Hasina to attend reception in West Bengal
Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has accepted an invitation of the West Bengal state government for a reception in her honour.
Bangladesh High Commissioner in India Syed Muazzem Ali conveyed Hasina's decision to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee during a courtesy call this afternoon.
In the meeting that lasted around 40 minutes, the Bangladesh envoy in India expressed his full confidence upon Mamata Banerjee over the Teesta water-sharing treaty.
They also discussed on various aspects including infrastructural development of ports, militant threat to Ramkrishna Mission, and on Hilsa trade issue, Bangladesh Deputy High-Commissioner in Kolkata Jocky Ahad told The Daily Star.
Zokey Ahad, Deputy High Commissioner of Bangladesh Deputy High Commission in Kolkata, confirmed this to The Daily Star.
A four-member delegation led by Muazzem Ali met Mamata at 3:00pm, he told our Kolkata correspondent.
This was the first meeting of the Bangladesh envoy with Mamata after she recently reelected as West Bengal CM.
Talking to The Daily Star earlier in the day, Mofakkharul Islam, first secretary of Bangladesh embassy in Kolkata, termed today's meeting significant with Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj talking yesterday about her country's initiatives to conclude the Teesta deal.
Replying to a query on the treaty, Sushma Swaraj yesterday told the media in New Delhi that India is taking initiatives to conclude the deal.
"There are three parties in this. India, Bangladesh, West Bengal government. There were assembly elections in West Bengal. Now that elections are over and Mamata Banerjee is back as chief minister, the federal Indian government will begin talks with Mamata government to finalise the Teesta water sharing treaty."
Swaraj said no talks on the Teesta issue could be held with the West Bengal government for the last few months because the state was busy with the elections. But with the polls over, the process of talks would resume soon.
It is possible to solve the Teesta issue if the West Bengal government, New Delhi and Dhaka join hands with a firm resolve, she added.
There have been obstacles to the Teesta deal since September 2011 when Mamata, scheduled to visit Dhaka with the then Indian PM Manmohan Singh, opted out of the trip opposing the agreement.