| by Swadesh Roy writes from Dhaka

( August 26, 2014, Dhaka, Sri Lanka Guardian) “India wants an eternal relation with Bangladesh. Indian government is working to this destination. Within very short time, after the visit of our external affairs minister, my visit is indicating this.” In an exclusive discussion in Dhaka, Indian foreign minister Junior (specially in charge of North East India) General Vijoy Kumar Sing ( V K Sing) told these very clearly. He answered this, when it was asked to him that, “you have come in Dhaka within very short time after the visit of Sushma Swaraj, does it indicate any significance?” He also emphasized, India would invest in Bangladesh to build-up infrastructure for connectivity and spread commerce with North East India.

General V K Sing has an extra emotion for Bangladesh because he participated in the liberation war of Bangladesh. He told that, in his memory the liberation war of Bangladesh is still live. When he was telling about his memory of the war of 1971, he became little bit emotional; he told that, he could still fell that times when he was fighting in Chittagong of Bangladesh with Major Rafik, one of the sector commanders of Bangladesh liberation war. He started his war from Tripura and first they went to Chadpur of Bangladesh after they joined Chittagong war. His feelings is very much holy towards Bangladesh, in his words, “I got chance to participate in a great struggle of this nation so I fell this is my own country”

In Modi government, Mr, V K Sing is the state minister of foreign especially in charge of North East India. So in exclusive discussion, North East India got most priority. He seems, there is a lot of commerce opportunity between Bangladesh and North East India. He told same in the earlier too, in a seminar in Dhaka named India- Bangladesh Business Conclave. He also emphasized on the connectivity with North East India and Bangladesh, in the exclusive discussions. For this connectivity, he thinks developing infrastructure is the first priority. If it is possible to build up infrastructure, Bangladesh can invest and do business in many sector of North East India, like health, tourism and others.

I asked him, there are huge opportunities in industry and commerce between North East India and Bangladesh but we are observing that two countries are doing everything according to issue. Do you think, it is needed for two countries to make a master plan? V K Sing answered, “Two countries must have to think on it. But they have to think about ensuring infrastructure build up.” I told him, “ you know that for building up infrastructure, a huge capital is needed, will India invest it?” he told, “ of course, India will do it”

I asked him, “ North East India, which is known as seven sisters. In these seven sisters, three provinces have more borders with Bangladesh those are Assam, Tripura and Meghalaya. In this position, what India will do? will India give more emphasis for the business with Bangladesh and these three provinces first or they will go forward taking all the provinces of seven sisters?” In his answer, Mr Shing told, West Bengal, Assam, Tripura and Meghalaya are very close with Bangladesh so they had to think first to spread business between these four states with Bangladesh. He is very much optimistic because he thinks the interest of two countries are common so when interest are common then things go forward fast. He also added that, common interest would make easy everything. His opinion is common interest is making easy all the aspects and building up connectivity between people to people. Regarding India Bangladesh Business conclave, his opinion is, it is also an example of connectivity between business persons of two countries. He emphasized on people-to-people connectivity more. Through this short discussion with the foreign minister of state of India , we can come to a conclusion that Indian present government wants to make more economic relation with Bangladesh within the SAARC countries. It is the more practical way to build up a strong relationship with India and Bangladesh. we have to admit that without economic relation, it is impossible to make a strong relation between two countries. Despite, some problems Bangladesh and India have planted this tree and nursed last five years. The present Government of India has taken decision to pure more water on the root of that tree and they are more serious. Creating a post for an state minister of foreign in charge of North East India and within short his first visit to Bangladesh in a business conclave make it clear that India wants a strong economic relation with Bangladesh. V K Sing’s Visit also makes a crystal- clear that India wants to explore the opportunity of North East India with the help of Bangladesh because it will be easy if transit and port facility of Bangladesh can use India properly. In this Dhaka conclave, the economy advisor of the Prime Minister of Bangladesh has said that, Bangladesh will make a bondage house in Chittagong port for North East India. Therefore, it can be said that, a good economic relation days are coming soon.

Swadesh Roy, Executive Editor, The Daily Janakantha, Dhaka, Bangladesh and long term contributor to Sri Lanka Guardian, he can be reached swadeshroy@gmail.com

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