Dhaka, Nov 8 (UNB) – Bangladesh ODI skipper Mashrafe Bin Mortaza has expressed the hope that the philanthropic activities of Narail Express Foundation (NEF) will inspire all to come forward to ensure country’s overall betterment.
“I serve the country. But I prefer the overall development of Narail as I hail from there. I want to make it as an iconic organisation so that all people are inspired by its activities and come forward with the same initiatives in their localities,” said the inspirational iconic cricketer.
He said this after an agreement was signed between the NEF and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) at the IRRI Bangladesh Office (IBO) in the capital on Thursday.
Mashrafe signed the deal as the NEF chairman while Dr Humnath Bhandari as IRRI Representative of Bangladesh.
The deal is an initiative of cooperation to promote and disseminate five tonnes improved varieties and quality rice seeds among selected 1,000 farmers of three upazilas of Narail for augmenting the rice production in the country’s southwestern district.
The 35-year-old cricketer said many farmers of the country are losing interest in farming and instead migrating to cities due to low income.
Terming the deal ‘a great opportunity’ to work with farmers and agronomists, he said, “We want to connect people, providing them what we have, receiving donation irrespective of small or big.”
“We’ll make something good for farmers who work hard day and night to grow food for the country. Hope we can be inspired by them,” Mashrafe added.
BRRI Director General Dr Md Shahjahan Kabir and NEF Secretary Tarikul Islam Anik also spoke on the occasion.
The seed distribution will begin on November 12 among the low-income farmers from Narail Sadar in association with NEF partner IBO and its National Agricultural Research and Extension System (NARES).
The NEF has already selected the beneficiary farmers before the 2018-2019 Boro season in collaboration with the Department of Agricultural Extension (DAE) and IBO.
IBO also extended its hand to provide technical support through a Training of Trainers (ToT) while BRRI, BINA, ACI are facilitating the supply of seeds.
The NEF has established volunteer network in Narail district for fulfilling various socio-cultural agenda -- enhancing civil facilities, emphasising on specialised education system, introducing humane education at schools, eradicating unemployment, increasing cultural activities, providing various trainings on sports, making attractive tourist spots centring the Chitra River, transforming the district town into an ICT one and making an entertainment-friendly city.