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Cong MP questions Mamata's decision to opts out of PM's visit

Questioning Mamata Banerjee's decision to opt out of the Prime Minister's Bangladesh trip, a senior Congress MP on Monday said the West Bengal government should adopt a "balanced approach" in an effort to maintain good relations with the neighbouring country.
By HT Correspondent | PTI, New Delhi
UPDATED ON SEP 05, 2011 03:34 PM IST

Questioning Mamata Banerjee's decision to opt out of the Prime Minister's Bangladesh trip, a senior Congress MP on Monday said the West Bengal government should adopt a "balanced approach" in an effort to maintain good relations with the neighbouring country.

"The prime minister going does not mean everything is being finalised. In case there is any tension, it can be sorted out later. My personal view is that she should go," Lok Sabha MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said.

He was asked whether Banerjee should go with the Prime Minister.

Banerjee pulled out of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit to Dhaka reportedly upset with the Teesta River water sharing treaty. Banerjee and chief ministers of four other states bordering Bangladesh were scheduled to accompany Singh on his visit starting on Tuesday.

Though Banerjee did not give any reason for her decision to opt out, Chowdhury said, "My view is if there is any difference, then they should talk to the Government of India and take a balanced approach as we want and we should have good relations with our neighbour."

On the issue of water sharing, he said, "I think that the lower riparian state anywhere in the world is entitled to have their share of water."

"This is an internationally recognised convention. That is why inspite of our hostilities with many countries in and around India, we still are maintaining the same sharing of water," Chowdhury said.

"Just see... for example, Pakistan. See for example, China. We are vehemently opposing the construction of dam on the river Brahmaputra. Because if the dams are supposed to be constructed there, in future, it will hamper the flow of the Brahmaputra River," he said.

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