West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has offered export of up to 1,000 MW of electricity to Bangladesh during her meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
“We have surplus power in West Bengal and since Bangladesh needs power for her economic growth, we can give power to Bangladesh,” Mamata told journalists after meeting Sheikh Hasina with Indian PM Narendra Modi and President Pranab Mukherjee.
Bangladesh is receiving 500MW electricity from West Bengal and 100 MW from Tripura. Another 60 MW will be given from Tripura, according to Indian officials.
The Modi government has also promised another 500 MW to Bangladesh — so when Mamata made the offer, Modi asked her to put it in writing.
A West Bengal official said on Sunday that the offer has been formally made in a letter to the Centre after instructions from the chief minister.
Modi has promised to take forward Mamata’s offer for power export.
Mamata has also shown consideration for Bangladesh’s water requirement, especially during the lean season.
“I told Hasina-di that what you need is water, regardless of where it comes from. It can from some smaller rivers that flow into Bangladesh from West Bengal, rivers like Torsha and Mansai,” she told journalists.
But she insisted that it was ‘ genuinely difficult’ to share Teesta waters during lean season because of a large number of hydel projects upstream in Sikkim that has reduced water volume in the river.