By Mir Afroz Zaman
Dhaka: Bangladesh is under pressure not to move ahead on the project regarding river water management of Teesta river with the support of China, said the Chinese Ambassador to Bangladesh, Li Jiming.
Speaking at a seminar in Dhaka on the 20th Congress of the Chinese Communist Party (CPC), Ambassador Li Jiming said Bangladesh itself had proposed a pilot project for the management of the Teesta river. The process for examining the proposal and related aspects is still in the pipeline with China.
Ambassador Li Jiming said like Bangladesh, China also has a very long experience of managing rivers. It can share its experiences of managing rivers with Bangladesh usefully.
He said rivers like Padma and Meghna are too big but Tessta is neither too big, nor too small and best suited for a pilot project on river water management. The Bangladesh government formally proposed this project to China which was accepted by China and put through the whole process of assessment which is still going on.
Sharing the latest information about the status of the project, Ambassador Li Jiming said China would be willing to take up the project if requested by the government of Bangladesh. He said the major obstacle to the project does not lie with China.
Ambassador Li Jiming said there is some information which says that there may be hesitation on the Bangladesh side because of some outside pressure. He expressed surprise at the opposition saying that no dam is proposed to be built, no backwater will be created affecting the upper stream in the process.
Bangladesh might be more cautious because there might be some sensitivity and some geo-political reasons behind it, said the Ambassador. The project is still open and not concluded yet, said Li Jiming.