Bhutan's current envoy to India Maj Gen Vetsop Namgyel recounted an amusing personal anecdote from his meeting with Bangladesh's father of the nation, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
The meeting took place in 1974, when the envoy was serving as aide de camp to the then-King of Bhutan, Jigme Singye Wangchuck, on his visit to Bangladesh, reports WION.
"After establishing diplomatic relations, my king, the father of the present king, was invited for a state visit in winter of 1974 and I was the aide de camp and I had the opportunity of accompanying him," said Namgyel.
"My king had several meetings with Bangabandhu.. I had the opportunity to meet him. Being with my king, I had the opportunity to meet him..he had a very impressive personality," he said, adding what also "struck me (was) the love, affection, respect, and awe he was held".
The envoy lauded Bangabandhu's "illustrious daughter" and current Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, saying she has "fulfilled her father's vision" and that "Bangladesh has been doing very well under Sheikh Hasina."
Bangladesh has advanced from the status of least developed country (LDC) to developing country (DC) due to its rapid economic development. The Committee on Development Policy of the United Nations made the recommendation.
The envoy was speaking at the Bangladesh High commission, which had organised an event to commemorate the 7th March speech of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
The speech changed the course of history and was pivotal in galvanising the struggle against the Pakistani Army.
When the speech was being delivered, envoy Namgyel was doing his military officer training at Indian Military Academy (IMA) Dehradun, and was "very aware of what was happening in Bangladesh at that time".
He said, "when freedom struggle of Bangladesh took place, we used to follow it on newspapers, radio and one thing that struck me, after the independence of Bangladesh and successful liberation war...and listen to coverage on Doordarshan when Bangabandhu landed in Palam from Pakistan to Bangladesh".
"I remember to this day...what struck me, the excitement, the person who was covering the news...he was giving step by step account...describing his personality. The excitement and admiration, I can still remember to this day".
Bangladesh was the second country with which Bhutan established a diplomatic relationship after India. Bhutanese envoy said, "Bhutan and Bangladesh have very very close relations...we have very close economic and political relations".
In 2012, the third King of Bhutan Jigme Dorji Wangchuck was posthumously honoured with the "Bangladesh Liberation War Honour" by the Bangladeshi government for his support during the 1971 War of Liberation. Last year, both countries signed a Preferential trade agreement with an aim to increase economic engagement.