DHAKA: Railway would be a better option for India compared to roadway if Bangladesh allows transit facilities for
transportation of goods towards North-Eastern States (NES) known as seven sisters, experts told a seminar.
They opined that Bangladesh-India partnership in transit would be beneficial for both the neighbours.
However, Bangladesh will have to move forward cautiously, considering security concerns, as the landlocked NES face
“Railways are better option as it can carry a large amount of goods at a time. It has low accidents rate and pilferage. It
is also environment-friendly, cost-effective and basic railway infrastructures already exist,” said KAS Murshid, Research
Director of Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS), at the seminar.
BIDS organized the seminar on ‘India, Bangladesh and the North East: Transit and Transshipment-Strategic Considerations’
with Director-General of the autonomous development-research outfit Dr. M Asaduzzamanin in the chair at the CIRDAP
Commerce Minister Mohammad Faruk Khan, who was present at the seminar, said Bangladesh can be benefited by strengthening
relationship with India’s landlocked northeast.
KAS Murshid proposed an exclusion list that will prevent transportation of arms and ammunition, explosives, drugs and other
items deemed to be a threat to national security. There should be modern scanning system as well, he said.
Farooq Sobhan, President of Bangladesh Enterprise Institute (BEI), said transit would provide access to Bangladeshi products
not only to NES but also to Nepal and Bhutan in the near future.
Dr. Imtiaz Ahmed, professor of International Relations of Dhaka University, said, “Transit may be a golden opportunity for
us if we can handle it.”
Manjur Ahmed, consultant of FBCCI, said Bangladesh should not allow transit to India for products that would harm
BDST: 1710 HRS. JU