Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen on Friday said new gas connections will not be provided to households.
“The houses will have to use gas cylinder for cooking. Gas connections will be provided in industrial areas. Connections have already been given to some industrial units,” he said at a views exchange meeting with the journalists at the circuit house in the afternoon.
Referring to observance of ‘Mujib Borsho’ by the Foreign Ministry he said the ministry has taken up a two-year plan.
The process is on to name roads after Bangabandhu in various countries. Process is also going on to establish ‘Bangbandhu Chair’ at various universities, he added.
State Minister for Information and Communication Technology Zunaid Ahmed Palak on Friday said Bangladesh’s banking sector will be digitalised within the next five years.
“All financial institutions will be brought under Digital Interoperable and Digital Transaction,” he said, according to a PID handout.
He informed this while talking at Millennium’s ‘Tahkik’ audit system inauguration programme at a city hotel.
Ali Reza Iftekhar, chairman, Bangladesh Bankers Association, Niaz Ahmed, chairman, Millennium, AKM Nurul Fazal Bulbul, vice-chairman, Islamic Banks Consultative Forum (IBCF), and among others spoke at the programme.
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen on Friday said the introduction of digital services brought about qualitative changes in terms of providing services by reducing both time and cost.
"There is a need for cordiality between the service providers and receivers," he said adding that digital services ensure less hassle for all.
Dr Momen made the remarks while addressing a seminar as part of "Digital Bangladesh Fair 2020" at Bangabandhu International Convention Center in the city.
He said Bangladesh is giving much importance on economic diplomacy and public diplomacy in an effort to boost trade and investment, to diversify exports and create employment for Bangladeshi nationals abroad.
He said Bangladesh's achievements made so far will be projected across the world in the next two years by celebrating the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and 50th year of Bangladesh's independence.
Dr Momen said some 77 Bangladesh missions abroad will be engaged to introduce new and positive Bangladesh to the world.
The Foreign Minister said around 12.2 million Bangladeshis work abroad and most of them are not skilled enough.
He said the remittance inflow will increase significantly if Bangladesh can send skilled manpower abroad.
The Foreign Minister said the government introduced "Dutabash App" through which 34 types of services are available.
He said nobody will be able to stop Bangladesh's march if Bangladesh can properly utilise two resources - human and water.
The Foreign Minister said Sylhet is Bangladesh's first digital city where 52 types of digital services are available through dialing 333.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal on Friday said the government has nothing to do with the Dhaka city polls date though it coincides with Saraswati Puja.
“Arranging polls to two Dhaka city corporations on the day of Saraswati Puja is an issue of the Election Commission (EC). It’ll take decisions [on polls-related issues],” he told reporters at the 50-year anniversary of Sher-e-Bangla School and College in the capital’s Madhubagh area.
He said there is no fear of law and order deterioration surrounding the polls since the people and the law enforcement agencies are responsible.
“We’re working at the directive of the EC,” Minister Kamal said, declining to make further comments.
The EC on December 22 announced that the polls will be held on January 30, triggering criticism and protests from the Hindu community.
In Hinduism, Saraswati is the goddess of knowledge and learning, and so, the Puja is held at educational institutions.
But polling stations will be set up at different educational institutions in the city during the polls, which, many fear will hamper the Saraswati Puja celebrations.
A lawyer filed a writ petition with the High Court seeking deferment of the polls date but his plea was turned down on Jan 14. He has moved the Appellate Division against the order. His appeal will likely be heard by the Chamber Judge on Sunday.
You may also read:Appeal seeks deferment of DSCC, DNCC polls
Meanwhile, a group of Dhaka University (DU) students went on hunger strike on Thursday demanding deferment of the polls. Four of them fell sick on the second day of their fast unto death.
Jatiya Oikyafront convener Dr Kamal Hossain on Thursday said holding Dhaka city polls on the day of Saraswati Puja is an unjust act.
Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader on Friday said the government and the ruling party will not oppose if the Election Commission (EC) changes the date of elections to two Dhaka city corporations.
He also suggested the EC to sit with the Hindu Community leaders to resolve the problem over the voting date as the existing one coincides with Saraswati Puja.
“If the Election Commission thinks about changing the election date, they can do it as they’ve the jurisdiction. Awami League and the government have nothing to do in this regard. We’ve also no objection to it,” Quader said.
He came up with the remarks while speaking at a press briefing at Awami League President’s Dhanmondi office after a meeting of their party.
Quader, also the Road Transport and Bridges Minister, said their meeting discussed various issues, including the voting on the day of Saraswati Puja.
He refuted Oikyafront Convener Dr Kamal Hossain’s remark that the government did an unjust act by fixing the voting date on the day of Puja of the Hindu community members, saying the government has no role in this matter.
“The Election Commission is an independent institution, and they have the only jurisdiction to make the election schedule. The government has nothing to do in this regard. So, it’s not a justified remark that the government did an unjust act,” the minister said.
Stating that Saraswati Puja is the second largest religious festival of the Hindu community, he said the Commission should hold talks with leaders of the community to find out a decent, acceptable, logical and realistic solution.
Earlier on Thursday, Bangladesh Hindu-Bouddha-Christian Oikya Parishad general secretary advocate Rana Dasgupta condemned the fixing voting date on January 30 as it coincides with Saraswati Puja.
He called upon the EC to change the voting date.
Meanwhile, a group of Dhaka University students continued their movement demanding deferment of the polls to the two Dhaka city corporations slated for January 30.
The Supreme Court chamber judge is likely to hold a hearing on the appeal filed on Thursday challenging the High Court order that turned down a writ petition seeking deferment of the January-30 elections.