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PM Modi congratulates his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina on historic fourth consecutive term

Bangladesh Elections 2024: This election marks the second-lowest turnout since Bangladesh restored democracy in 1991, with the lowest recorded in the controversial February 1996 polls at 26.5%.

Edited By: Nitin Kumar @Niitz1 New Delhi Updated on: January 08, 2024 19:10 IST
Sheikh Hasina PM Modi
Image Source : AP/FILE PHOTO Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, right, and his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina wave to the waiting media.

In a diplomatic exchange, Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, extending his congratulations on her historic fourth consecutive term victory in the Parliamentary elections. PM Modi also commended the people of Bangladesh for the successful conduct of the elections.

"I also congratulate the people of Bangladesh for the successful conduct of elections. We are committed to further strengthening our enduring and people-centric partnership with Bangladesh," affirmed PM Modi in response to the election outcome. This emphasises the commitment to enhancing the bilateral relationship between India and Bangladesh.

A historic win amid election controversy

Sheikh Hasina clinched a record fourth consecutive term as her party, the Awami League, secured a commanding majority in the general elections. Despite sporadic violence and a boycott by the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and its allies, Hasina's party triumphed with 223 seats out of the 300-seat Parliament.

The election, conducted for 299 seats (with one seat to be contested later due to a candidate's death), witnessed the Jatiya Party securing 11 seats, while the Bangladesh Kallyan Party won in one constituency. Independent candidates emerged victorious in 62 seats, with Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal and the Workers Party of Bangladesh each securing one seat.

The 76-year-old Hasina, also the president of the Awami League, won the Gopalganj-3 constituency in a landslide victory, marking her eighth term as a Member of Parliament. With this win, Hasina is on track to become the longest-serving prime minister in Bangladesh since the country gained independence.

The general election, marked by a historically low turnout, saw 27.15% of voters cast their ballots by 3:00 pm, rising to an estimated 40% after polls closed at 4:00 pm. Hasina's victory secures her fifth overall term, maintaining her leadership since 2009, despite concerns and criticisms surrounding the election process.

Bangladesh PM Hasina affirms strong ties with India

Following her resounding victory, which secured a record fourth consecutive term in the general elections, Hasina expressed gratitude towards India, labeling it a "great friend" of Bangladesh. In a press statement, the 76-year-old leader acknowledged India's support during challenging times, including the events of 1971 and 1975, highlighting the shelter provided to her and her family during her six-year exile in India.

"We consider India as our next-door neighbour. We had many problems, but we resolved it bilaterally. So, I really appreciate that we have a wonderful relationship with India," stated Prime Minister Hasina. Emphasising her administration's commitment to fostering good relations with all countries, she highlighted the successful resolution of bilateral issues between India and Bangladesh.

As Hasina looks ahead to her next five years in office, she outlines economic progress as the central focus of her government. "I try to work for my people. With motherly affection, I look after my people who gave me this opportunity. Time and again, people have voted for me, and that is why I am here," she stated, expressing dedication to the welfare of the citizens.

Comparing herself to historical leaders like former Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and Sri Lanka's former Prime Minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike, Hasina humbly noted, "They are very great ladies. I am not. I am very simple, just a common person." The election, which took place with a low turnout, witnessed Hasina securing her fifth overall term, maintaining her position as Bangladesh's leader since 2009.

Also read | Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina elected for fifth term, declares Election Commission

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