16 February 2013
India and Bangladesh relations got a major boost following the signing of two agreements, an extradition treaty and a liberalised visa agreement between the two neighbouring countries. The two agreements were the outcome of the meeting between the home ministers of the two countries held in Dhaka in January 2013.
Signing of the two agreements has improved cooperation between the neighbours and brought back momentum in the relationship which was severely affected due to non'signing of the water'sharing agreement of Teesta River and the transit treaty during Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit to Bangladesh in September 2011.
The extradition treaty will facilitate deportation of wanted criminals hiding or residing in each other's countries. It will allow transfer of convicted and undertrial criminals. It will be applicable for people who are charged with crimes like murders, culpable homicide and other serious offences. People accused of offences of political nature do not fall within the ambit of this treaty. Offenders of small crimes awarded with less than one year of imprisonment also do not fall within the purview the treaty.
Reciprocity is the key for success of any extradition treaty. An extradition treaty enables one country to arrest or even try one individual persons for offences committed in the signatory country. India presently has extradition treaties with 28 nation states. The treaty has brought to light Bangladesh's ardent aspiration to be treated equally and accept issues that benefit its purpose. Despite India's consistent efforts in expressing its respect to Bangladesh's status as an equal sovereign country, many in Bangladesh feel that India behaves like a big brother and does not give the country its due.