Dhaka, Jul 28 (UNB) - Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Saturday said initiatives have been taken to construct underground rail lines, elevated ring roads and waterways around the capital, aiming to ensure better transport services.
"We’ve already started a feasibility study to construct the rail lines," she said.
The Prime Minister said this at a programme after inaugurating the Badda U-loop (North U-loop) under Hatirjheel integrated development project.
She also said there is a plan to construct elevated ring roads around the capital city to ease communications.
Sheikh Hasina mentioned that the government will go for dredging the four rivers surrounding the capital so that the city dwellers could get a better commuting service through waterways. "We’ll dredge the rivers to restore their navigability."
She also said the small bridges over these rivers that are hindering the plying of water vessels will be removed through constructing new bridges which will not create obstacles. "We’re taking a plan for that, too."
Talking about the Hatirjheel project, the Prime Minister said the government will create a link canal with the project for linking it with rivers.
"If we excavate the canal, the water of the Hatijheel project will remain better. Another plan to that end is also underway," she said.
Hasina said the previous governments constructed box culverts over the canal and that decision was just a blunder. "As a result, the waterlogging in Dhaka is increasing day by day… constructing box culverts is not a solution."
She said if the Awami League is voted to power in the next election, it will demolish the box culverts to open the canals, not in Dhaka city, but also across the country.
"We’ll construct elevated roads over the canals, if needed. The canals will remain open…it’ll be helpful to remove the rainwater quickly," she said.
The Prime Minister said the government will renovate all the canals, beels, rivers, drains and ponds across the country. "We’ve already taken projects for this."
She said the aim of these projects is to make the country more environment-friendly one so that the people of the country could get an atmosphere to live healthier life.
Hasina mentioned that traffic jam is not a unique matter in big cities, and the government has taken numerous steps to reduce traffic congestions in capital Dhaka.
She reiterated that the government will introduce high speed or bullet trains from Dhaka to Chittagong, Sylhet, Rajshahi, Dinajpur, Barishal-Paira and Kolkata.
The Prime Minister said the government has been able to carry out marked development across the country as people cast their votes in favour of Awami League for two consecutive times.
"As we’re in power for two consecutive terms, we’ve been able to complete our development projects," she said.
Housing and Public Works Engineer Mosharraf Hossain, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan, Local MP AKM Rahmat Ullah, Army Chief General Aziz Ahmed and Hatirjheel Integrated Development Project Director Maj Gen Abu Sayeed Mohammad Masud also spoke.
Dhaka, Jul 27 (UNB) - Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Friday said the BNP-Jamaat clique will just destroy the country with their unbridled looting and corruption if they return to power as they did in the past.
"... they’ll just eat up the country through their looting if they get back to power…there’ll be no change in people's fate," she said.
The Prime Minister said this when leaders and activists of Swehhasebak League met her on the occasion of the founding anniversary of their organisation at her official residence Ganobhaban.
She said Khaleda Zia could not restrain herself from embezzling even orphans’ money. "How they’ll give anything to people returning to power…they won’t be able to give anything to people, they’ll just engage themselves in looting and corruption."
Sheikh Hasina, also the President of the ruling Awami League, mentioned that the BNP chief is now in jail for embezzlement of orphans’ money. “We didn’t put her in jail for political reason. Had we wanted to do that we could have done that in 2013, 2014 and 2013."
She said the people of the country have no trust and faith in the BNP-Jamaat clique. "This has been proved," she said.
Talking about the unabated corruption and money laundering during the BNP-Jamaat regime, the Prime Minister said these have been proved in the USA, too.
She also said Awami League brought back the confidence of people in government after its return to power through the 2008 election.
"If anyone does politics for personal gains that politics cannot give anything to the country, and that person takes everything for himself or herself…history never pardons such person," Hasina said.
The Prime Minister also said if the politics is just in the interest and welfare of people, then the politicians can give something to the country. "And we’re doing that."
She said the main aim of the Awami League is to build the fate of people, not its own. “I’m not there in politics to make own fortune… I just want one thing—to change the fate of people."
Hasina said the government has already ensured food security in the country and want to make it a poverty-free one. "We’re implementing programmes to that end."
She mentioned her government wants to make Bangladesh a poverty- and hunger-free country one as dreamt by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
AL general secretary Obaidul Kader, Swechhasebak League president Advocate Molla Mohammad Abu Kawsar and general secretary Pankaj Debnath also spoke on the occasion.
Dhaka, July 27 (UNB) – BNP on Friday alleged that the government has long been engaged in ‘extrajudicial killings’ in the name of anti-narcotic drive to hold another one-party lopsided general election.
“The motive behind the spate of crossfire incidents across the country is to terrorise people and opposition leaders and activists. Some leaders and activists of BNP and its associate bodies were killed in the motivated drive. No one of them were involved in drug peddling,” said party senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi.
Speaking at a press conference at the party’s Nayapaltan central office, he further said, “They (govt) have restored to crossfire as their only means of staying in power and holding a voter-less unilateral election.”
The BNP leader urged the government to immediately stop the inhuman, cruel and ill-motivated drive.
He alleged that though the government has been carrying out the anti-narcotic drive, it could not take any action against the ‘godfathers of drug like Teknaf MP Abdur Rahman Bodi’.
Rizvi said the ruling party leaders amassed huge wealth by widespread plundering, but the anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) is working as a ‘washing machine’ of the government’s corruption.
He said the ACC’s investigation into the allegations of corruption at Barapukuria coalmine is nothing, but eyewash.
The BNP leader alleged that lakhs of tonnes of coal did not disappear without the green signal of the ruling party quarter. “The head of the government can’t avoid the grand scam of disappearing coal,” he added.
Dhaka, July 25 (UNB) – BNP on Wednesday termed ‘inhuman and vindictive’ Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s recent comment that Khaleda Zia is ‘faking illness’ in jail to avoid appearance in court.
Speaking at a press conference at the party’s Nayapaltan central office, BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi also alleged that the Election Commission (EC) is ignoring BNP’s demand for deployment of army in three city polls only to manipulate the results in favour of the government.
“At the Awami League executive committee meeting, the Prime Minister said Khaleda Zia is faking her illness. Her comment is inhuman which exposes her extreme political vengeance,” he said.
The BNP leader said the jail authorities on Tuesday said it is not possible to produce her before the court as she is seriously ill.
“Government physicians and our leaders’ personal ones are also saying Khaleda Zia is sick. So, how does Sheikh Hasina mock with our leader’s illness,” he said.
Rizvi alleged that the Prime Minister is making such statements as she wants to put her political opponent Khaleda’s life ‘in danger without providing her treatment in jail’.
He also said the Prime Minister is making various comments at different programmes about the BNP chairperson to influence the trial of the cases filed against Khaleda.
The BNP leader renewed their party’s demand for immediate release of Khaleda and better treatment of her.
Rizvi alleged that Amar Desh acting editor Mahmudur Rahman was attacked in Kushtia at the behest of the government’s highest level. “The attack on Mahmudur Rahman is the exposure of head of the government’s cruel revenge.”
About the three city polls, he accused the ruling party leaders of indulging in widespread violation of the election code of conduct as the EC is not taking any action against them. “Expecting a fair and credible election under the current Commission is like crying in the wilderness.”
Dhaka, July 25 (UNB) - President Abdul Hamid on Wednesday stressed the need for making the best use of government property as there is no alternative to ensuring the optimum utilisation of limited resources for the country’s socio-economic development.
“There’s no alternative to optimum utilisation of limited resources for the socio-economic development of Bangladesh. So, this has to be ensured in every field,” he said while addressing the Deputy Commissioners’ Conference at Bangabhaban.
The President further said, “You know the successful implementation of the social safety programmes is an effective means to reduce poverty and establish social justice.”
Hamid said the government is continuously expanding the rate and volume of social safety allowances to create a sustainable safety net with social security. “This should be ensured that the real distressed people should get those facilities and be distributed properly.”
Mentioning that Bangladesh as an excellent example of secularism and communal harmony, the President said some fanatics, misguided people and terrorists are trying to thwart communal harmony and obstruct the country's economic development.
The Deputy Commissioners should play a leading role in creating mass awareness through a vigorous campaign against militancy and terrorist activities to eliminate those at any cost from the country.
Several projects, including some mega ones, are being implemented in various sectors, including agriculture, education, health, communication infrastructure, said the President adding that these projects are being implemented with public money.
“You’ll have to remain alert so that proper utilization of each and every Taka f people is ensured. In many cases, the projects, especially the infrastructure ones, are implemented without maintaining the desired quality. It causes losses to public money in addition to causing public sufferings,” the President told the DCs.
Mentioning that corruption as an impediment to society and socio-economic development, Hamid said, “People will have to be made aware from the grassroots level against corruption. You’ve to start this work from your office and family. The culture of transparency and accountability should be introduced at filed-level administration.”
Giving emphasis on prioritisation of people’s welfare instead of acquiring personal assets, the President said, “The welfare of people should be given the priority. Keep in mind that people provide the salaries, allowances and office expenses of you and mine. So, their interest (people) should be given maximum importance in all the activities of the government.”
Stressing the importance of ensuring hassle-free public services, the President said priority should be given to creative and innovative activities avoiding the conventional practices in performing duties.
He sought all-out cooperation from all in achieving the goals of sustainable development targets (SDGs) by 2030 and becoming a developed country by 2040.
The President also stressed the need for proper implementation of agriculture-friendly policy to attain self-sufficiency in food, standard education for all, people-oriented and sustainable land management, expansion of ICT, playing an active role in implementing the ongoing programme to end the sufferings from manmade disasters and crackdown on drug dealers and peddlers.