Tripura Chief Minister (CM) Professor Dr Manik Saha has expressed his desire to visit Dhaka to meet Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina as the visiting Jatiya Press Club (JPC) delegation called on him.
The 17-member delegation of JPC led by its President Farida Yasmin and General Secretary Shyamal Dutta met the chief minister at his official residence in the capital of the north-eastern Indian state on Monday evening.
The chief minister said, “Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina regularly gifts me mangoes and I send her pineapple as gift, but I haven’t met her.”
After being elected as chief minister twice, he is yet to visit Bangladesh, Manik Saha said, adding: “I want to meet and talk with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina (on different issues).”
The CM said he has directed his officials to work on the visit as he is keen to meet the Sheikh Hasina before the upcoming national election of Bangladesh.
“I know Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has a special place for the people of Tripura in her heart,” he said, referring to Bangladesh as a close neighbour.
During the open discussion with the JPC delegation, the CM reminisced about the War of Liberation of Bangladesh.
Manik Saha also said political stability in Bangladesh is always expected.
He, as well, expressed his gratitude to Bangladesh and its government, saying that “insurgency in the North-East of India has been eliminated due to the concerted efforts of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina as well as Bangladesh-India relations.”
He noted: “If Bangladesh remains stable, the relationship between the two countries will reach another height in future.”
The CM also stressed the need of increasing people-to-people contact, saying the communication system with Bangladesh is improving gradually.
Apart from the existing communication ways, road connectivity through Subroom, air communication between Agartala and Chattogram as well rail communication will start soon, he added.
In a long discussion, Manik Saha talked about the fencing in border, saying that the barbed wire fence should be in the “no man’s land” area as it would help in stopping the violence of drug smugglers.
The CM, who is a well-known as dentist of Tripura, assured the JPC delegation to ease the visa process and stop any sort of immigration harassment.
The JPC delegation arrived here on September 1 on a three-day visit at the invitation of Agartala Press Club.
During the visit, the JPC delegation on the third-day went to the “India-Bangladesh Moitree Uddyan” at Chottakhula in South Tripura where freedom fighters of Bangladesh during the War of Liberation set up camps for training and devising plan to conduct operations against the Pakistani occupation forces.
The freedom fighters, who embraced martyrdom in the war, were laid to eternal rest in the mass graveyard of the uddyan (garden) here.
Apart from visiting different tourist destinations and meetings with both political leaders and government officials, Bangladesh Jatiya Press Club team also participated in a friendly cricket match with Agartala Press Club.