Inauguration of 500 MW additional power supply from India to Bangladesh, groundbreaking of Agartala-Akhaura rail link and rehabilitation of Kulaura-Shahbazpur section of Bangladesh Railways is a milestone development in the bilateral relations of the two countries. Prime Ministers of both Bangladesh and India along with Chief Ministers of Kolkata and Tripura jointly inaugurated the schemes through videoconferencing on Monday.
The additional power import will no doubt boost Bangladesh’s energy sector as the country is hungry for power and energy to cater to growing industrial and household demands. In addition, the rail projects would improve road connectivity between the two neighbouring countries. Improving communication network is the key to increasing people to people connectivity between Bangladesh and India. If the people from across the border are directly connected, there will be little room for misconceptions and mistrust, and thus friendship and peace can be established on a firmer footing. It will also open new avenues for trade and commerce.The inauguration of three projects is a sign that bilateral relations between Bangladesh and India is moving forward despite some unresolved issues like Teesta water sharing deal and trade imbalance. It is hoped that that buoyed by the spirit of good neighbourliness and combined political will, New Delhi and Dhaka will be able to overcome the remaining challenges.
In this era of global connectivity, no country can prosper in isolation from others. The shared vision of moving forward together and harnessing the potentials that exist in the South Asian regions was reaffirmed during the recent BIMSTEC summit. Therefore, the growing cooperation and physical connectivity among nations is expected to pave the way for sustainable development and poverty reduction.
Bangladesh and India are two close neighbours having historical, cultural and traditional links. The close ties and cooperation between the two countries persisted during our Liberation War and in the post-liberation era. The people of both the countries are in favour of maintaining friendly relation with each other. Taking this as the foundation the government of the two countries should stick to the principle of friendship and cooperation and the policy they adopt should benefit the people on the ground.