Bangladesh Democracy will go stronger in future : Pranab

Dhaka: President Pranab Mukherjee on Monday expressed confidence that Bangladesh’s democratic traditions would grow stronger with time.

Addressing the students of the university, located close to Shahbag Square – the scene of massive protests by the youth demanding death penalty for those guilty of war crimes, Mukherjee said, “Young men and women like you are the engine of socio-economic development of our region.

Four northeastern states – Tripura, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Assam – share a 1,880-km border with Bangladesh, and a large number of people reside just along the border.

“The geographical location of Bangladesh is an advantage that must be fully explored and exploited. Bangladesh lies at the cross-roads of South and South-East Asia. India and Bangladesh can lead the way towards greater integration within our region and beyond in South East Asia,” he said.

Referring to the two outstanding issues between India and Bangladesh, Teesta and the Land Boundary Agreement, Mukherjee said the Indian government proposed to introduce a Constitutional Amendment Bill in Parliament to give effect to the provisions of the Land Boundary Agreement with Bangladesh and its 2011 Protocol. We are committed to working closely with Bangladesh to avoid any untoward incidents on our border. We can together make it a gateway of peace and mutually beneficial cooperation.

On Teesta, he said: “The sharing of the waters of our common rivers is a high priority for us. We have successfully forged agreements in the past and are hopeful of arriving at an early accord on the sharing of the Teesta waters.”

“Looking at you, I am convinced that the future of Bangladesh is bright. I wish you all every success in making the dream of Sonar Bangla a reality. India will stand by your side as you shape the destiny of your country.”

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