No room for doubt if Bangladesh, India are to prosper together: Doraiswami

  • Staff Correspondent, bdnews24.com
    Published: 2021-02-24 03:35:41 BdST

Vikram Doraiswami, the Indian high commissioner to Bangladesh, has underlined the importance of people-to-people relationships, saying they need to leave behind suspicion and doubt for the sake of prosperity.

"What we should do is destroy the suspicions and doubt, because there is no room for suspicion and doubt,” he said at a seminar at the National Press Club in Dhaka on Tuesday.

“The world is moving fast today. The faster we can cooperate with each other, the more we could be able to prosper together,” Doraiswami added.

The high commissioner spoke at the seminar titled ‘Bangabandhu: Bangladesh-India relation’ organised by Indian Media Correspondents Association, Bangladesh or IMCAB.

He empathised working together in culture, film, media, business, travel and transport, and finding ways to ‘prosper together’ based on principles of sustainable relationships set during the time of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

“Because I have seen how prosperity grows as cooperation grows. So there is no good for me that should not be good for you; and there is no good for you that should not be good for me. If we take this principle, we will be following the spirit of Bangabandhu’s leadership,” the high commissioner said.

He referenced the signing of the protocols and agreements on water sharing, land boundaries, trade, transport and other areas of cooperation.

“Again it took us over 35 years to be able to restart the work what Bangabandhu richly envisioned”, Doraiswami said, referring to the Ganges water-sharing treaty.

Information Minister Hasan Mahmud speaking at a discussion organised by Indian Media Correspondents Association on Bangabandhu and Bangladesh-India ties at the National Press Club in Dhaka on Tuesday, Feb 23, 2021. Photo: Asif Mahmud Ove

Information Minister Hasan Mahmud speaking at a discussion organised by Indian Media Correspondents Association on Bangabandhu and Bangladesh-India ties at the National Press Club in Dhaka on Tuesday, Feb 23, 2021. Photo: Asif Mahmud Ove

He said the friendship between Bangladesh and India has been forged in the liberation of Bangladesh and in the four years of Bangabandhu’s life as the leader of independent Bangladesh.

“Imagine how much progress we could have achieved had Bangabandhu continued to lead Bangladesh and had he not been felled by the assassin’s bullet,” the envoy said remembering the legacy of Bangabandhu.

Bangabandhu had already thought of every aspect of the relations between Bangladesh and India first, according to him.

“So essentially we don’t need a new rulebook or new guidebook to figure out how we to improve our relationship. Bangabandhu’s writings and Bangabandhu’s words give us the very good guidelines on what we should be doing,” he added.

Doraiswami said there is no difference between the aspirations of the Indian and the Bangladeshi people.

“And our aspirations are best satisfied when we can cooperate as closely as possible. Prosperity, security and safety and indeed the happiness of our people are all inter-connected."

Indian High Commissioner Vikram Doraiswami speaking at a discussion organised by Indian Media Correspondents Association on Bangabandhu and Bangladesh-India ties at the National Press Club in Dhaka on Tuesday, Feb 23, 2021. Photo: Asif Mahmud Ove

Indian High Commissioner Vikram Doraiswami speaking at a discussion organised by Indian Media Correspondents Association on Bangabandhu and Bangladesh-India ties at the National Press Club in Dhaka on Tuesday, Feb 23, 2021. Photo: Asif Mahmud Ove

“As we have seen today, Bangladesh is our largest trading partner in South Asia, Bangladesh is our largest partner for travel and movement of people in the world today. Bangladesh is our most important market for travel.”

Doraiswami said the relationship between Bangladesh and India is “at the highest peak since after 1975”.

“We need to invest in ensuring that the people part of our relationship grows. And that essentially involves increasing partnerships in education, increasing partnerships in business and ensuring that in every step of the way we try and see what we can do together,” he said.

Addressing the seminar as chief guest, Information Minister Hasan Mahmud said the BNP and some other parties try to campaign based on anti-India sentiments.

“They don’t understand it is not possible to prosper showing enmity towards the neighbouring countries. Even if they understand, they use it for their political malpractices."

Bangladesh has solved the land boundary dispute and many other issues with India based on the path created by Bangabandhu, he added.

IMCAB President Basudeb Dhar presided over the discussion while Haroon Habib, general secretary of the Sector Commanders Forum, was the keynote speaker.

Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury, editor of The Daily Observer, Monjurul Ahsan Bulbul, former president of the Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists, and Quddus Afrad, president of Dhaka Union of Journalists, also spoke at the event.