India, Bangladesh members of same family: Prime Minister Narendra Modi

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday described India and Bangladesh as members of the same family while inaugurating with his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina a pipeline project and a railway project connecting the two countries. “Geographically we may be neighbours, but in our hearts we are members of the same family,” Modi said while addressing the event via video-conferencing from New Delhi. “We have shown the world, what can be achieved when neighbours work together,” he said, adding that there has been unprecedented progress in cooperation between the two sides in the last few years.

The India-Bangladesh Friendship Pipeline connecting Siliguri in India with Parbatipur in Bangladesh will transport petroleum products from Numaligarh Refinery in Assam. Of its 129-km length, five km is in India and the rest is in Bangladesh. At the same event, the ground-breaking ceremony of the Dhaka-Tongi-Jaydebpur railway project was also held. The two projects come a little over a week after both the Prime Ministers inaugurated two railway projects and an electricity project connecting the two countries on September 10.

Stating that the pipeline will further boost bilateral cooperation, Modi said that energy was the cornerstone of any country’s development. “The pipeline will help in the development of the northern Bangladesh. “Though it is being done with grant-financing from India, the project will be dedicated to the people and government of Bangladesh once completed.” Modi said the railway project will bring relief to road traffic in Bangladesh. Speaking from Dhaka, Hasina said that ever since she formed her government in Bangladesh in 2009, she has been working relentlessly to deepen ties with India.

She thanked Modi for the two new projects which she said will help in the development of Bangladesh. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan joined the video conference from Delhi and Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali from Dhaka.

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