New Delhi: Explaining about the significant ties between New Delhi and Dhaka, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday said that she feels happy to be in India every time, especially because of its contribution during the liberation war. ‘India is our friend. Whenever I come here, it is pleasure for me, especially because we always recall the contribution India has made during our liberation war. We have a friendly relationship, we are cooperating with each other’, the Bangladeshi Prime Minister said today.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi received Bangladesh PM Hasina as she arrived at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. Hasina shook hands with PM Modi. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar was also present. Rashtrapati Bhavan was decked up for Hasina’s welcome. Hasina is set to meet President Droupadi Murmu and Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar today. Apart from it, she will also meet Prime Minister Modi. Hasina began her four-day visit to India yesterday as Bangladesh is an important partner under India’s ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy. Soon after arriving in New Delhi on Monday, Bangladesh Prime Minister met External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and discussed issues of bilateral interest. She also visited Nizamuddin Aulia Dargah, a prominent pilgrimage tourist attraction in Delhi.
PM Hasina was welcomed by Darshana Jardosh, Minister of State for Textiles and Railways in New Delhi upon her arrival here on Monday. Hasina’s visit is crucial and will further strengthen the multifaceted relationship between India and Bangladesh. Bangladesh Prime Minister also got clicked with the dancers who welcomed her. Issues which are on top of the agenda are upgrading defence cooperation, expanding regional connectivity initiatives and establishing stability in South Asia. This visit is her first visit after both nations’ bilateral relations touched their 50th year in 2021. Last year also marked the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh’s independence and the 100th birth anniversary of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the founding father of the nation.
PM Modi visited Bangladesh in 2021. Maitri Diwas celebrations were held in 20 capitals around the world including Delhi and Dhaka. Prime Ministers of both countries have met 12 times since 2015. India and Bangladesh have sought to create a model for regional cooperation besides reviving several connectivity initiatives over the last few years. The Akhaura-Agartala rail link will reopen soon, and it is anticipated that Agartala and Chittagong will be connected by air in a few weeks. India has been a hub of medical treatment for Bangladesh nationals. Of the 2.8 lakh visas issued in 2021, 2.3 lakh were medical visas. Bangladesh is currently India’s biggest visa operation globally. In 2019, 13.63 lakh visas were issued.