Virtual Summit: India and Bangladesh sign 7 MoUs, agreements
India and Bangladesh signed seven MoUs and agreements during the virtual summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today.
The agreements include a framework of understanding in Hydrocarbon sector, framework agreement on High Impact Community Development Project (HICDP), protocol on transborder elephant conservation, an MoU on the supply of equipment and improvement of Garbage and solid waste disposal, MoU in the field of agriculture, an MoU between National Museum Delhi and Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial museum, Dhaka and terms of reference for India Bangladesh CEO forum.
The agreements and MoUs were signed in Dhaka by the High Commissioner of India Vikram Doraiswami on behalf of India and officials of Bangladesh.
The two leaders jointly inaugurated the restored Chilahati – Haldibari rail route re-linking Bangladesh with North Bengal in India. This is the fifth of the six cross-border rail routes. severed in 1965 by the then Pakistani Government, to be restored.
The Framework agreement on HICDP is a ten year agreement allowing for projects amounting to 500 million Taka. It is double the amount of what was previously admitted. Projects in the field of education, health and sanitation, water-treatment, cultural heritage aimed at increased socio-economic development of local communities are taken up under this agreement.
In the field of energy, both the countries agreed to promote two-way investment, technology transfer, joint studies and capacity building in hydrocarbons. The India-Bangladesh Friendship Pipeline currently being built to supply High-speed diesel from Siliguri in India to Parbatipur in Bangladesh will add to this.
India and Bangladesh also agreed to set up a high level CEO forum between the top CEOs of both the countries to provide policy level inputs for enhancing bilateral trade and investment as well as export to third countries. Textiles, Pharmaceuticals, Leather, Agriculture and Food processing value chains, Automobiles, Services sector will be the major focus areas.
A digital exhibition on the life of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and Mahatma Gandhi was also commissioned during the virtual summit. The travelling exhibition will be jointly showcased in India, Bangladesh and in various countries including the UN. Prime MInister Narendra Modi in his introductory speech said that the exhibition also includes a section on Bangomata and Kasturba.
India also released a postal stamp to commemorate Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman on the occasion.
Prime Minister Modi also assured Prime Minister Hasina that India would support effective and timely delivery of COVID 19 vaccines being produced and developed in India.
During the discussion, Prime Minister Modi appreciated the generosity of Bangladesh in hosting a large number of displaced persons from Rakhine state in Myanmar. PM Modi reiterated the need for safe, speedy and sustainable repatriation of displaced persons to their homes in the Rakhine State of Myanmar.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi reiterated India’s commitment to complete the Interim Water Sharing arrangement for the Teesta river. The two leaders underscored the need for early conclusion of Frameworks for Interim Agreement on sharing the waters of six other joint rivers, namely, Manu, Muhuri, Khowai, Gumti, Dharla and Dudhkumar. In this regard, the two leaders agreed to schedule the Joint River Commission meetings at the earliest.
Stressing that border management is a shared responsibility, both Leaders emphasized the need for coordinated and joint patrols to create a crime-free border.