Bangladeshi Foreign Minister A K Abdul Momen cancelled his three-day visit to India beginning Thursday, a day after he termed as “untrue” Home Minister Amit Shah’s comments on persecution of religious minorities in Bangladesh.
The External Affairs Ministry said Momen has conveyed to India about postponement of his visit from December 12-14 due to scheduling issues, and asserted that Shah referred to religious persecution in Bangladesh during the military rule and not under the the current government.
Diplomatic sources said Momen decided not to go ahead with the visit due to prevailing situation arising out of passage of the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in India’s Parliament.
“The Bangladesh side has conveyed that the minister has changed his programme on account of domestic issues pertaining to the commemoration of the ‘Victory Day’ in Bangladesh on December 16,” MEA Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said at a media briefing.
“Any speculation that this development is connected with legislation adopted by Parliament on Wednesday regarding the Citizenship Amendment Bill is unwarranted,” he said, adding ties between the two countries were going through a “golden phase”.