Mamata not to oppose Land Boundary deal | Greenwatch Dhaka | The leading online daily of Bangladesh

Mamata not to oppose Land Boundary deal


Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh will have a face-saving ‘good news’ to convey to Bangladesh prime minister Sheikh Hasina when the two meet in midtown Manhattan on Saturday.He will tell Hasina of his government’s resolve to introduce the 119th constitutional bill to operationalise the land boundary agreement between the two countries during the winter session of the parliament in December.
“The Prime Minister can tell her Bangladesh counterpart of the new found optimism in getting the bill passed in parliament,” said a top Indian foreign ministry official.
The reason : West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerji seems to have agreed not to oppose the bill.
After her party lawmakers oppose the bill in the last parliament session, foreign minister Salman Khurshid touched base with Mamata Banerji who set up a three-member committee of her party to negotiate with the central government on the issue.
The committee headed by former railway minister Mukul Roy has belatedly assured the Indian government that the Trinamul will not oppose the introduction of the bill .
“They say they still have reservations about the bill but they will not oppose it . Even if they don’t vote in support, the bill will go through anyway,” said a top Congress leader.
The BJP has already decided not to oppose the bill, despite initial reservations, after Bangladesh foreign minister Dipu Moni met BJP leader in Rajya Sabha (Upper House) Arun Jaitley during her last India visit and explained its importance for the ruling Awami League in an election year.
If Trinamul Congress also backs off from opposing the bill, only the Asom Gana Parishad, a regional Assamese party, will be left to oppose it.
Trinamul Congress had initially not opposed the Land Boundary agreement and the West Bengal chief secretary had written to Indian foreign secretary in August 2011 approving it.
That was when Mamata Banerji’s party had already been in power for three months.
Her opposition perhaps follows her rupture with the Congress, following which her party withdrew from the UPA coalition .
The chief secretary’s letter was recently flashed in the Indian media after Trinamul lawmakers opposed the bill’s introduction in the Rajya Sabha.
Mamata has been roundly attacked in the India media , where commentators have strongly pushed for bill to be passed in newspaper, magazine and TV programmes in an unusual display of media consensus on a foreign policy issue despite the political divide.


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