India must step up and take the lead with regard to facilitating cooperation, partnership, and most of all, trust
As Bangladesh looks ahead in its development journey in the wake of its 50 years of independence as a nation, one thing is abundantly clear: The growth of South Asia overall will play a significant role in how far every nation is able to go.
Indeed, for too long, the South Asia region has knocked at the doors of a development breakthrough, with most of the nations either lower middle-income countries who have graduated from the Least Developed Country (LDC) status or, just like Bangladesh, are aspiring to do so in the coming future.
However, now is the time to prioritize this regional growth, and to that end, while Bangladesh will remain a significant voice, India must step up and take the lead with regard to facilitating cooperation, partnership, and most of all, trust.
There is no denying that India is the most significant nation in the region, owing not only to its size, population, and economy, all of which dwarf every other nation in the region, but also its reach and political inuence on the global stage.
To that end, the next few decades are pivotal for a region that has, for myriad reasons, failed to reach its full potential, in particular due to the lack of cooperation amongst the nations themselves.
This must change, as the collective growth of the region will most certainly have a multiplier effect on every nation individually, and it is in the best interests of every country, be it Bangladesh, Nepal, or India to champion the growth and prosperity of the other.
For too long, South Asia has been held back, and together, we should be able to change that, and become a region that is the envy of other regions on the planet.