Frustrated by Teesta deal postponement: Zia to PM
Last Updated: Wednesday, September 07, 2011, 22:49
Dhaka: Opposition leader and former premier Khaleda Zia on Wednesday expressed frustration over the failure to ink a pact on sharing of waters of common rivers between India and Bangladesh as she met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here.

The agreement on river water sharing, which was supposed to be an important component of Singh's visit, was postponed at the last minute due to objections from West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, and the development ruffled many a feather in Bangladesh.

Zia called on Singh on the last day of his visit and made plain her disappointment.

"She (Zia) said she was upset as there has been no substantial progress in sharing the waters of common rivers," BNP vice-chairman Shamser Mobin Chowdhury told newsmen after the meeting.

He said the Prime Minister "regretted and assured" the Bangladesh Nationalist Party chairperson that the river water issues "will be settled soon on priority basis through discussions".

Zia, he said, also requested the Prime Minister to keep a scope for future changes in the deals that have been signed during his visit so that the agreements may be revised in future if deemed necessary in the interests of both countries.

During her 25-minute meeting with Singh, the opposition leader told him that BNP wanted a sustainable long-term relationship with India.

"BNP always wants to maintain warm relations with India. But all the deals must be signed on the basis of equity and special attention has to be given on sensitive issues. We expected deals on common rivers' water sharing," he quoted her as telling Singh.


First Published: Wednesday, September 07, 2011, 22:49

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