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Own states in mind, Left tells Bangla FM: you must stop exporting terror

Own states in mind, Left tells Bangla FM: you must stop exporting terror

Author: Diptosh Majumdar
Publication: The Indian Express
Date: November 2, 2004
URL: http://www.indianexpress.com/full_story.php?content_id=58142

With its two state governments in Tripura and West Bengal having to contend with ''terror from across the border'', the Left leaders today told visiting Bangladesh Foreign Minister M Morshed Khan that his country would have ''to dismantle camps and not promote these separatist groups or anti-India elements at all''.

Of late, the Left has been demanding that the UPA government take up the issue of ''export of terror'' strongly with Bangladesh. This afternoon, when CPI and CPM leaders were informed that the Bangladesh Foreign Minister was here and wished to meet them, they used the opportunity to convey their message forcefully.

CPM's senior politburo member, Prakash Karat, who was part of the Left leaders whom Khan met at the CPI headquarters in Ajoy Bhavan this evening, said: ''We have told him that the Left was committed to maintaining good relations with Bangladesh, but there were a few major irritants that came in the way.''

Explained CPI general secretary, A B Bardhan: ''We told them they would have to ensure that no terrorist group was nurtured in the country.''

The Left's decision to convery their hard stand on the ''export of terror'' is not a surprise though. West Bengal CM Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee had raised the issue repeatedly with the previous NDA governement, especially former deputy PM L K Advani.

Bhattacharjee has also informed UPA's Home Minister Shivraj Patil about the border scenario and the terror situation in West Bengal during his trip to the Delhi last weekend.

The Left's problems have been compounded by Tripura CM Manik Sarkar joining forces with Bhattacharjee. The Tripura Left has to deal with the tribal extremists groups, especially outfits like All Tripura Tiger Force or National Liberation Front of Tripura. Even before this meeting, the Left had handed over a list of Tripura terrorists supposedly hiding across the border in Bangladesh.

According to some of the Left leaders, the Bangladesh minister read out a list of 25 suspected terrorists whom they have rounded up over the past few days. Left leaders said the Minister insisted that Paresh Barua of ULFA or Ajay Debbarma of ATTF had no permanenty camp in Bangladesh.

When asked for his comments, the Bangladesh Foreign Minister said the talks were held in ''an excellent'' atmosphere. He said that all problems between the countries could be sorted out in a spirit of cooperation.

In fact, the CPM Central Committee had discussed the Bangladesh issue in detail this weekend. Karat said: ''The ULFA, NDFB and the Tripura extremist outfits like the NLFT and ATTF are operating mainly from camps based in Bangladesh. Some of the groups are there in Myanmar also. The Bangladesh government has been consistently denying the existence of the camps and the activities of the leaders of these groups from the territory of Bangladesh.''

The CPM statement said: ''The Central Government must take up the matter with the Bangladesh government in a manner, which makes it aware that it cannot evade the issue of sanctuary for the terrorist groups any longer.''

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