India, Bangladesh sign deals worth around Rs 39 cr

New Delhi and Dhaka strengthened their co-operation in the sectors of Education and Road development by signing two deals worth around Rs 38.7 crore, during the two-day official visit of Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale to the neighbouring nation.

The deals are on two projects – establishment of computer and language lab at 905 primary schools across the country and rehabilitation and improvement of roads in Rangpur City Corporation. Each of the projects cost is worth around Rs 19.35 crore.

Bangladesh  Economic Relations Division (ERD) Secretary Kazi Shofiqul Azam and Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Harsh Vardhan Shringla inked the deals on behalf of their respective governments at the State Guest House Padma, here.

Mr Gokhale, who arrived in Dhaka on Sunday, remained present during the signing ceremony, The Daily Star reported. According to an ERD official, the two projects will be implemented with the funds from the Indian government.

India is interested in providing grants to help familiarise students with various computer applications and enhance their reading habits. Students will get the opportunity to acquire important IT skills through the effective use of computers from their school lives, the official said.

He said under the computer and language lab project, at least four to five desktop computers and necessary furniture would be provided for each of 905 schools. Under the project of rehabilitation and improvement of roads in Rangpur city, a road network will be established to improve the city’s road communications. It would help reduce traffic jams in the city, he added.

On April 11 in 2013, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was inked between the two countries to implement different small projects in Bangladesh with the grant from Delhi.
The ERD official said India would approve three projects every year, to be implemented under grant from India and the projects will continue over the years, as per the MoU.
As per the condition of the MoU, only the local government bodies in Bangladesh could execute this type of project.

The official said eight projects, involving Rs 256.9 crore, under grant from the Indian government, were being implemented.


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