Democracy wins again in India


The people of India have elected BJP, led by Narendera Modi, for the second consecutive time. We congratulate BJP and India’s prime minister Modi for this landslide victory. We also congratulate the opposition parties for the democratic manner in which they have accepted the election results. Ever since its independence in 1947, India has had free and fair elections for the democratic transfer of power, something that not all countries of the region have practiced.

Prior to the election there was the usual war of words, but the election itself was free and fair and all parties accepted the results. The opposition congratulated the winner, in a democratic and gracious manner.

It is up to the people of India to choose their ruler and no other country has any reason to interfere. As for Bangladesh, the people want good and friendly relations with the neighbour, no matter who may be at the helm. During his visit to Dhaka in 2015, Narendera Modi had declared his commitment to move forward with all the neighbours of the region. After his visit, several problems were resolved. The land port agreement was signed, enclaves were exchanged and more. However, several problems remained unresolved too, such as the sharing of the river Teesta’s waters, which met a snag due to India’s domestic political problems.

Indian policymakers have admitted that Sheikh Hasina has eliminated the security threat of their northeastern region. Bangladesh also took initiative in several sectors of communication. Due to objection from West Bengal’s chief minister Mamata Banerjee, two consecutive central government’s of India failed to sign the Teesta agreement with Bangladesh, despite intentions to do so. However, Modi has continually assured Bangladesh that this deal will be signed while he and Sheikh Hasina are still in power. India’s foreign ministry, after the Lok Sabha elections, has committed to reach further heights in bilateral relations. We believe it will not no longer be difficult for the Indian government to resolve the Teesta issue.

Awami League, BNP and other political parties have been unanimous in their congratulating BJP. We hope the new government in India takes pragmatic and friendly measures to address the various bilateral issues such as Teesta sharing, tariff and non-tariff barriers, border killings and the possible fallout of the Indian national listing.

India’s stance regarding the Rohingya issue falls short of expectations. It is hoped New Delhi takes a firmer stand in this regard.
Again, if extremist and religious politics rears its head in India, Bangladesh can face the impact. We hope in the interests of India and the region, the Modi government reins in all sorts of extremism.

Despite a few shortfalls here and there, the Indian election commission presented their people with an election credible to all. The election ensured the voting rights of 900 million voters in India. No matter which party won or lost, the real winner is democracy.

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