Narendra Modi inaugurates Bangladesh Bhavan in Santiniketan; Sheikh Hasina raises Rohingya refugee crisis

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Bangladesh Bhavan on Friday with his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee. At the inauguration, the prime minister said that the Bangladesh Bhavan is a reflection of the two nations' cultural ties.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee. PTI

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee. PTI

He also invoked Rabindranath Tagore and said that his legacy has bound India and Bangladesh together. Hailing the ties between the two nations, he said that India has opened new ways of connectivity with Bangladesh. Modi further said that the two countries will work towards the progress of the youth.

The prime minister also congratulated Sheikh Hasina and expressed happiness that the two nations stay in touch with each other.

Meanwhile, Hasina raked up the Rohingya crisis during her address. She reportedly said Rohingyas have taken shelter in Bangladesh. "We've given them a place on humanitarian grounds. We want them to return to their country as early as possible. I request you to help us to interact with Myanmar so that they take Rohingyas back," she was quoted as saying by ANI.

The Bangladesh prime minister also talked about Tagore and said that he belongs to both the countries because he has written the national anthems of both the nations. "He wrote most of his poems in Bangladesh and that is why we can claim a greater right over him," she added.

Earlier in the day, Modi and Hasina attended the convocation ceremony of Visva-Bharati University. During his address at the university, he said that India and Bangladesh are two separate countries bonded by co-operation and understanding.

Apart from Hasina, Modi shared the dais with Banerjee and the university Vice-Chancellor Sabujkoli Sen.

"Be it culture or public policy, the people of the two countries get to learn a lot from each other," the prime minister said. One such example is Bangladesh Bhavan, Modi asserted.

The Bangladesh Bhavan at Santiniketan will house a library, a state-of-the-art archival centre, and a seminar hall, besides a sprawling space for cultural get-togethers. Apart from the literary works of Rabindranath Tagore, the centre will also showcase books and photographs on the Bangladesh Liberation War and India's role in it.

Modi and Hasina are expected to hold informal talks later. The issue of Rohingya crisis and Teesta Water Dispute is likely to come up in their discussion.

With inputs from PTI


Updated Date: May 25, 2018 15:38 PM

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