Dhaka: Former Bangladeshi premier and
opposition leader Khaleda Zia on Friday asked India to step up
efforts to sort of irritants affecting bilateral ties,
including casualties caused by alleged shootouts by BSF.
"The Indian government should take the matter
seriously as Bangladeshis in border areas feel insecure as
innocent people are being killed regularly in shootouts," by
Border Security Force (BSF) soldiers, opposition leader's
foreign affairs adviser Shamsher Mobin Chowdhury told newsmen
quoting her as telling visiting Vice President Hamid Ansari.
He said Zia told the India leader that dialogue
between Bangladesh and India should continue involving all
political parties to reach solutions to some outstanding
problems between the two countries and increase confidence
between the two peoples.
"Ultimately it would help to strengthen relations
between the two neighbouring countries," she added.
Ansari, he said, told Zia that the Indian government
and people want to build good relations with Bangladesh while
he also acknowledged BNP to be a "big political force" in
Chowdhury said the Indian vice president also assured
her that the Indian government would talk with all political
parties in Bangladesh as part of its efforts for enhanced
Dhaka-New Delhi relation witnessed ups and downs since
1971 but it was said to have witnessed its lowest ebb during
2001-2006 tenure of Zia's BNP-led four party coalition
But Zia's concern on frontier casualties came weeks
after the ruling Awami League government of Prime Minister
Sheikh Hasina protested frontier casualties in shootouts by
Indian border guards.
BNP earlier criticised the government for not taking
adequate steps to stop the border killings in BSF shootouts
while an unidentified group published a poster carrying
"misleading messages" following the death of a teenaged
girl death in northwestern Lalmonirhat borders.
New Delhi earlier "regretted" the death as talks of
BSF shootouts dominated the dialogue between home secretaries
of the two countries three months ago.
First Published: Friday, May 06, 2011, 18:45