Shillong, Apr 4: The Meghalaya government would soon convene a meeting with its Bangladeshi counterpart, with the assistance of New Delhi, to revive the traditional border haats in certain areas of the Indo-Bangla border.
''Border trade between Meghalaya and Bangladesh is vital for the area's socio-economic development,'' Minister in-charge of Border Trade Donkupar Massar told reporters here.
Mr Massar, who got elected from Nongskhen Assembly constituency, bordering Bangladesh, stressed the need for a better understanding with the Bangladesh government before the state government takes a decision to boost trade relations.
He said he was on the process to persuade those concerned to hold the meeting with Bangladeshi officials to boost border trade at the earliest. ''It is one of my top priorities now,'' he added.
On opening of border haats, he said, the exact place of their locations have to be looked into after discussion with the Bangladesh government.
'' The border haats were booming centers of business before creation of Bangladesh. But, they were abruptly stopped by the Centre and most villagers from the border areas now sell their perishable agricultural items here in the state capital under immense duress,'' he stated.
''I have visited the constituency and have a fair understanding of the plight of the poor villagers in the areas,'' he said.
He said another key aspect to developing the border area was to develop the road connectivity in the border areas. ''Infrastructure has to be developed before the state can move ahead with any proposal to boost trade between India and Bangladesh,'' the Minister said.