Dhaka, Dec 1 : Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar today called on Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and discussed measures to strengthen military and security ties between the two countries. Parrikar, the first Indian defence minister to visit Bangladesh in the last 45 years, met Hasina, who holds the defence portfolio in the cabinet, for about 30 minutes.

Parrikar, who arrived here yesterday on a two-day visit leading an 11-member high-powered delegation, yesterday met President Abdul Hamid who assured India that it has “zero tolerance” policy against terrorism and sought expanded military ties. The President urged the Indian minister to send more military officials to Bangladesh for training to boost ties between the armed forces of the two countries.

The Defence Minister yesterday also met Hasina’s security adviser Major General (Retd) Tariq Ahmed and discussed bilateral military and security cooperation. Top Defence Ministry officials in New Delhi had said the focus of Parrikar’s trip was to deepen security ties and firm up a defence cooperation agreement that is likely to be signed when Hasina visits India next month.