Home Contact Us
Search :


Print Bookmark Email Facebook Subscribe
#2509, 8 March 2008
Gen. Moeen U Ahmed's Visit to India: Timely and Significant
Harun ur Rashid
Former Ambassador of Bangladesh to the UN
e-mail: harun@ecopac.com.au

The six-day visit of the Bangladesh Army Chief, Gen. Moeen U Ahmed to India from 25th February is significant in many ways, given the importance of bilateral relations between Bangladesh and India. The visit assumes added connotation at a time when a non-party caretaker government, headed by Dr. Fakruddin Ahmed, has been running the country since 12 January 2007. The caretaker government has no political ideology of its own and therefore, wants a trustworthy relationship with India, for mutual benefit.

India has accorded the visit the weight it deserves. The Indian media has also given importance to his visit, as all the major mainstream newspapers (The Hindu, The Statesman, Ananda Bazar Patrika and Assam Tribune) published news of his day-to-day programme.

All the talks between Gen. Moeen and India's political and military leaders have had one aim - to find specific ways to boost defence, transport and trade, among others, between the two neighbours.

The visit is timely because in the present day and age, the lines between external and internal threats have become blurred. Security problems do not arise from external factors alone. It is now generally accepted that security is multi-dimensional, and that in addition to military threats, the state's security can also be threatened by internal problems and terrorists acts.

It may be noted that during peace time, the purpose of deployment of armed forces has undergone a change from protecting people within the borders to addressing new security challenges. As a result the role of the armed forces has changed.

The armed forces are required to prevent, deter, and defend against the often elusive internal enemy. Some experts believe that the end purpose of military operations is not so much to seek victory as to integrate the former enemy into the community, by educating them to live normal lives.

Gen. Moeen had a hectic schedule in India. It is common protocol that when a top Army General or Admiral or Air Marshal visits another country, the distinguished visitor meets government leaders and in keeping with protocol, Gen. Moeen met India's key government leaders, including the President, Prime Minister, and External Affairs Minister.

Not only did Gen. Moeen meet his Indian counterpart, Gen. Deepak Kapoor, but he also held extensive meetings with India's Air and Navy Chiefs. Gen. Moeen reportedly said, "I propose to usher in a new era between the two Armies." At a spectacular function on 25 February, Gen. Kapoor presented the reins of four thoroughbreds to Gen. Moeen.

It has been reported that Gen. Moeen agreed for Bangladesh to finally honour the Indian Army soldiers who died in the Liberation war in 1971. The Eastern Corps Command is located in Fort William, Kolkata. That is why Gen. Moeen's visit to Kolkata was appropriate and important.

There is always an "India factor" in Bangladesh's foreign policy because the country is surrounded on the west, east, and north by India. Although its southern part opens into the Bay of Bengal, it still has to face a powerful Indian Navy on the seas.

Bangladesh-India relations are complex, sensitive, and multidimensional. Bilateral relations are the sum of the many ways individuals and institutions, public and private, manage relations between the two countries. There is no single model or form of bilateral relations because each nation sets its own priorities with neighbouring countries.

There are many bilateral issues pending between the two countries. They range from water sharing of common rivers, joint river management, agreement on storage or diversion of waters upstream of common rivers, demarcation of land border of 6.5kms in the east, exchange of enclaves in terms of the 1974 Mujib-Indira Boundary Agreement, and huge trade deficit against Bangladesh, to transit rights and sea boundary, including the disputed claims of Talpatty Island.

Given the above, both countries need to make sustained political, intellectual, bureaucratic, educational, cultural, and media efforts to understand each other better. Trust and confidence are the basis of a strong bilateral relationship.

In this context, analysts of both countries believe that Gen. Moeen's visit to India will pave the way for broader cooperation between the two countries for the benefit of the people on either side. Hopefully, it will open a new chapter of invigorated bilateral relationship on the basis of trust and confidence.

Print Bookmark Email Facebook Subscribe
IPCS Columnists
Af-Pak Diary
D Suba Chandran
Resetting Kabul-Islamabad Relations: Three Key Issues
Can Pakistan Reset its Relations with Afghanistan?
The New Afghanistan: Four Major Challenges for President Ghani
Big Picture
Prof Varun Sahni
Understanding Democracy and Diversity in J&K
When Xi Met Modi: Juxtaposing China and India
Pakistan’s Tactical Nuclear Weapons: The Inevitability of Instability

Dateline Colombo

Asanga Abeyagoonasekera.
Sri Lanka: Making a Case for Change
Connecting Sri Lanka: Train to Jaffna
Stronger Democratic Values for a Better Tomorrow
Dateline Islamabad
Salma Malik
Burying the Past: A New Beginning for Pakistan and Afghanistan
India-Pakistan: Working Boundaries and Lines of Uncontrolled Fire
Of Inquilab and the Inquilabis
Dateline Kabul
Mariam Safi
Af-Pak: A Fresh Start
Can Afghanistan Become a "Perfect Place?"
Afghanistan: Political Crises After the Presidential Run-off
Dhaka Discourse
Prof Delwar Hossain
Bangladesh in Global Forums: Diplomacy vs. Domestic Politics
Bangladesh: Diplomatic Manoeuvres at the UNGA
Abe’s Successful Visit to Dhaka: Two Political Challenges

Eagle Eye
Prof Chintamani Mahapatra
Has President Obama Turned Lame Duck?
Modi-Obama Summit: Criticism for Criticism’s Sake?
Changing Global Balance of Power: Obama’s Response
East Asia Compass
Dr Sandip Mishra
Abe-Xinping Summit Meet: A Thaw in China-Japan Relations?
South Korea's Foreign Policy: More Rhetoric, Less Content?
India in East Asia: Modi’s Three Summit Meets

Himalayan Frontier
Pramod Jaiswal
The Future of SAARC is Now
China in Nepal: Increasing Connectivity Via Railways
India-Nepal Hydroelectricity Deal: Making it Count
Prof Shankari Sundararaman
Modi in Myanmar: From ‘Look East’ to ‘Act East’
The ASEAN's Centrality in the Indo-Pacific Region
Myanmar's Political Transition: Challenges of the 2015 Election

Sushant Sareen
Islamic State: Prospects in Pakistan
Pakistan: The Futility of Internationalising Kashmir
Pakistan: Why is Army against Nawaz Sharif?
Maritime Matters
Vijay Sakhuja
India and Maritime Security: Do More
Indian Ocean and the IORA: Search and Rescue Operations
Maritime Terrorism: Karachi as a Staging Point

Middle Kingdom
Srikanth Kondapalli
China and Japan: Will the Twain Never Meet?
Narendra Modi and Xi Jinping: Building a Closer Developmental Partnership
Nuke Street
Amb Sheelkant Sharma
US-Russia and Global Nuclear Security: Under a Frosty Spell?
India's Nuclear Capable Cruise Missile: The Nirbhay Test
India-Australia Nuclear Agreement: Bespeaking of a New Age

Red Affairs
Bibhu Prasad
Naxal Violence: Challenges to Jharkhand Polls
Naxalites and the Might of a Fragile Revolution
Six Thousand Plus Killed: The Naxal Ideology of Violence
South Asian Dialectic
PR Chari
Defence Management in India: An Agenda for Parrikar
Pakistani Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan: Implications for Asian Security
Obama’s New Strategy towards the Islamic State: Implications for India

Spotlight West Asia
Amb Ranjit Gupta
Islamic State: The Efficacy of Counter-strategies
War against the Islamic State: Political and Military Responses from the Region
The Islamic State: No Country for the Old World Order
Strategic Space
Manpreet Sethi
Global Nuclear Disarmament: The Humanitarian Consequences Route
Nasr: Dangers of Pakistan's Short Range Ballistic Missile
Uranium and Nuclear Power: Three Indian Stories

The Strategist
Vice Admiral Vijay Shankar
Of Lawrence, Sykes-Picot and al-Baghdadi
Strategic Estrangement: An Odd Bedfellow to Economic Engagement
The Islamic State Caliphate: A Mirage of Resurrection
Voice from America
Amit Gupta
China's Global Ambition: Need to Emulate Germany
Mid-Term Elections: So What If the US Swings Hard Right?
Modi’s US Visit: So Much Promise, Such Little Outcome

Regional Economy
Amita Batra
18th SAARC Summit: An Economic Agenda
Regional Economic Architecture: Is India Ready?
Looking East
Wasbir Hussain
India-China: Securitising Water

OTHER REGULAR contributors
Gurmeet Kanwal
Harun ur Rashid
N Manoharan
Wasbir Hussain
Rana Banerji
N Manoharan

Ruhee Neog
Teshu Singh
Aparupa Bhattacherjee
Roomana Hukil
Aparupa Bhattacherjee


Browse by Publications

Issue Briefs 
Special Reports 
Research Papers 
Seminar Reports 
Conference Reports 

Browse by Region/Countries

East Asia 
South Asia 
Southeast Asia 
US & South Asia 

Browse by Issues

India & the world  
Naxalite Violence 
Suicide Terrorism 
Peace & Conflict Database 
Article by same Author
Bangladesh, China and Japan: Dhaka’s Delicate Balancing

India-Bangladesh: UNCLOS and the Sea Boundary Dispute

India-Bangladesh: Hope for a New Beginning

Is Bangladesh’s foreign policy becoming India and Russia-centric?

Bangladesh’s Foreign Secretary in New Delhi: Why Now?

Bangladesh Post Elections 2014: What Went Wrong?

Can the President Resolve the Political Crisis?

BCIM Economic Corridor: A Giant Step towards Integration

Bangladesh: Is Sheikh Hasina's Proposal to End the Political Crisis too Little?

Bangladesh-India Relations: Successes and Failures

Bangladesh: An Analysis of Pranab Mukherjee's Visit

Pranab Mukherjee’s visit to Dhaka: Towards Greater Integration?

Hasina's Visit: Nothing Concrete on Burning Issues

Sheikh Hasina’s visit to India

Congress (I) Victory and Relations with Bangladesh

Bangladesh-India Maritime Boundary

Awami League's Victory in Bangladesh and Relations with India

Saga of Indian Rice to Bangladesh

Is the US pursuing a Flawed Policy towards Pakistan?

Y! MyWeb
Print Bookmark Email Facebook Subscribe
Year 2014
 January  February  March  April  May  June  July  August  September  October  November  December
 2013  2012  2011  2010  2009  2008  2007  2006
 2005  2004  2003  2002  2001  2000  1999  1998

The Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies (IPCS) is the premier South Asian think tank which conducts independent research on and provides an in depth analysis of conventional and non-conventional issues related to national and South Asian security including nuclear issues, disarmament, non-proliferation, weapons of mass destruction, the war on terrorism, counter terrorism , strategies security sector reforms, and armed conflict and peace processes in the region.

For those in South Asia and elsewhere, the IPCS website provides a comprehensive analysis of the happenings within India with a special focus on Jammu and Kashmir and Naxalite Violence. Our research promotes greater understanding of India's foreign policy especially India-China relations, India's relations with SAARC countries and South East Asia.

Through close interaction with leading strategic thinkers, former members of the Indian Administrative Service, the Foreign Service and the three wings of the Armed Forces - the Indian Army, Indian Navy, and Indian Air Force, - the academic community as well as the media, the IPCS has contributed considerably to the strategic discourse in India.

Subscribe to Newswire | Site Map | IPCS Email
B 7/3 Lower Ground Floor, Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi 110029, INDIA.
Tel: 91-11-4100 1900, 4165 2556, 4165 2557, 4165 2558, 4165 2559 Fax: (91-11) 41652560
© Copyright 2014, Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies.
        Web Design by http://www.indiainternets.com