Kalam calls for regional cooperationDiplomatic Correspondent
Former Indian president APJ Abdul Kalam on Thursday stressed on developing regional cooperation in the management of trans-boundary rivers.
Regional cooperation ‘is essential’ in water management and ‘nations should come together to work together to harness the water,’ he said replying to a question on the need for signing an agreement on sharing the water of the river Teesta at a press briefing at CIRDAP in Dhaka.
‘You see, we are wasting lots of water,’ said Kalam, who came here on a two-day visit at the invitation of CIRDAP for its 33rd foundation day lecture.
Bangladesh and India, which share 54 common rivers, failed to sign a deal on the sharing of Teesta water despite protracted negotiations for more then five decades.
An interim agreement on sharing of Teesta water could not be signed during Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Dhaka in September last year in the face of strong resistance from the West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee and a section of the Indian bureaucracy.
Kalam, also a leading scientist on man-made satellite and missile, said the region requires ‘creative leaders’ with ‘a vision’, ‘a passion’ to accomplish mission to find new ways for success, knowledge to manage ‘a success and failure’, ‘courage to take decisions’ and ‘nobility in management’ for sustainable development.
‘Every action’ of a leader ‘should be transparent’ and who ‘should work with integrity’, he said.
In his lecture, Kalam suggested forging regional cooperation beneficial to the people in general and the rural poor in particular, for tapping ‘core competences’ of member nations of CIRDAP.
He said building and maintaining connectivity of people, environment, economy, ideas and knowledge platforms with convergence of technology is also important to support rural development.
The former Indian president strongly suggested that Bangladesh and India should work together to replace plastic products with jute goods in which, he believes, both the countries have core competencies.
LGRD and cooperatives minister Syed Ashraful Islam, state minister Jahangir Kabir Nanak, secretary Mihir Kanti Majumder, outgoing CIRDAP director general Durga P. Paudyal and director general designate Cecep Effendi also spoke at the foundation day celebration of the 15-nation body for integrated rural development in Asia and the Pacific region.
Kalam came to Dhaka on Wednesday afternoon and left the capital on Thursday evening. He called on prime minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday at the Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban.
Before leaving Dhaka, he joined a views exchange meeting with children in a city hotel.
comments powered by Disqus