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Mamata Banerjee assures Bangladesh of resolving Teesta issue

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Friday called on Bangladesh President Mohammad Abdul Hamid and asked the neighbouring nation to have faith in her to resolve the Teesta water-sharing dispute.



Dhaka: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Friday called on Bangladesh President Mohammad Abdul Hamid and asked the neighbouring nation to have faith in her to resolve the Teesta water-sharing dispute.

"I am a small person, a down-to-earth person. From my side, I have solved the LBA (land boundary agreement) problem. Have faith in (me to resolve) Teesta too," Banerjee said on her maiden visit to Bangladesh after taking over the reins of West Bengal, according to a bdnews24.com report.

Banerjee said she discussed matters of mutual interest with Hamid aimed at further strengthening ties between the two nations.

"Today I had the opportunity to call upon H.E. Md Abdul Hamid, the Honourable President of Republic of Bangladesh. We discussed various matters of mutual interest," Banerjee tweeted.

She said Hamid also fondly remembered his recent visit to India and Kolkata in particular.

"Our discussion centred around issues to further strengthen the cordial and strong bonding we have between Bangladesh and West Bengal," said Banerjee.

The Teesta water sharing pact has been put on hold following the West Bengal chief minister`s strong opposition, over fears that the treaty could spell disaster for the northern part of her state.

In September 2011, Banerjee had embarrassed then Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh by pulling out of the prime minister-led delegation to Bangladesh over the water sharing agreement, forcing India to drop it from the agenda.

On the land boundary agreement, Banerjee had emphasised on a rehabilitation package for the enclave dwellers and noted that she was very positive about the issue being settled this time around.

Once the LBA is passed, India will cede 111 enclaves totally measuring 17,160 acres to Bangladesh and receive 51 enclaves covering 7,110 acres. More than 51,000 people reside in these enclaves.

Banerjee, who is leading a delegation that includes a number of cultural personalities, met leading lights of Bangladeshi films, literature, drama and music Friday morning.

"Luminaries from the world of literature, film, drama, music from both sides met for a heart to heart interaction in (a) stimulating environment.

"We discussed how cultural exchanges can mutually benefit and further strengthen long standing relation between Bangladesh and West Bengal," she said.

The chief minister, who last went to Bangladesh 17 years back during the silver jubilee year of the Awami League, also visited the Bangabandhu National Museum.

During her three-day trip to Bangladesh that began Thursday, Banerjee is also scheduled to meet the country`s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

The chief minister, who is undertaking the trip on an invitation by Bangladesh Foreign Minister A.H. Mahmood Ali, will attend the main function at Dhaka`s Shaheed Minar on the occasion of Mother Language Day Feb 21, which commemorates the martyrdom of Bangladeshi youths during the Language Movement in 1952.

Banerjee is also scheduled to address a business conclave organised by the India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IBCCI) in association with the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) and the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC), Kolkata.

From Zee News

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