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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2731

Pranab Mukherjee arrives in Dhaka amid violence

From R. Vasudevan—Reporting from New Delhi
New Delhi, 04 March (

Bangladesh on Sunday rolled out the red carpet for Indian President Pranab Mukherjee who arrived on a three-day state visit to boost bilateral ties amidst a general strike by fundamentalist Jammat-e-Islami to protest the conviction of its three top leaders for 1971 war crimes.

In an apparent fall out of the domestic political standoff over war crimes trial and consequent violence, opposition leader and BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia cancelled her meeting with Mukherjee that was scheduled for tomorrow, casting a shadow on the President's maiden foreign visit since taking over the highest constitutional post seven months ago.

BNP, which called a countrywide shutdown on Tuesday, the concluding day of Mukherjee's visit, cited no reason officially to call off Zia's meeting with the President. BNP was understood to have conveyed her inability to meet Mukherjee a couple of days ago. It may be noted, Khaleda had met Mukherjee in New Delhi in November last year on the concluding day of her nine-day visit to India.

As Mukherjee began his visit, at least 14 people, including three women and a policeman, were killed fresh violence rocked the first day of the strike called by Jamaat in four districts of Bogra, Joypurhat, Jhenaidah and Rajshahi districts.

Mukherjee, who arrived on an Air India One flight, was received by Bangladesh President Mohammad Zillur Rahman at the VVIP lounge of Hazrat Shahjalal International airport.. A galaxy of senior ministers of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's cabinet were also present.

- Asian Tribune -

Indian  President Pranab Mukherjee
diconary view
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