New Delhi: India is fully committed to be a partner in Bangladesh's economic development, President Pranab Mukherjee has said.
During a meeting with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, who called on the President at the Rashtrapati Bhavan yesterday, Mukherjee also said the ties between the two countries are growing from strength to strength.
"Cooperation in the field of connectivity, power, energy, trade, capacity building and infrastructure development is especially praiseworthy. India is fully committed to be a partner in Bangladesh s economic development," a press release issued by Rashtrapati Bhavan today quoted the President as having said.
Geographical proximity and connectivity are advantages that must be leveraged to mutual benefit, Mukherjee said.
He expressed hoped that the announcement of over USD 5 billion of Indian concessionary financing for infrastructure projects in Bangladesh over the next couple of years will usher in more development for Bangladesh.
The President said India deeply appreciates Hasina's role in giving a new direction to the India-Bangladesh relationship and making it what it is today strong, vibrant and exemplary partnership.
Mukherjee said Bangladesh's commitment to strengthening democracy, rule of law, pluralism and human dignity and to ensuring peace, security and stability in the country is commendable.
Welcoming Hasina, the President also remembered his visit to Bangladesh in March 2013. He also appreciated her for visit in August 2015 to attend the last rites of his wife.
The President said Bangladesh's gesture of honouring the Indian soldiers martyred during the 1971 Liberation War is highly appreciated in India.
"India considers it a demonstration of solidarity and a symbol of the unique history of bilateral ties. There is much that unites the two countries - a shared history and common heritage, linguistic and cultural ties, passion for music, literature and the arts," Mukherjee said.
He congratulated Bangladesh on successfully hosting the 136th Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly in Dhaka last week and also the 9th Global Forum on Migration and Development in December 2016.