Dhaka politicians, media find Indian poll verdict encouragingMay 18th, 2009 - 12:14 pm ICT by IANS
Dhaka, May 18 (IANS) The government, the opposition and the media of Bangladesh have reacted positively to the poll verdict in India with a leading newspaper calling it “encouraging news” for the South Asian region.
The Daily Star newspaper took note of the rout of “communalistic” Bharatiya Janata Party and of the Left parties, particularly in West Bengal with which Bangladesh shares a long border.
In power in West Bengal for over three decades, the Left Front suffered from “incumbency fatigue”, the newspaper said in an editorial Monday.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia both called up Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh over the weekend to congratulate him.
Hasina, who scored a stunning victory in last December’s election, congratulated Singh on his Congress party’s “emphatic victory”.
She said the people of Bangladesh “always recall with gratitude the assistance and support of India and its people during Bangladesh’s Liberation War”.
Hasina said she expected to work closely with Singh in the coming days “to raise this excellent relationship to an even more meaningful level”.
Singh told Zia: “India wants to work hand in hand with all in improving bilateral and regional ties.”
The Daily Star said: “For India’s neighbours, especially for Bangladesh, the triumph of the Congress is surely encouraging news. With traditionally secular parties like the Awami League and the Pakistan Peoples Party in power in Dhaka and Islamabad (respectively), and now the Congress back for a second consecutive stint in office in Delhi, democracy and diplomacy should be getting a boost.”
It went on to say: “The Indian elections take (Congress president) Sonia Gandhi up a good many notches more where national appeal as a political leader is concerned. At the same time, they are also a triumph for her son (and Congress general secretary) Rahul, whose focussed and energetic campaigning throughout the country has brightened his chances of a national leadership role in the future.”
Bangladesh Today newspaper in an editorial said the poll outcome had “proved India’s unshakable commitment to democracy and secularism”.
“By rejecting the Hindu fundamentalist BJP for the second consecutive time through ballot the Indian voters have sent an unmistakable message to all that it still stands by its basic principles and values.”
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