PM's visit to India: Move on to sign five MoUs

PM Sheikh HasinaFile photo

Bangladesh and India are going to sign five to seven Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) during the bilateral meeting between prime minister Sheikh Hasina and her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi.

Prim minister Sheikh Hasina is coming to India on a four-day visit on Monday.

The bilateral meeting between prime minister Sheikh Hasina and her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi will be held on Tuesday, diplomatic sources in Dhaka and Delhi have said.

At the minister-level meeting of the Joint River Commission (JRC) between Bangladesh and India on 25 August, a draft memorandum of understanding (MoU) on withdrawal of water from the upstream of the Kushiyara river flowing from India to Sylhet of Bangladesh was finalised. Besides, four more MoUs have been finalised for signing.

Speaking to Prothom Alo, an official of Bangladesh said a preparation is going on to sign MoUs relating to withdrawal of water from the upstream of the Kushiyara river, cooperation between national defence college of two countries, cooperation between judiciary authorities, modernisation of rail and capacity building and cooperation between information and communication sector.

Moreover, a cooperation between blue economy and two MOUs signed earlier between two broadcasting authorities will be renewed.

On condition of anonymity, a diplomat said during the prime minister Sheikh Hasina's visit to India, a MoU is likely to be signed with Indian multinational company GMR to import hydropower from Nepal. Besides, the prime ministers of two countries through video conference may inaugurate the bridge built on Rupsha river in Khulna.

According to the diplomatic sources in two countries, issues like energy, supply of daily necessities, water distribution and connectivity will get importance this time. Additionally, the two prime ministers will discuss ways to continue and expand security and defence cooperation.

Prime minister Sheikh Hasina will reach Delhi early Monday. Indian external affairs minister S Jaishankar will pay a courtesy call on her at the hotel sometime in the afternoon on the day.

A guard of honour will be given to PM Hasina on Tuesday morning. Later, she will pay homage to Mahatma Gandhi at Rajghat before leaving for Hyderabad House.

PM Hasina will hold a private meeting with her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi at the Hyderabad House, which will be followed by another meeting at delegation level.

The listed bilateral agreements will be signed in presence of two prime ministers. Later, PM Hasina will meet Indian president Droupadi Murmu and vice- president Jagdeep Dhankhar at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in the afternoon.

PM Hasina is scheduled to address a meeting to exchange views with India's top businessmen on 7 September. She will hand over the scholarships to the family members of Indians who participated in the Liberation War at an event at noon.

On the next day, she will visit Ajmer Sharif Dargah in Rajasthan before leaving for Dhaka in the afternoon.

*This report, originally published in Prothom Alo print edition, has been rewritten in English by Rabiul Islam and Misbahul Haque.