'Govt deceiving people over transit'

BNP has accused the government of deceiving the people as regards providing transit facilities to India. Full report

Published : 10 Sept 2011, 03:45 AM
Updated : 10 Sept 2011, 03:45 AM
Dhaka, Sep 10 (bdnews24.com) - BNP has accused the government of deceiving the people as regards providing transit facilities to India.
Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, acting secretary-general of the main opposition told a meeting on Saturday that the government had already given away a transit corridor to India.
The opposition spokesman referred to para 41 of the 65 point joint statement of the two prime ministers issued on Sep 7 and said that it clearly mentioned that necessary formalities would have to be completed to facilitate the use of Chittagong and Mongla ports for Indian goods.
"Who says the government has not conceded a corridor? The government is deceiving the people with its lies."
Even though Feni and Teesta water sharing pacts was supposed to be signed during Manmohan's visit, last minute objections on part of the West Bengal state government about the distribution of water led to the deal not happening. The two countries also did not exchange a letter of consent regarding transit.
The paragraph in question, reads, "The Prime Ministers directed that necessary formalities for the use of Chittagong and Mongla seaports for movement of goods to and from India through water, rail and road should be completed urgently."
The senior opposition leader likened 'corridor' to India's use of the two ports. His party is also against providing the neighbouring country with transit.
Speaking at the programme organised by Nationalist Cultural Party at the National Press Club, Fakhrul claimed that heavy equipment for Tripura's power plant could be taken by road from Ashuganj because the corridor has already been given.
Heavy equipment, from Kolkata for the Paltana Power Project was off loaded at the Ashuganj river port and taken across Akhaura-Agartala border into Tripura at the beginning of this year because Bangladesh allowed transhipment.
To facilitate this process, the government declared Ashuganj river ports as the fifth 'port of call' and second 'transhipment point' of the country. The two prime ministers agreed on these issues during Hasina's visit to New Delhi in January last year.
The BNP acting secretary general accused that the 'deals' prime minister Sheikh Hasina made during her 2010 visit include an 'agreement' to provide corridor.
"Which is why the government did not make the treaties public or present them in the parliament," he claimed.
Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher