Expressing her displeasure at the talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bangladesh counterpart, Sheikh Hasina, on the Teesta, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Sunday said the river is the lifeline of north Bengal which can’t be taken away.
“There is very little water in Teesta river, it is our lifeline, the lifeline of north Bengal,” Ms. Banerjee said.
She said other trans-national rivers could be diverted to attend to Bangladesh’s water needs. “Your problem is water, not Teesta. I am willing to look at any alternative proposal. There are many other rivers in the area, we can use water from them,” she said.
No pact signed
On Saturday, Ms. Hasina said India’s support would help resolve all issues, including Teesta water sharing, expeditiously. Meanwhile, no pact on Teesta was signed between the two nations. Mr. Modi said: “I am very happy that the Chief Minister of West Bengal is my guest today. Her feeling for Bangladesh is as warm as my own. I assure you and the people of Bangladesh of our continuing efforts on Teesta. It’s only my government and your government that can and will find an early solution to Teesta water sharing issue.”
The Teesta runs through West Bengal and Bangladesh and if a treaty is signed it would allow for equal share of water. Bangladesh welcomed Mr. Modi’s commitment to an early solution on the Teesta.