Haroon Habib

DHAKA: The Bangladesh government has dismissed a recent claim by the Indian High Commissioner here that every year 25,000 Bangladeshis go to India and stay there.

“[The] Ministry would like to inform all concerned that the information available with the government does not correspond with the observation of the High Commissioner,” said a Foreign Ministry spokesperson. “Moreover, Bangladesh has not received any official communication from the government of India in this regard.”

The Ministry spokesman also said Bangladesh-India relations were “multi-faceted and deep-rooted.”

The ministry’s statement came after Indian High Commissioner Pinak Ranjan Chakravarty’s reported claim at a conference here to this effect.

“Those who enter unrecorded are many more in number,” said Mr. Chakravarty and added, “Our concern about illegal migration cannot be brushed aside.”

Mr. Chakravarty also said security was a major concern for his government in the recent times following the rise of terrorism in the region.

Clarification

The High Commission also issued a clarification and said Mr. Chakravarti’s remarks had been taken out of context and misreported, leading to a misunderstanding and unwarranted controversy.

Responding to these remarks, the High Commissioner mentioned that visa is a problem area because of two reasons: the large number (around 25,000) of Bangladeshi nationals who obtain visa but do not return, and the difficulties caused to genuine visa applicants by ‘touts and brokers’.

The High Commission also clarified that the Indian envoy was highlighting a well-known problem i.e. ‘touts and brokers’ .