India, Bangladesh to ensure ‘zero incident’ of skirmishes: MEA

India, Bangladesh to ensure ‘zero incident’ of skirmishes: MEA

Agency News

New Delhi, Oct 4 : India and Bangladesh would focus on enhancing bilateral ties including on people to people level contacts, trade relations and will strive to ensure that skirmishes in the border come down to 'zero'.

The visiting Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will hold bilateral level talks with PM Narendra Modi here on Friday, MEA spokesman Raveesh Kumar said. "It is important to understand that due to concerted efforts by the two sides including border guards in both countries and under the leadership of two Prime Ministers, the number of such incidents have actually come down drastically...," Mr Kumar told reporters here.

He said: "But we are doing now, we are trying to discuss that following the demarcation based on the Land Boundary Agreement, whether we can bring these incidents to zero".

The spokesman underlined - "how this has to be done, this will be discussed between the two sides". However, he said some of the 'isolated incidents' are regretted by both sides and thus border guards from both countries will see that such incidents do not recur.

To a question whether Teesta water share issue will figure at the talks, MEA spokesman said India's position on the same is well known to Bangladesh. "Apart from Teesta there are at least seven other trans border rivers," he said.

Reports from Dhaka earlier indicates that a framework for water-sharing of multiple rivers may be signed. The rivers include the Manu, Muhuri, Khowai, Feni, Gumti, Dharla, Dudhkumar and possibly Teesta. Besides, the two sides are also to deliberate on enhancing cooperation in flood forecasting and basin-wide river management. The Teesta water-sharing agreement could not be signed since 2011 due to objections from West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. India and Bangladesh share as many as 54 common rivers among them. (UNI)