Indian FS likely to visit Dhaka Tuesday to boost ties

Dhaka, Aug 17 – Indian Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla is likely to arrive in Dhaka on a brief visit on Tuesday aiming to boost ties between the two neighbouring countries, an informed source said. It could not be known what is the purpose of the visit and but a diplomatic source indicates that the Indian Foreign Secretary is likely to meet Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, among others, and discuss ways to strengthen the bond between the two countries in the days to come.
The Foreign Secretary will also convey Delhi’s special message to Dhaka, according to the source.
Harsh Vardhan will leave for home the same day, wrapping up his brief visit.
Asked about the sudden visit, a senior official told UNB that it is something positive but did not elaborate further.
However, there has been no official announcement on the visit.
Shringla, who served as Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh, assumed the office of the Indian Foreign Secretary in January this year.
As the Foreign Secretary, he first visited Dhaka in March this year.
The Indian Foreign Secretary is also likely to meet his Bangladesh counterpart Masud Bin Momen.
He met Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina during his last visit to Bangladesh.
There has been a gap of bilateral visit between the two countries over the last few months due to COVID-19 pandemic globally.
But two countries were connected virtually and held a number of important discussion on various issues of mutual interest.
India has recently described its relations with Bangladesh as “exceptionally close” but expressed displeasure over “mischievous” story pertaining to Bangladesh-India ties.
“We’re confident that both sides appreciate mutual sensitivity and mutual respect building further on the relationship,” said Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava at a virtual weekly media briefing in New Delhi recently.
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen termed Bangladesh-India relations a ‘blood relationship’ while Bangladesh-China relations an ‘economic tie’.
Referring to Indian External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar’s recent remarks, the MEA Spokesperson said India’s relationship with Bangladesh is a role model of good neighbourly relations in the region.
On August 14, Bangladesh’s Deputy High Commission in Kolkata condemned the disinformation campaign targeting Bangladesh by several web portals based in India’s northeastern region.
The Deputy High Commission also urged all concerned to disregard the false information peddled.
“It has recently come to our notice that several web portals based in India’s northeastern region have published totally false and baseless articles, and rumors, against the honorable prime minister, honorable ministers and advisers, military and security forces, and intelligence agencies of Bangladesh,” said a press release.
Most notably, the Deputy High Commission said the said portals have run distorted and photoshopped images of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan in an attempt to hurt the existing friendly ties between Bangladesh and India.
“We understand that these web portals, namely, and, are operated by or under the auspices of a discredited Indian journalist who has prior track record of disseminating false information about Bangladesh,” the media release mentioned.
In 2017, the said journalist published a “baseless and debunked” article suggesting a deadly coup and murder attempt against the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, said the Deputy High Commission.
“In addition, these portals have published spurious and provocative articles about Bangladesh’s military and security forces, lacking any sense of journalistic integrity,” it said. – UNB