Furor over Bangladesh

July 05 2014

It remains to be seen it our ‘saree diplomacy’ worked or didn’t with the Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, but there was a furor in the BJP. Sources reveal that Union Minister of State-Independent Charge of Sports and Youth Affairs, Sarbananda Sonowal was so cut up about relaxing the visa rules for people from Bangladesh that he met Modi and offered his resignation. It is worth mentioning that prior to joining the BJP, Sonowal was with the Asom Gana Parishad, and is considered to be an effective and proactive Assam youth leader. That is also the reason why the BJP may him the state party president as well. In fact, in his election speeches during election rallies in the north-east, Modi too was talking about sending Bangladesh immigrants back. And this is exactly what Sonowal mentioned to Modi, saying that the party will have no place in Assam after the visa rules for Bangladeshis were relaxed. The clever Modi instead told Sonowal that he will handle the Bangladesh matter himself and that he need not have any worries about it. The visa issue had come to the fore in the past as well and it was revealed that the home ministry and foreign ministry had serious differences about it. At such a time, a prominent cabinet minister advised Modi that just like in the UPA regime different matters within the foreign ministry were being taken care of by retired IFS officers who were appointed as advisors, this government should do the same. To this Modi said, “Because Sushma ji is a senior leader in our party and also our most veteran leader, we will not take one step without consulting her and not do anything that might hurt her feelings.”

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