By- Sohail Choudhury | Date- March 31, 2012
Bangladesh high commissioner to New Delhi (India), Ahmed Tariq Karim has publicly exposed his actions, which goes against the interest of Bangladesh, simply for the reason of his special affiliations with Indians. The Bangladeshi envoy, addressing apprehensions within has rejected the contention that the proposed Tipaimukh hydro-electricity project in Manipur would be harmful to Bangladesh and has expressed interest in benefiting from it by deriving power. Sharing India’s view, Bangladesh High Commissioner Tariq Ahmed Karim has said the project was not the cataclysm waiting to happen, as being projected by a section in Bangladesh opposed to the plant. Tipaimukh is not the cataclysm waiting to happen, that it is made out to be.
“It is a hydro-electric dam that will not divert any water (of Barak river) anywhere; it will not also withhold the flow of water,” he has said. “It (the project) will do what hydro-electric dam does: it will first fill up water to a certain level, then discharge it continuously at a certain force in order to comply with the logic and end goal of such projects generate electricity.”
“It will also help in mitigating floods,” Tariq Karim has written in an article Bangladesh-India Relation: My Vision of the way Forward‘ on the occasion of the Independence Day of Bangladesh. This article was put into special supplement published by the Bangladesh high commission in New Delhi, at the cost of a large sum of money. He expressed the hope that a joint study by the two sides will clear the air and “even convince our naysayers that it is in our interest to be a shareholder in this project and get some power from it”.
Following publication of the above mentioned article of the Bangladeshi envoy, several important political analysts in India have even expressed utter surprise seeing an ambassador of a sovereign nation like Bangladesh is echoing the voice of the opponent interest groups of the nation, at the cost of the wealth of the citizen of Bangladesh. They feel the opinion of the envoy not only goes against the interest of Bangladesh but also it could even be considered as a huge betrayal by the envoy with the nation.
There has been strong opposition to the Tipaimukh barrage by most of the people of Bangladesh as well as think-tanks(including environmentalists) and large political parties such as Bangladesh Nationalist Party, who are rightly alleging that the barrage would curtail availability of water downstream of Barak River which flows into north-eastern Bangladesh and affect its ecology.
Bangladesh high commissioner Ahmed Tariq Karim not only voiced in favor of India’s interest centering Tipaimukh Barrage but also suggested Dhaka (Bangladesh side) in having patience in getting the Tista water sharing agreement signed. He said, “As for Teesta, let me assert: it will happen. We need to have a little patience.”
Commenting on the statement of the Bangladeshi envoy in India, a senior journalist said, “We cannot even imagine in our wildest dream that our envoy could play the role of our nation’s enemy, simply because of his hidden connections with India. What Tariq Karim wrote are not only unacceptable but it is certainly a heinous and nefarious attempt to undermine the interest of Bangladesh. The dubious role of Tariq Karim now clearly exposes the way the current government in Bangladesh are gradually pushing the country towards the fate of Sikkim. Patriotic forces in Bangladesh should raise voice against this man and in course of time, sedition and treason charges should not only be brought against Ahmed Tariq Karim, but also against his associates within and outside the Bangladesh ministry of Foreign Affairs.