Amid allegations of harassment and unnecessary delay, Indian High Commissioner in Dhaka Pranay Verma on Tuesday said that work is underway to increase the capacity of visa centers.
He, however, said that more than 15 lakh Indian visas were issued to Bangladeshis last year and termed it a record in the world.
He made the comment while speaking as the chief guest at the second quarter lunch meeting of the Met-ropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) at Gulshan in the capital on Tuesday.
His comment came as businessmen often talk about visas that they are not getting Indian visa quickly and easily.
Verma, however, acknowledged that quick and easy visa is important for expanding trade between the two countries.
He said to ease the process they are not only increasing the capacity of the visa facilities more centres will be set up to receive visa applications.
“This is an ongoing process. We are sincerely trying,” he said.
Verma expressed hope that the trade between the two countries will increase in the future through the multidimensional communication system. Initiatives have been taken to make the land ports more effec-tive and modernized, he said.
Apart from this, he felt that steps should be taken to export Bangladeshi products to third countries using Kolkata and Delhi airports. He said the mutual investment of private sector entrepreneurs have also strengthened.
The connectivity initiatives aimed at linking Indian states, including those in India’s Northeast, with Bangladesh were intended to reinforce mutual interdependence between the two countries and leverage their shared history, geography, and socio-economic ties, he said.
Verma stated that given the proximity of Bangladesh to Northeastern States of India, Bangladesh is best placed to benefit from the economic opportunities present in the region.
The High Commissioner invited members of the MCCI to come forward to identify synergies that exist and leverage the geographical proximity and the framework of connectivity already in place to further enhance trade and economic engagement between India and Bangladesh.
MCCI president Saiful Islam said that special dual currency cards can be introduced through the State Bank of India to increase trade between the two countries.