Why Bangladesh feared Indian invasion after 1975 coup

By B.Z. Khasru

Bangladesh President Ziaur Rahman with U.S. President Jimmy Carter on the White House grounds in August 1980. On 26 November 1975, Zia told U.S envoy Irving G. Cheslaw that he feared an Indian military invasion in a few days and asked that America put pressure on India to stop this madness. India “should be made to realize that this is not 1971. This is 1975 and they will find a military force of sixty thousand and a population of seventy-five million that will present enormous problems for” for New Delhi.

When Gen. Ziaur Rahman became Bangladesh’s virtual ruler following several bloody military coups in 1975, he told the United States that India intended to invade its small neighbor to install a puppet regime.

Fearing a direct Indian intervention, the new regime instructed Nazrul Islam, acting foreign secretary of Bangladesh, to seek U.S. support to discourage New Delhi.

So intense was Zia’s fear of an Indian invasion that on 7 November 1975 he mad ..

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