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Teesta pact unlikely during PM visit, efforts still on

By The Assam Tribune

DHAKA, Sept 6 (IANS): India and Bangladesh were "unlikely to sign" an agreement on the sharing of the Teesta river waters during this visit but efforts were still on, a top Indian official said Tuesday as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh arrived here for a two-day trip.

"We are unlikely to sign during this visit. We are still trying," the official said. "The idea was to have an interim agreement."

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was supposed to accompany the prime minister for the Sep 6-7 visit but refused, to protest the final draft of the Teesta river water sharing agreement with Bangladesh.

The Teesta, which begins its journey in Sikkim, flows through north Bengal before entering Bangladesh.

"There was difference between the initial draft of the agreement and the final version. The state government had agreed on sharing of up to 25,000 cusecs. But the final version talks of sharing 33,000-50,000 cusecs," a source close to Banerjee had said in Kolkata.

She felt this would hurt West Bengal's interests, the source said.

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Teesta pact unlikely during PM visit, efforts still on

DHAKA, Sept 6 (IANS): India and Bangladesh were "unlikely to sign" an agreement on the sharing of the Teesta river waters during this visit but efforts were still on, a top Indian official said Tuesday as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh arrived here for a two-day trip.

"We are unlikely to sign during this visit. We are still trying," the official said. "The idea was to have an interim agreement."

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was supposed to accompany the prime minister for the Sep 6-7 visit but refused, to protest the final draft of the Teesta river water sharing agreement with Bangladesh.

The Teesta, which begins its journey in Sikkim, flows through north Bengal before entering Bangladesh.

"There was difference between the initial draft of the agreement and the final version. The state government had agreed on sharing of up to 25,000 cusecs. But the final version talks of sharing 33,000-50,000 cusecs," a source close to Banerjee had said in Kolkata.

She felt this would hurt West Bengal's interests, the source said.