Momen, Jaishankar to inaugurate River Conclave in Guwahati Saturday

Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen and his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar

Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen left Dhaka for Guwahati via Kolkata on Friday to attend the third edition of the Asian Confluence flagship dialogue, NADI Conclave, to be held on 28-29 May, reports news agency UNB.

The two-day conclave will be inaugurated by Foreign Minister Momen, his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar and the Foreign Minister of Thailand, along with Himanta Biswa Sarma, Chief Minister of Indian state of Assam in the presence of diplomats of several countries, top experts and scientists and other dignitaries.

Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will deliver the valedictory address at the conclave on 29 May.

Leaders and experts will be there in Guwahati to attend the event organised by think tank Asian Confluence, headquartered in Shillong, in collaboration with Ministry of External Affairs, India, the Act East Department of Government of Assam, the North Eastern Council and other partners.

The goal will be to articulate and activate a collective vision of sub-regional cooperation in the Bay of Bengal region and with South-East Asia, keeping North-East India and Assam at the epicenter of activity, said the organisers.

The Bangladesh Foundation for Regional Studies is the country partner for the event and the International Union for Conservation of Nature, IIT Guwahati and Guwahati University, are knowledge partners.

NADI (Natural Allies in Development and Interdependence) recognises the region south of Himalayas from Ganga, Brahmaputra to Mekong as a contiguity of river basins with common challenges that require close cooperation beyond their political borders.

It is also aimed at building confidence in the key role of North Eastern Indian region in taking forward India’s strategic initiative for energy and water security in the neighbourhood, and the Bay of Bengal region leading towards a vibrant and secure Indo-Pacific.

NADI 2022 will bring together all major stakeholders such as government, the diplomatic community, scientists, corporates, civil society and diverse riparian communities, who will brainstorm on specific actions to foster a people-centric regional narrative around caring and sharing of our shared riverine resources for sustainable development.

NADI uses the symbols and narratives of our shared rivers, and shared waters to encourage shared ideas on collaboration with emphasis on 5Cs: Connectivity, Culture, Commerce, Conservation, and Collaboration in the Ganga-Brahmaputra-Meghna basin.

Taking forward the messages of the previous NADI conclave that were held in Shillong and Dhaka respectively followed by several research and outreach projects and online events during the lockdown, the third version of NADI dialogue (NADI-3) is taking place in Guwahati, which is also India’s gateway to South-east apart from being the crucial meeting point of all the North-eastern states.

Addressing the media Sabyasachi Dutta, Executive Director, Asian Conclave, said it is a matter of pride for them that NADI is being hosted in Guwahati.

“We are really grateful to the Government of Assam and its dynamic leadership Hon. CM Himanta Biswa Sharma and the Ministry of external affairs for championing this cause as primary sponsors to help us convene the third edition of the NADI conclave along with other partners,” Dutta said.

A well-planned collaboration with the states of North East and neighbouring countries on management of shared waters can alleviate disasters to a large extent and catapult the region to being a hub of connectivity and green commerce, Dutta added.