Dhaka, Jan 30: Underscoring the importance of 2021 in the context of the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh's liberation, the 50th year of bilateral diplomatic ties as well as the birth centenary of father of the nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, India and Bangladesh have decided to further strengthen the ongoing coordination to jointly commemorate these anniversaries.
Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen and his Indian counterpart Harsh Vardhan Shringla co-chaired Foreign Office Consultations in New Delhi to prepare for the forthcoming visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Dhaka in March to attend the golden jubilee celebrations of Bangladesh's independence and commemoration of the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two countries, India's Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement after the talks on Friday.
In this context, both sides expressed appreciation at the Bangladesh tri-service contingent's participation in the 2021 Republic Day Parade, and noted its significance in reminding present generations in both countries about the struggle and sacrifices of Indian and Bangladesh forces and peoples during the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War, it said.
Both Bin Momen and Shringla noted with appreciation the close cooperation on Covid-19 related issues, including India's gift of 2 million doses of Covishield vaccines to Bangladesh in keeping with its Neighbourhood First Policy.
Both countries again committed to maintain the steady momentum of bilateral cooperation and people-to-people ties. In this regard, both sides noted with satisfaction the renewal of the Air Travel Bubble arrangement that will facilitate essential travel between the two sides.
The foreign office consultations expressed satisfaction at the intensity of bilateral exchanges continuing steadily despite Covid-19, and decided to enhance cooperation in a slew of sectors including Covid-19, trade, connectivity, development partnership, power, energy and water resources, regional and multilateral cooperation as well as border management and security and defence while holding a comprehensive review of the progress achieved in these so far.
Both sides noted the importance of swift implementation of the Lines of Credit in the bilateral development partnership. Expressing satisfaction that the high-level development partnership monitoring mechanism was operationalised with its first meeting held on January 3, both sides stressed the need to increase the utilisation of funds and streamlining and expediting approval processes.
It was also agreed to hold the next Home Secretary-level talks, Commerce Secretary-level talks and the Secretary-level meeting of the Joint Rivers Commission before the March 2021 summit. - IANS.