“The festival of Eid ul Azha, which is also celebrated in several parts of India, reminds us of our deep historical and cultural links. We hope that this festival will further enhance the spirit of peace and tolerance in our respective societies and promote fraternal ties between our two countries,” Modi wrote in his letter to Hasina.
“As both our countries continue to deal with the Covid-19 situation, we appreciate the steps being taken in Bangladesh under your able leadership. I am confident that Bangladesh will tide over these challenging times. We remain available to support your efforts in any way, including through capacity-building in the health sector,” the PM wrote in his letter.
India and Bangladesh relations in the recent past have witnessed pathbreaking events that belie the statements that have come in the recent past on the relations.
The two sides have just concluded the first successful trial movement of the container traffic through Chattogram port from Kolkata to Agartala. As part of the connectivity initiative 10 Broad Gauge (BG) locomotives were handed over to Bangladesh by external affairs minister S Jaishankar and railways minister Piyush Goyal on Monday.
Last Friday, the first container train to connect the two countries through Petrapole-Benapole border in West Bengal departed India. This train carried 40 containers of fast-moving consumer goods cargo and 10 containers of fabrics.
In June, Bangladesh railways had increased its monthly allocation of freight trains to Indian Railways by about a third. For the first time the Indian Railways ran a special parcel train beyond the country’s borders to Benapole in Bangladesh with dry chillies from Andhra Pradesh.
Both sides have also signed a second addendum to the protocol on Indian water trade and transit adding new ports of call and new routes. Both sides have been able to hold important meetings and have had two prime ministers speak to each three times since the outbreak of the pandemic.
Modi also delivered the inaugural address at the Mujib Barsho celebrations highlighting the golden chapter that India and Bangladesh have scripted in their ties. In the words of senior Bangladeshi politicians India is Bangladesh’s natural ally and foreign policy priority.