India, Bangladesh to sign pacts on terrorism, organised crime

India, Bangladesh to sign pacts on terrorism, organised crime

Sheikh Hasina

The two countries will also sign an MoU on cooperation in the power sector during the three-day visit that is expected to give a push to the bilateral relations in the backdrop of recent positive atmospherics.

Clearing the way for their signing, the Union Cabinet on Saturday approved an agreement on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters and a pact on Combating International Terrorism, Organised Crime and Illicit Drug Trafficking.

The meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, also gave a nod to the MoU on sharing of power between the two countries, official sources said.

The Cabinet had earlier approved an agreement on Transfer of Sentenced Persons, which also will be signed on Monday after the talks between Singh and Hasina, who is making her maiden trip to India after taking over last January.

The agreements are aimed at addressing India's concerns with regard to north-east insurgents taking shelter in Bangladesh as a legal framework would be put in place to transfer them, including those having undergone sentences in that country.

India has a lot of expectations on this front from the Hasina government. Dhaka has already taken a number of discreet measures to deny safe haven to north-east insurgents, which is reflected by the arrest of some top ULFA leaders like Arabinda Rajkhowa.

The MoU on power provides for import and export of electricity to the tune of over 900 million units per annum depending on availability, need and price, the sources said.
The price and various modalities for exchange of power will be worked out later for the MoU under which about 250 MW is expected to be exchanged initially and eventually it could touch 1,000 MW.

Energy-deficient Bangladesh will receive the power from Indian grids in West Bengal and Tripura.

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