Pranab Mukherjee arrives in Bangladesh

Dhaka: Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee today arrived in Dhaka on a two-day tour to join the 150th birth anniversary celebrations of poet Rabindranath Tagore. Flying in from Philippines, Mukherjee was received by Bangladeshi Foreign minister Dipu Moni, Information Minister Abul kalam Azad besides senior officials at the Hazrat Shgahjalal International Airport.

Mukherjee`s visit coincided with the tour of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who also arrived here today on a two-day trip. Mukherjee "is a very special friend of Bangladesh and the one who also occupy a very high position in (Indian) government and the (ruling Congress) party. We hope as always, the visit will enable us to review our bilateral issues in formal conversations", Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina`s Foreign Affairs advisor Gawher Rizvi told PTI.

Mukherjee is scheduled to meet Hasina and main opposition BNP chief Khaleda Zia. He will also hold talks with Moni and interact with a select group of journalists on the sidelines of the Tagore`s birth anniversary celebrations. His visit comes seven months after the setback in striking the much talked bout Teesta agreement between the two countries.

After Mukjerjee`s visit, Moni will make a two-day visit to India from Monday to jointly chair the first Joint Consultative Commission meeting, formed under the framework agreement on development and cooperation. Officials said a foolproof security arrangement meant for head of states was arranged for Mukherjee with deployment of the elite Special Security Force (SSF) that provides security to VVIPs.