Visit of Prime Minister Modi to Bangladesh

On 6 June 2015, during the two-day visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Bangladesh, India and opened a new chapter in their ties as they settled the 41-year-old boundary dispute and promised to do more in other areas amid Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement of a fresh line of credit of $2 billion.

Both countries inked as many as 22 agreements, including on curbing human trafficking, smuggling of fake currency and setting up an Indian Economic Zone, to boost bilateral ties.

The agreements were signed in the presence of Prime Minister Modi, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

With West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee standing by his side, Mr Modi, on his maiden visit to Bangladesh, also expressed confidence to have a “fair solution” to the Teesta and Feni river water sharing issues with Bangladesh “with the support of State governments in India”.

Exchange of Instruments of Ratification of 1974 Land Boundary Agreement and its 2011 Protocol, Exchange of letters on Modalities for implementation of 1974 Land Boundary Agreement and a renewed Bilateral Trade Agreement were inked.

Agreements on two key bus services were also reached, including the Kolkata-Dhaka-Agartala route that will benefit the commuters by reducing travel time by nearly one-third.

Dhaka-Shillong-Guwahati bus service was flagged off by the three leaders.

In another key development, a Memorandum of Understanding for Extending a New Line of Credit (LoC) of US$ 2 billion by India to Bangladesh was signed.

A renewed Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Trade, besides an Aagreement on Coastal Shipping were among the other deals reached.

With an aim to boost bilateral trade, Bangladesh offered to establish Special Economic Zones for Indian companies, besides allowing Life Insurance Corporation to start operation in the country.

Prime Minister Modi also paid homage to the martyrs of the 1971 War of Liberation in which India had played a major role.

Former Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was conferred Award of Bangladesh Liberation War Honour for his “active role” in the country’s independence struggle and consolidating India’s friendship with the nation. Bangladesh President Abdul Hamid handed over the award to Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a glittering ceremony at Bangabhaban, the President’s house.

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