PM Modi slams Pak; hails Bangladesh policies at Mujibur birth anniversary event
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday took a swipe at Pakistan for using terror as an instrument of state policy while praising Bangladesh for the progress it has made due to its inclusive and development-oriented policies.
In a video message delivered during celebrations in Dhaka to mark the birth anniversary of the founder of Bangladesh, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Modi said the country is setting new benchmarks in the economy and social indices. Without naming Pakistan, he said: “We are all witnessing how making terror and violence weapons of politics and diplomacy, destroys society and a nation. The world is also watching where the supporters of terror and violence are currently placed and in what state they are, while Bangladesh is scaling new heights.”
Modi’s speech made no reference to recent irritants in India-Bangladesh ties, including Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s questioning of the necessity of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) and widespread protests in the neighbouring country against the violence in Delhi. Modi was expected to be one of the key speakers at the birth centenary celebrations, but deferred his visit after Bangladesh scaled-down and postponed several events because of COVID-19.
Modi played up the improvement in ties between the two sides in various fields in recent years.
“In the past five to six years, India and Bangladesh have scripted a golden chapter of bilateral ties… It is because of increasing trust … that we have been able to amicably resolve complex issues like land boundary and maritime boundary.” Bangladesh is now India’s biggest trading partner in South Asia and “electricity generated in India is lighting up lakhs of houses and factories in Bangladesh”, he said.
Modi praised “Bangabandhu” Rahman as one of the greatest personalities of the last century and a “champion of justice, equality and dignity”. “The life of Bangabandhu gives a great message to the world of the 21st century. We all are well aware of how a repressive and cruel regime, disregarding all democratic values, unleashed a reign of injustice on ‘Bangla Bhumi,” he said.