Mamata's new proposal on sharing water fails to enthuse Bangladesh PM

Mamata's new proposal on sharing water fails to enthuse Bangladesh PM

Mamata's new proposal on sharing water fails to enthuse Bangladesh PM
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's new proposal to end the impasse over India-Bangladesh agreement on sharing of water of common river Teesta apparently failed to have enthused Dhaka.

Referring to Banerjee as "Didimoni" (stern elder sister), Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday said that she was not sure how West Bengal Chief Minister would act on the issue of Teesta.

Hasina said that when India and Bangladesh would be able to clinch the deal on sharing of water of river Teesta, the bilateral relations between the two nations would undergo "another transformation".

"Lekin pata nahi Didimini kya karenge? Unhone to naya hi kuch dikha dia. (But I don't know what Didimoni would do. She brought out something new," she said with a smile and dismissive gesture.

"Modiji (Prime Minister Narendra Modi), however, assured us that he would try to end the impasse," Bangladesh Prime Minister said while delivering a speech at an event held by India Foundation.

Hasina was on a four-day visit to New Delhi since Friday.  She would return to Dhaka by evening on Monday.

Banerjee, her Government and her party Trinamool Congress have been opposing the New Delhi's move to enter into an agreement with Dhaka for sharing the water of Teesta since 2011.

She joined Modi and Hasina for a lunch which Prime Minister hosted for his counterpart from the neighbouring country on Saturday.

She conveyed to both Prime Ministers that Teesta did not have enough water and not only people in Bangladesh even farmers of her state were being hit by water scarcity. She said while it was difficult for West Bengal Government to give nod to an agreement for sharing water of river Teesta with Bangladesh, it could consider agreeing to similar agreement on Torsa and four other rivers, which too flows through northern region of her state before entering the neighbouring country.

Sources told the DH that Banerjee's new proposal had appeared to be a diversionary move not only to officials accompanying Bangladesh Prime Minister, but also to several officials of Government of India.

Modi on Saturday said that only his Government in New Delhi and Hasina's Government in Dhaka could find an early solution to the row over sharing the water of Teesta.