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Bangladesh’s Naval chief arrives in India to fuel New Delhi’s Act East Policy

Admiral M Shaheen Iqbal, Chief of Naval Staff, Bangladesh Navy called on General MM Naravane, Chief of Army Staff (COAS), in New Delhi on Monday (Image courtesy: Twitter/@ADGPI)

Bangladesh's naval chief has begun a string of meetings, including a call on Indian Army chief General M M Naravane, at a time when New Delhi is looking at integrating Dhaka within the broader framework of its Act East Policy, with an eye on the Indo-Pacific region. 

Admiral Shaheen Iqbal's arrival follows visits of US Chief of Naval Operations Michael Gilday and UK Navy Chief Admiral Tony Radakin to the Indian capital this month.  

Iqbal also paid homage to the fallen heroes at the National War Memorial on Monday afternoon.

According to the Defence Ministry, in New Delhi, Admiral will interact with the Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Karambir Singh, in addition to the Chief of Defence Staff and other high ranking Indian government officials.

During the bilateral interactions, issues relating to joint cooperative efforts like Coordinated Patrol along International Maritime Boundary Line, bilateral exercise Bongosagar, conduct of naval training and reciprocal visits of delegations would also be discussed.

Shaheen is also scheduled to visit Mumbai, where he will meet with Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command and visit the Flagship of Western Naval Command.

On completion of the Mumbai visit, the Admiral would proceed to Defence Services Staff College, Wellington to witness training activities and interact with Commandant DSSC before returning home on October 29.
India and Bangladesh share bonds of history, language, culture and multitudes of other commonalities. The bilateral ties reflect an all-encompassing partnership based on sovereignty, equality, trust and understanding, that goes beyond strategic ties.

India and Bangladesh are also jointly celebrating the golden jubilee celebrations of victory in Bangladesh Liberation War and 1971 war this year.

A host of joint activities have been conducted which include reciprocal ship visits by both navies and participation in Republic Day Parade by Bangladesh Armed Forces contingent and gifting of war memorabilia.

During the last quarter of 2021, conduct of talks by Bangladesh war veterans at Naval War College and Indian Naval Academy and participation of Indian armed forces contingent and band in 'Victory Day' celebrations in Bangladesh are also planned.

Also Read: Victory flame lights up hearts of 1971 war heroes, families