12:01 AM, May 17, 2014 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:53 AM, March 08, 2015

Ties to reach a greater height

Ties to reach a greater height

Hasina writes to Modi; Khaleda, Ershad, Jamaat also greet BJP
Star Report

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday felicitated Narendra Modi on the resounding victory of BJP in India's Lok Sabha elections.
Hasina praised his "dynamic, inspiring and visionary leadership qualities" and invited him to visit Bangladesh as the first foreign destination at the earliest convenient time, reports our New Delhi correspondent.
Meanwhile, BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, Jatiya Party (JP) Chairman HM Ershad and Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami have congratulated Modi on his party's victory in the elections.
In a warm letter, a copy of which is with The Daily Star, Hasina said with the kind of people's mandate given to both of them they can work together to take the relationship to "increasingly greater heights".
"I am delighted to see a great friend of Bangladesh leading an extremely friendly country, India, in the coming days," she said in the letter to Modi.
"I hope that you would find my country your second home and first destination for your official visit abroad," she added.
Hasina also said "The decisive verdict given by the people of your great country is a strong testimony to your dynamic, inspiring and visionary leadership qualities and a manifestation of the trust and confidence reposed in you by the people of the largest democracy in the world."
Pointing out that Bangladesh and India are natural and contiguous development partners, she said, "Our shared history and culture… our inseparable bond of friendship was permanently cemented when the entire political leadership and the people of India provided unprecedented support to our historic War of Liberation in 1971."
The premier said the two countries have "made significant collective strides in the bilateral relationship which must continue to move forward".
"On this historic occasion and joyous moment of your victory, I wish you and the friendly people of India all the very best."
In a separate letter to BJP President Rajnath Singh, Hasina, also chief of Awami League, said "The magnitude of BJP's victory is clearly reflective of the charismatic leadership quality of yours and the prime ministerial candidate of BJP Shri Narendra Modi, your top office bearers and election campaign strategists and managers, as well as the huge degree of trust and confidence that the people of India have chosen to repose in your party and in your leadership."
She recalled Atal Bihari Vajpayee's contribution to the cause of Bangladesh's independence and said "The people of Bangladesh are thankful for the unprecedented degree of support and all-round assistance extended by the people of India to us during our Liberation War."
"Both our parties have been in government at the same time in the past and have worked very closely together to take our bilateral relationship forward to scale new heights," she said, adding: "The forces and dynamics of history have once again placed our respective parties in the same position today."  
Hasina said the two countries and parties once again have the opportunity to "ring in a new era in the relationship between our two countries, consolidating what we have already laid on the ground in the last five years and strengthening the mechanisms".
This, she said, "will enable us to transform for the better not only the lives of our peoples in our respective countries but also those beyond in the region, in the process ensuring lasting peace, security and all-round development and prosperous growth for all".
The Awami League president vowed to work with BJP and the elected government of India to bring about "meaningful, tangible and positive changes in our close and friendly relations".  
She also invited Rajnath Singh to visit Bangladesh.
Khaleda has sent a greeting message to Modi through the Indian High Commission in Dhaka, BNP vice-chairman Shamser Mobin Chowdhury told The Daily Star yesterday.
In the message, Khaleda hoped that the new government of India would take proper initiatives to resolve bilateral issues through dialogue, Mobin said.
BNP acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir also extended his greetings to Modi, hoping that the new government of India would take effective steps to ensure due share of Teesta water and stop border killings.
"I expect that the Modi government would be able to understand the sentiments of Bangladesh people and resolve the longstanding feud between the two countries," he added.
Fakhrul made the remarks while addressing a function at the Jatiya Press Club in Dhaka, reports our staff correspondent.
In a press statement, JP Chairman HM Ershad and its Secretary General Ziauddin Bablu had congratulated Modi, who is all set to become the prime minister of India.
"Friendly relations between the two countries would be strengthened under the new government and unsettled bilateral issues would also be resolved," Ershad said in the statement.
Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami has congratulated Modi on his party's victory in the Lok Sabha elections.
"We hope India will uphold its tradition of keeping religious harmony among people under the leadership of Modi," Jamaat acting ameer Moqbul Ahmed said in a written statement.


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