Bangladesh and Pakistan

By Prof. Dr. Sajid Khakwani

Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma (Myanmar) to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south. The capital (and largest city) is Dhaka, which is the hub of all cultural, political and religious affairs. Together with the Indian state of West Bengal, it makes up the ethno-linguistic region of Bengal.

It is a founding member of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, the D-8 and BIMSTEC(Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi Sector Technical and Economic Cooperation), and a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the Non-Aligned Movement.

Bangladesh is a unitary state (governed as one single unit ) and parliamentary democracy. Direct elections in which all citizens, aged 18 or over, can vote are held every five years for the unicameral parliament. Currently the parliament has 345 members including 45 reserved seats for women, elected from single-member constituencies. The Prime Minister, as the head of government, forms the cabinet and runs the day-to-day affairs of state. While the Prime Minister is formally appointed by the President, he or she must be an MP who commands the confidence of the majority of parliament. The President is the head of state but mainly a ceremonial post elected by the parliament. The Constitution of Bangladesh was drafted in 1972 and has undergone 14 amendments. The highest judicial body is the Supreme Court. Judges are appointed by the President.

Bangladesh pursues a moderate foreign policy that places heavy reliance on multinational diplomacy, especially at the United Nations. In 1974 Bangladesh joined both the Commonwealth of Nations and the United Nations and has since been elected to serve two terms on the Security Council in 19781979 and 20002001. In the 1980s, Bangladesh played a lead role in founding the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) in order to expand relations with other South Asian states. Since the founding of SAARC 1985, a Bangladeshi has held the post of Secretary General on two occasions.

Bangladesh enjoys relatively warm ties with the People’s Republic of China which has, particularly in the past decade, increased economic cooperation with the South Asian nation. Between 2006 and 2007, trade between the two nations rose by 28.5% and there have been agreements to grant various Bangladeshi commodities tariff-free access to the Chinese market. Cooperation between the Military of Bangladesh and the People’s Liberation Army is also increasing, with joint military agreements signed and Bangladesh procuring Chinese arms which range from small arms to large naval surface combatants such as the Chinese Type 053H1 Missile Frigate.

A major source of tension between Bangladesh and India is the Farakka Dam. In 1975, India constructed a dam on the Ganges River 18 km from the Bangladeshi border. Bangladesh alleges that the dam diverts much needed water from Bangladesh and adds a man-made disaster to the country already plagued by natural disasters. The dam has had terrible ecological consequences. There are so many other sources of tension between the nations. India has voiced concerns about anti-Indian separatists and Islamic militants. The same two factors are bone of content in between Pakistan and India. India has ever disliked country for all the neighboring countries.

Bangladesh is among the countries most prone to natural floods, tornados and cyclones. Also, there is evidence that earthquakes pose a threat to the country. Evidence shows that tectonics have caused rivers to shift course suddenly and dramatically. It has been shown that rainy-season flooding in Bangladesh, on the worlds largest river delta, can push the underlying crust down by as much as 6 centimeters. Bangladesh is now widely recognized to be one of the countries most vulnerable to climate change. Natural hazards that come from increased rainfall, rising sea levels, and tropical cyclones are expected to increase as climate changes, each seriously affecting agriculture, water & food security, human health and shelter. It is believed that in the coming decades the rising sea level alone will create more than 20 million climate refugees. Bangladeshi water is contaminated with arsenic frequently because of the high arsenic contents in the soil.

Being members of OIC Pakistan & Bangladesh are two brother countries. The people of both of the countries are one nation and have very strong bonds of Muslim brother hood. Pakistan and Bangladesh are part of Sub-Continent; due to this territorial relativity both of the countries have almost same interests to meet and same challenges to face. Especially Pakistan & Bangladesh are not in the good books of India. In several times India has given tuff times to the both of the brother countries and these two countries have very good and ideal relations with China. So with the same interests and same challenges, same enemy and same friend are some of the so many common matters of friend ship between Pakistan and Bangladesh.

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