Foreign secretary Masud Bin Momen is scheduled to visit New Delhi next month for consultation over the agendas of bilateral talks between prime minister Sheikh Hasina and her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi during their forthcoming virtual meeting.
About his trip to India, Masud told BSS that he was likely to visit New Delhi in the second week of December before the prime minister-level virtual talks between the two neighbouring countries.
A virtual summit meeting between prime minister Sheikh Hasina and her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi will take place in the third week of December, either on 16 or 17, a foreign ministry official said.
Earlier, foreign minister AK Abdul Momen said Dhaka has invited Narendra Modi to visit Dhaka in person on 26 March to join the nation’s celebration of the 50 years of the independence.
“We’ve invited him (Narendra Modi) and they accepted the invitation in principle,” he said after his maiden meeting with newly appointed Indian high commissioner to Bangladesh Vikram Doraiswami in the capital last month.
The Indian premier was scheduled to visit this year to join birth centenary celebration of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman but the trip was cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic.
Momen said Bangladesh and India will celebrate Bangladesh’s 50 years of independence together next year and expected that the Indian premier will join the opening of the celebration.
Before the foreign ministerial level 6th Joint Consultative Commission (JCC) JCC meeting in September last, Momen had hinted that some bilateral agreements may be signed during Indian primer’s visit to Dhaka.
Meanwhile, while paying his call on state minister for foreign affairs Shahriar Alam, Doraiswami assured that the virtual Hasina-Modi summit in December is not being seen as a substitute for in person visit by the Indian prime minister to Dhaka.
Prime minister Sheikh Hasina and Indian prime Modi held last bilateral talks in New Delhi on 5 October last year.
Currently, Bangladesh and India are enjoying excellent bilateral relations, termed as ‘golden chapter’ and ‘rock solid’ by leaders of both the countries.
In several occasions, Bangladesh foreign minister termed the Bangladesh-India ties as a ‘blood relation’ while he says, “Our victory is India’s victory. Our development is India’s development . . . nothing can hinder this (Bangladesh-India) relation.” New Delhi and Dhaka are also looking for holding the ministerial-level Joint Rivers Commission (JRC) meeting this year to discuss pending issues regarding water sharing of common rivers. On 5 November, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Serum Institute of India and Beximco Pharma of Bangladesh for priority delivery of 30 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Bangladesh. The two countries also established air connectivity under ‘air bubble arrangement’ amid the pandemic.