March 24, 2016
NEW DELHI: Taking Indo-Bangladesh relations forward, India has begun supplying
electricity to Bangladesh in return for Internet bandwidth to connect the north-
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina on
Wednesday launched the projects through video conference.
Modi inaugurated the 100 megawatt (MW) power supply from Tripura to
Bangladesh while Sheikh Hasina switched on the supply of 10 Gigabits per second
“In my opinion this is an historic occasion,” Modi said, adding
India is marching shoulder-to-shoulder with Bangladesh in its progress and today
is the opening of a new chapter. "In an era of inter-dependent world, the two
nations have further strengthened their ties."
“The relation between the countries has further consolidated through the supply of
power and Internet bandwidth,” said Hasina.
For the power supply, the PowerGrid Corporation of India Ltd has erected 400 KV
line from Suryamaninagar (Agartala) to the Indian border. The PowerGrid
Corporation of Bangladesh has laid a line from there to Comilla.
A new gateway to give broadband connectivity to the North-East States via
Bangladesh was also opened.
“We have gateways in west and south but the entire east was untouched. As part
of my Act East policy, this gateway in the east is very important. The opening of
eastern gateway in association with Bangladesh will bring connectivity to eastern
region, particularly Assam, Tripura and Sikkim,” Modi said.
Road connectivity between Bangladesh, Nepal, India and Bhutan had been
initiated. "Today we are doing electricity and digital connectivity... we have to
cooperate in space too. It is our desire that Bangladesh joins India in space
satellite mission too," he said.
"Bangladesh would observe its National day on March 26 and I pay my respect to
the memory of the Father of the Nation of Bangladesh. The era of good relations
began during the time of 'Bangabandhu' between the two countries which still
continues," said Modi.
Hasina said: "We always remember India's cooperation during the liberation
movement in 1971."
Hasina said her country was getting 500 MW power from India at present. She
also thanked Prime Minister Modi and Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar for their
Bangladesh Submarine Cable Co Ltd (BSCCL) has laid a 30-km optical fibre cable
from Brahmanbaria to Akhaura, adjoining Agartala, while the State-owned Bharat
Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) has set up an international long distance (ILD) gateway
at Agartala along with associated equipment. There is an international bandwidth
cable at Cox's Bazaar in Bangladesh.
Telecom connectivity or basic bandwidth for networks till now was provided to the
North East from Chennai via Kolkata.