New Delhi: India is planning to sign new defense cooperation pact to bolster its military supplies and technology transfer to Bangladesh during defense Minister Manohar Parrikar’s visit to Dhaka later this month.
Also the plans to upgrade military training, joint exercises as well as closer cooperation in counter-terrorism will be discussed under the defense cooperation framework during the defense Minister’s visit, the Times Of India reported Last Week.
However, “It is likely to be inked when Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina visits India in December. The Parrikar’s visit comes in the wake of Bangladesh receiving first-ever submarines from China on Monday.
The two diesel-electric submarines, handed over to Bangladesh Navy chief Admiral Mohammad Nizamuddin Ahmed at the Dalian seaport of Liaoning province in China, indicates the extensive military ties being forged between Dhaka and Beijing.
In mid-October, Chinese president Xi Jinping signed 27 deals worth $25 billion with Bangladesh. India is also trying to counter China’s inroads into its neighbourhood, ranging from Sri Lanka, Maldives, Seychelles and Mauritius to Bangladesh, Myanmar and Nepal.
Apart from supplying air defence guns, radars and mine-protected vehicles to Sri Lanka, for instance, India is also constructing two naval offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) for the island nation now.
“Similarly, India can supply OPVs to Bangladesh through innovative financing mechanisms. The training of Bangladeshi personnel in Indian military establishments will also be increased under the overall capacity-building,” he said.
The sixth edition of the India-Bangladesh joint military exercise “Sampriti” is also currently underway at Tangail in Dhaka.
“With the focus being on counter-terrorism, the exercise will boost interoperability between the two armies.
Regular naval and air force exercises will also be on the agenda now,” an official at Indian MoD said.