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Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee slams PM Modi for 'unilateral' talks with Bangladesh on Teesta water sharing
Photo courtesy: PMO X handle

Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee slams PM Modi for 'unilateral' talks with Bangladesh on Teesta water sharing

| @indiablooms | 24 Jun 2024, 07:29 pm

Kolkata/New Delhi: West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress leader Mamata Banerjee on Monday slammed the Centre for excluding her from the discussions between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

She conveyed her objections to the talks on water-sharing between the Centre and Bangladesh.

Underscoring the close relationship between Kolkata and Dhaka, CM Banerjee said, "Such unilateral deliberations and discussions without consultation and the opinion of the state government are neither acceptable nor desirable."

During the recent bilateral meeting between PM Modi and Bangladesh's Sheikh Hasina, discussions focused on the conservation and management of the River Teesta, as well as the renewal of the 1996 Ganga Water Treaty.

Following the meeting, PM Modi announced that a technical team would soon visit Bangladesh to address issues related to the "conservation and management of the Teesta River."

Under the agreement, India plans to construct a large reservoir and associated infrastructure to conserve and manage Teesta water.

These developments have elicited strong reactions from Mamata Banerjee, who has long opposed the water sharing agreement, citing concerns that the Farakka barrage contributes to erosion, siltation, and floods in her state.

"People of West Bengal will be the worst sufferers due to the impact of such agreements. I came to understand that the Government of India is in the process of renewing the Indo Bangladesh Farakka Treaty (1996) which is to expire in 2026. It is a Treaty which delineates the principles of sharing of water between Bangladesh and India and as you are aware it has huge implications for the people of West Bengal for maintaining their livelihood and that the water which is diverted at the Farakka Barrage helps in maintaining the navigability of the Kolkata port," she said in the letter to PM Modi.

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