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HomeDiplomacyTold cook to make food without onions — Hasina tells Piyush Goyal...

Told cook to make food without onions — Hasina tells Piyush Goyal in a dig at export ban

Sheikh Hasina's remarks came days after India banned export of onions to tame prices that have gone up due to crop damage and reduced harvest.

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New Delhi: Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina had a few punches reserved for Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal Friday as she taunted him for banning export of onion “suddenly without a prior notice”.

Hasina, who is on a four-day India visit, was speaking at an event organised under the aegis of the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM), Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) in New Delhi.

“I wish you had informed us before suddenly putting a halt in export of onions. I had to tell my cook I have no other option but to have my food without onions. I would request India to please inform us beforehand while taking such an action. After all, we are neighbours,” Hasina said in Hindi.

She added that there was a huge potential for two-way trade between New Delhi and Dhaka, even as it remains in India’s favour.

Her remarks came days after India had banned the export of onions to tame prices that inflated due to crop damage and reduced harvest of the vegetable following heavy rains. India is one of the top global exporters of onion. In 2018, the country sold 2.2 billion kg of onions for about $514.3 million, according to official statistics.

Also read: The politically disruptive onion crisis is back, and PM Modi has another fire to put out

‘Daily train between India and Bangladesh soon’

Inviting Indian companies to invest in Bangladesh’s upcoming special economic zones, Hasina said Dhaka would like to do more trade with New Delhi. She also said how Bangladesh is expecting a GDP growth rate of 8.2 per cent in this fiscal.

Talking about enhanced business ties, the Bangladesh further said this is the age of economic and not political diplomacy.

Goyal, in the meanwhile, assured Hasina that India will engage heavily in building seamless railway connectivity between both nations. He also said that New Delhi was looking at developing a corridor between India and Bangladesh to expand people-to-people connectivity.

“There should be end-to-end connectivity and that will be beneficial for both countries for people-to-people movement. We will soon have a daily train running between India and Bangladesh,” he added.

The Union minister further said bilateral ties between New Delhi and Dhaka have taken a “quantum leap” since 2014. He also added how the land boundary agreement between both nations, which was signed in 2015, had taken place in a peaceful manner.

Also read: Govt considers stock limit option to cut onion prices but Maharashtra polls an obstacle


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  1. abrupt export bans without notice is the main issue – indian modi govt is hamhanded and poor quality. Contracts to deliver are dishonoured and this is how the indians are seen as unreliable.
    Instead of export ban, why could not india allow onion imports to offset the price rise? More market oriented and it has the same effect as banning export.

  2. India’s crybaby socialist policies ensure that South Asia remains the least integrated region in the world. Instead of opening up its markets to its immediate neighborhood, to create a win win situation for all, India creates hurdles to prosperity.

  3. I once had a Maratha friend who, for a particular time of the year, would enjoy his non vegetarian food but cooked without onions and garlic.

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