use at Chittogram and Mongla ports in Bangladesh, for movement of goods to and from India, particularly to and from the North East of the country. The agreement in this regard was signed in October last year; allowing India to use these two ports to ferry cargo to India's northeastern states. However, India had not started using the ports as the SOP wasn't yet signed.

Both Prime Ministers inaugurated a project to transport bulk LPG from Bangladesh to the northeastern state of Tripura with the help of Bangladeshi Trucks. Another agreement relates to water sharing from the Feni river in Bangladesh for the drinking water needs of Tripura.

New Delhi's relations with Dhaka have shown remarkable growth after Prime Minister Modi's government took over in 2014. Since then, India has ratified the 1974 land boundary pact in 2015. Bangladesh has received $ 8 billion in credit lines from India in the past seven years — the most substantial amount in lines of credit extended to any country by India.

Although the process of identifying illegal migrants in the northeastern state of Assam is a matter of concern to Dhaka, New Delhi has clarified saying the process is internal as of now.

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