New Delhi: India and Bangladesh on Monday virtually concluded the framework agreement of a 15-year treaty for sharing waters of Teesta and Feni rivers. Both countries have been trying to settle the issue for nearly two decades.

Water Resources secretaries of the two countries met here after a gap of five months to fine tune the agreement on water sharing which is likely to be signed during the proposed visit of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Dhaka.

Highly-placed sources in the government said here that while the water sharing issue has been virtually settled, some differences remain on the percentage of sharing of Teesta river water.

While Bangladesh wants the sharing to be on a 50:50 basis, India has proposed it to be on 45:55 ratio.

"This is more of a technicality which will be resolved," sources said.

The two sides had last discussed the framework agreement during the secretary-level talks of the Joint River Commission (JRC) on sharing water of common rivers between the two countries in Dhaka in January this year.

"While everything is ready, we fine-tuned the framework agreement," an official said.

During his day-long stay in Delhi, Bangladeshi Water Resources Secretary Sheikh Wahiduzzaman invited Water Resources Minister Salman Khurshid to visit Bangladesh for minister-level talks. The dates of the talks will be decided later.

The two neighbouring countries share 54 common rivers.


(Agencies)