People expect progress in Teesta deal | The Daily Star
03:57 AM, March 16, 2017 / LAST MODIFIED: 04:38 AM, March 16, 2017

People expect progress in Teesta deal

Nasim tells Indian journos as Hasina goes to Delhi next month

The people of Bangladesh expect India to make a positive decision on the Teesta deal during Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's upcoming visit to New Delhi, Health Minister Mohammed Nasim said yesterday.

“We expect a productive outcome of the Teesta issue,” Nasim told reporters at Le Meridien Hotel in New Delhi.

He, however, hastened to add that Bangladesh did not want to give any impression that Indo-Bangla relations hinges on any particular issue, saying “…because we believe in further strengthening of relations.”

Nasim said Bangladesh wanted India to resolve all the outstanding issues, including those relating to sharing of waters of common rivers, reports our New Delhi correspondent.

The Teesta issue has been hanging fire since September, 2011 due to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's stiff opposition to the treaty. India maintains it is trying to work out a consensus with the West Bengal government on the issue.

“There is no scope for any misunderstanding between Bangladesh and India on any issue. If we can meet people's expectations and needs, it will strengthen bilateral ties,” he said.

The minister said Hasina would be accompanied by a strong business delegation from Bangladesh during her visit starting on April 7 and that she would address Indian chambers of commerce and industries, seeking investments in Bangladesh.

Replying to a question, he said the PM's son Sajib Wazed Joy and sister Sheikh Rehana might also accompany her.

Nasim was in New Delhi to attend a two-day international conference on tuberculosis convened by the World Health Organization.

“Our government stands committed to ending TB in the country. We will work jointly with the WHO and partners to achieve the ambitious End TB targets,” he said adding, "We understand that by reaching End TB targets, we will save 1.2 million precious lives and prevent about 5 million TB cases.”

Ministers, officials and health activists from Bangladesh, Bhutan, South Korea, India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Thailand, Myanmar, Nepal and Timor Leste besides representatives from World Health Organization participated in the meeting. The meeting will come out with an action plan tomorrow.

Meanwhile, Water Resources Minister Anisul Islam Mahmud yesterday said Bangladesh and India sincerely want a solution to the Teesta issue during Hasina's visit.

Bangladesh certainly wants to settle the pending Teesta water sharing agreement and the government is working on it for saving the rivers and agriculture of the country, he said while talking to the media following a workshop at Cirdap auditorium in the capital.

INDIAN CABINET OKAYS MOU WITH BANGLADESH

The Indian Cabinet yesterday approved the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Aids to Navigation (AtoNs) with Bangladesh during the visit of Hasina.

The Mou, approved at a meeting of the Cabinet presided by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will be signed between the Directorate General of Lighthouses and Lightships  under the Indian Ministry of Shipping and the Department of Shipping of Bangladesh, an official statement said.  

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