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India tracking Hasina issue

world Updated: Jul 17, 2007 03:50 IST
Nilova Roy Chaudhury

India is “closely monitoring internal developments” in Bangladesh, including the arrest of high-level political functionaries, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said on Monday.

Hours after the arrest of former Bangladesh Prime Minister and Awami League head Sheikh Hasina Wajed on charges of extortion, MEA spokesman Navtej Sarna said, “We are closely monitoring internal developments in Bangladesh, including arrest of high profile politicians.”

He underlined that “basic individual rights” should be fully respected in such high profile cases and there should be “no violation” of due legal processes.

“In all such cases, it must be ensured that there is no violation of due process as established by law and that individual and basic rights are fully respected,” Sarna said, adding that, “As a close and friendly neighbour, India would like to see a peaceful, stable and liberal Bangladesh.”

Denying suggestions of interfering in the internal affairs of another country, Sarna reiterated India’s advocacy of the need for early restoration of democracy in Bangladesh.

Sarna hoped people of that country would be able to participate in a “process leading to free, fair, credible and democratic” elections within the stated time frame provided by that country’s Election Commission.