Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader on Tuesday said all the spans on the Padma Bridge will be installed by July next.
He said this while responding to a tabled question from Awami League MP Didarul Alam in Parliament.
Of the total 41 spans, 20 have already been installed while the rest 21 will be placed by July, the minister said.
He also informed the House that the total physical progress of the Padma Bridge project is 76.5 percent as of December, 2019.
Quader said the physical progress of the main bridge is 85.5 percent while that of river training is 66 percent. “It’s expected that the Padma Bridge will open to traffic in June, 2021,” he added.
About the ongoing metro rail project, he said the progress on the Uttara-Motijheel route is 40.2 percent as of December last.
While replying to a question from AL MP Rubina Akhter, the minister said it is not possible to maintain the normal pace in printing licence cards currently due to the scarcity of un-personalised driving licence cards.
“Re-tendering process for meeting up scarcity of un-personalised cards has started. It’ll be possible to issue driving licence cards on time on completion of the re-tendering process,” he said.
Responding to another query, Quader informed the House about his ministry’s various measures, including controlling the speed of long route vehicles on highways, to ensure road safety.
He also spelled out his ministry’s various measures, including construction of elevated expressway on Inner Ring Road in the Eastern Bypass area, to reduce the city’s nagging traffic jam.
In reply to another question, the minister said mobile courts filed cases against 23,541 vehicles and realised Tk 4.54 crore in fine over traffic rule violations last year.
He also said the mobile courts also awarded sentences to 304 people and sent 198 vehicles to dumping stations during the period.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday reiterated her firm stance to use Bangladesh’s fossil fuel for its own economic development and the wellbeing of people.
“Whatever gas we’ve we’ll use that for the economic development of the country and wellbeing of people,” she said.
The Prime Minister said this when a delegation of Russian Gazprom met her at her Sangsad Bhaban office.
PM’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters after the meeting.
He said the Prime Minister recalled with gratitude the cooperation of the then Soviet union during and after Bangladesh’s Liberation war in 1971.
“Russia always supported us, they deployed their navy personnel to remove mines from Chittagong Port after our Liberation War to open the channel for vessel deploying, while sweeping the mines some Russian navy personnel also died,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina said Bangladesh is constructing its first nuclear power plant in Rooppur with Russian cooperation.
The Prime Minister conveyed her regards to Russian President Vladimir Putin through the Gazprom delegation members.
The Gazprom team members told the Prime Minister that the company signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Petrobangla on execution of the project involving exploration, development, production, transportation, refining, marketing of gas and byproducts including LNG as well as development of energy and power infrastructure and personnel.
Under the MoU, they said, Gazprom will drill three wells soon in Bhola Island to boost gas production in Bangladesh.
Terming the agreement as a "significant" one in the field of cooperation between the two friendly countries, the Gazoprom delegation members expressed their confidence that this will work smoothly.
The delegation members said Gazprom is keen to supply LNG in Bangladesh by 2024. "We're ready to extend cooperation through mutual understanding," one of the delegation members said.
PM's Energy Adviser Dr Towfique-e-Elahi Chowdhury, State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid Bipu, PM's Principal Secretary Dr Ahmad Kaikaus and Russian Ambassador in Dhaka Alexander I. Ignatov were present on the occasion.
Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury on Tuesday said the role of media is important in building public opinion on various issues related to the interest of the country.
The role of media is very important in forming public opinion as it is their one of the responsibilities to publish objective news upholding the Liberation War spirit, she said.
The Speaker was addressing a function marking the 4th founding day of Daily Sakaler Somoy at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in the city.
She urged the media to publish objective news rising above fear and favour.
Information Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud and former Railways Minister Md Mazibul Hoque and Vice Chancellor of Sher-e-Bangla Agriculture University Prof Dr Kamal Uddin Ahamed also spoke on the occasion.
A court in Gazipur on Tuesday placed four people on a three-day remand each over the alleged gang-rape of a teenage girl at a birthday party at Nayanpur of Sreepur upazila.
Those remanded are Sharif Hossain, 18, of Noisapur village of Hossainpur in Kishoreganj, Imran Hasan Sujon, 19, of Ujan Chandrapara village of Ishwarganj in Mymensingh, Sharif Uddin Molla, 20, of Nayanpur of Sreepur, and a 16-year-old boy from Trishal in Mymensingh.
Judge of the Judicial Magistrate Court-3 Md Iqbal Hossain passed the order for the adult accused while Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal Judge MLB Misbah Uddin placed the lone teenage accused on the remand.
The four invited the victim to a birthday party on January 15 where they offered her food laced with sedatives and later violated her in turns.
It came to the fore after a video clip went viral on Facebook where the suspects were seen saying, ‘Hello friends, we might be inside jail tomorrow. So, there’s a little chance to meet you again.’
The four were arrested on Friday and Saturday soon after the victim’s mother filed a case over the incident.
A court here on Tuesday framed charges against Golam Kibria Shamim alias GK Shamim and his seven bodyguards in an arms case filed with Gulshan Police Station.
Judge Md Rabiul Alam, Additional Metropolitan Sessions Judge's Court-3, passed the order after dismissing a petition filed by the accused seeking their acquittal.
The court also fixed February 26 for starting the formal trial in the case.
The seven body guards are—Md Delwar Hossain, Md Murad Hossain, Md Jahidul Islam, Md Shahidul Islam, Md Kamal Hossain, Md Samsad Hossain and Md Aminul Islam.
Lawyer Salauddin Howlader represented the state while advocate Shawkat Osman appeared on behalf of GK Shamim.
Earlier, sub-inspector Shekhar Chandra Mallik of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab-1) and also investigation officer of the case, submitted the chargesheet against them on October 27 last.
Rab filed three cases -– one under the Narcotics Control Act, another under the Money-laundering Prevention Act and the other under the Arms Act –- with Gulshan Police Station against Shamim who was arrested along with his seven body guards during a drive at his Niketan office on September 20.
Rab raided the house and office of Shamim, who amassed huge wealth as a contractor identifying himself as a Jubo League leader, in the Niketan area and arrested him with illegal firearms and a huge amount of money.
They seized Fixed Deposit Receipts (FDRs) worth Tk 165 crore, Tk 1.8 crore in cash and foreign currencies.
A foreign-made pistol, seven shotguns and a huge cache of bullets were also seized from the office of GKB & Company Pvt Limited owned by Shamim.
Shamim was known as an influential contractor of Sabujbagh, Basabo and Motijheel areas of the capital.