New Delhi: External Affairs Minister S M Krishna Wednesday embarked on an official visit to Bangladesh during which he is expected to convey India`s commitment to forging a strong and enduring relationship with the people and
government of the neighbouring country.
During talks with the Bangla leadership, Krishna will
review the entire gamut of bilateral relations ahead of Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh`s September 6-7- visit there.
Krishna`s three-day trip comes against the backdrop of Singh`s remarks last Wednesday about 25 per cent of Bangladeshis being anti-Indian, which kicked up an uproar in
The two countries have since downplayed the remarks
with Krishna himself denying suggestions that his trip was
being undertaken to repair the damage to bilateral relations
following the Prime Minister`s remarks.
The remarks by Singh were intended to be off-the-record
but figured in the official transcript of the interaction
between the Prime Minister and the Editors. The remarks were
later edited out of the official transcript.
The high point of Krishna`s stay in Dhaka will be
tomorrow`s meetings when he calls on Bangla premier Sheikh
Hasina and holds formal talks with Bangladesh Foreign Minister
The two sides are expected to sign several "bilateral
documents" on transit, a 15 year interim accord on Teesta
river water-sharing, joint ventures in power sector and
development projects under the one billion dollar Line of
Credit extended by India in January last year during Hasina`s
visit to Delhi.
Krishna`s visit is part of efforts to do the
spadework for working out the "deliverables" by India during
Singh`s visit to Dhaka when New Delhi is expected to come out
with a raft of unilateral trade concessions, including further
easing of Bangladeshi textile exports to Indian market, and an
agreement on border demarcation and adversely-held enclaves.