2 women killed in separate road accidents in Dinajpur
Two women were killed in separate road accidents at Chirirbandar Upazila and Nawabganj Upazila of Dinajpur district on Friday. The deceased were identified as Mariam Begum, 50, wife of late Afal Uddin, resident of Khuniyadighi area of Chirirbandar Upazila, and Rashida Begum, 60, wife of late Shamshul Haque, resident of Daudpur area under Nawabganj Upazila. Nur Alam Siddique, Sub-inspector of Chirirbandar Police Station, said that a motorcycle hit Mariam Begum on Friday morning while she was sweeping dried leaves on the road for cooking fuel at Khuniyadighi area, leaving her critically injured. Later, locals rescued her and took her to Chirirbandar Upazila Health Complex where she succumbed to her injuries at noon. Bibhuti Bhushan Roy, Sub-inspector of Nawabganj Police Station, said that pedestrian Rashida Begum was going to Bhaduriya bazar on Friday noon when a picnic bus hit her, leaving her dead on the spot.
How to raise happy, confident, strong girls
Anita (9) hardly finds the scope to play after school, as her parents don’t allow her to leave their home alone on the pretext of security concerns. She can only visit relatives during holidays. Such restrictions are negatively impacting her mental and emotional health. Neli’s (15) parents always emphasize good grades at school. Participation in creative activities or hanging out with friends is not encouraged by her parents. Neli often feels confined, bored, and lonely. Besides studying, Neli wants to explore new places and take up creative hobbies. Rita (18) has self-esteem issues over her looks. Negative comments from relatives and neighbors about her appearance are only making it worse. After completing her master's degree, Zerin (25) wants to focus on her career. But her family wants her to stay home and carry out duties traditionally associated with women. Read More: Brave Women Freedom Fighters of Bangladesh’s 1971 Liberation War These scenarios are not uncommon for girls and women in Bangladesh. Parents often try to limit the liberty and potential of girls due to a range of issues, like insecurity, social prejudice, traditional mindset, etc. How can we address this situation? “Nothing in life is to be feared; it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more so that we may fear less,” according to Marie Curie, the first woman to win a Nobel Prize. In the twenty-first century, women are participating and taking on leadership roles in health, science, sports, technology, commerce, business, education, agriculture, politics, law enforcement etc. What is the secret to raising strong girls who can defeat fears and develop themselves as confident, happy, and independent persons? Set positive examples for your girls Parents should be cautious about their impact on their daughters. Every mother or father who wants to raise a strong daughter should first try to set good examples. When daughters discover great qualities like honesty, kindness, hard work, perseverance, confidence, etc in their parents, they try to emulate those qualities and develop their personalities accordingly. Read More: 10 Greatest Female Scientists of All Time Demonstrate the value of inner beauty In today’s world, many girls and women become prey to the marketing strategies of the beauty industry. Many girls tend to suffer from inferiority complexes due to their skin complexion, height, weight, and many more reasons. They waste time, effort, and money in the race to meet the social standards of beauty. Parents need to teach their daughters the value of inner beauty instead of focusing on physical beauty. Introducing daughters to successful women of substance can help them in this regard. Read More: Jute Sanitary Napkins: Bangladeshi scientist Farhana Sultana got awarded for eco-friendly innovation Living with disabilities According to WHO, about 16% of the total population on earth has some kind of disability. In Bangladesh, many parents fail to equip their children born with disabilities — physical or intellectual — the skills needed to live a fulfilling life. If a child has some kind of inability or limitations, like a learning disability or physical disability, the parents should try to accept it and encourage their daughter to overcome the barrier. Read More: OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Award: Bangladesh's Gawsia among top women climate scientists Not limiting her potential To raise a confident girl, parents should remove the words “that’s for boys” from their vocabulary. Women are exploring careers in diverse sectors that were previously associated with men. If a young girl is told that some professions and tasks are suited only for men, she gets a message of inequality. Such way of thinking can make her emotionally weak and destroy her potential. When a girl gets mental support for following her dreams, she will never give up. Parents need to encourage their daughters to explore their opportunities. Praising her success will also help her feel unique. Read More: “Icchedana”: A drama series on girls triumphing over gender stereotypes, social restrictions
DigitALL: Role of tech in promoting gender equality highlighted this Women’s Day
International Women’s Day is being observed in the country today (march 08, 2023), as elsewhere across the globe, with focus on gender equality and empowerment of women. This year’s theme, ‘DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality’, highlights the role of innovative technology in promoting gender equality and meeting the health and development needs of women and girls. International Women’s Day is observed every year on March 8 to put focus on women’s ongoing struggle for equality. Also Read: Top 10 International Scholarships for Women to Study Abroad Different organizations have chalked out elaborate programmes, including rallies, discussions and cultural events, to mark the day. Bangladesh's President Md Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina have issued separate messages on the occasion. Bangladesh Television, Bangladesh Betar and private television channels are airing special programmes while newspapers published supplements highlighting the significance of the day. Also Read: UN secretary-general says women’s right are under threat
Top 10 International Scholarships for Women to Study Abroad
International scholarship opportunities for women to pursue higher studies have increased in recent years, providing more options for women to access higher education and achieve their academic and professional goals. International scholarships cover various fields of study, including science, technology, engineering, mathematics, arts, humanities, and social sciences, enabling women to pursue their academic interests and advance their careers. In addition to covering tuition fees and other academic expenses, these scholarships also provide financial support for living expenses, travel, and other related costs. Let's take a look at some of the best scholarship opportunities for women from any country. 10 International Fully Funded Scholarships for Women To support and empower female scholars, there are a number of scholarships available to help women pursue their education. These scholarships range from full-tuition awards to smaller grants. Here are ten scholarships for women that can help you achieve your educational goals. 1. UNESCO Scholarship for Women The L'Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Awards, established in 1998, has honored 122 pioneering female scientists for their remarkable contributions to research. Five of these awardees have since been awarded the Nobel Prize. Every year, the L'Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science International Awards recognize five eminent female scientists – from Africa and the Arab States, Asia and the Pacific, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, and North America – for their research accomplishments, dedication to their field, and social influence. The For Women in Science Program has earned a reputation for excellence worldwide, providing backing to around 3,900 female scientists across 116 countries. Moreover, it has made visible the incredible achievements of these women and serves as a source of inspiration to young girls contemplating a career in science. Depending on the country and year, this fellowship's deadline may vary from late March to Early September. Check this link for more info: https://www.unesco.org/en/prizes/women-science Read More: Workplace stress affecting women in Bangladesh needs attention 2. British Council Women in STEM The British Council Women in STEM Scholarships program has been operating for the last three years and is partnered with 19 UK universities. The program seeks female applicants with a STEM background who require financial assistance and who wish to motivate other women to pursue STEM careers. These scholarships are available to women from the Americas, South Asia, East Asia, Western Balkans, Central Asia, Brazil, Egypt, Mexico, and Turkey. UNESCO reported that in 2019, women only made up 30% of the world's researchers, and only 30% of female students choose STEM-related fields in higher education. Despite this, the number of women in STEM has been gradually increasing, with the current figure standing at 35% (Anon, 2022). This scholarship program is focused on providing more opportunities for girls and women in the STEM fields. Scholarship applications are accepted in September-October. Check this link for more info: https://www.britishcouncil.org/study-work-abroad/in-uk/scholarship-women-stem Read More: Legendary Women in Bangladesh with Pioneering Contribution in Diverse Fields 3. CFA Women's Scholarship Now the number of Chartered Financial Analysts or CFA-certified professionals is increasing all over the world. The CFA Institute offers scholarships to women to pursue a career as a CFA. The scholarship is given to specifically encourage women working in the investment management sector. Under this scholarship program, the cost of signing up for the CFA Program has been waived, and the fee for taking the exam is now only $350. Usually, two application windows are offered for the scholarship from September to August. Check this link for more info: https://www.cfainstitute.org/en/programs/cfa/scholarships/womens Read More: 10 Greatest Female Scientists of All Time 4. Australia Awards Scholarship The Australian Federal Government's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade administers the Australia Awards, an international scholarship program designed to help students from other countries contribute to the economic and social development of their homeland. There are opportunities to study in different universities in Australia through scholarships in 7 departments, including blue economy, health, industry-commerce, and public policy-economy-governance. This scholarship is given for Masters only. Female students are especially encouraged to apply for this scholarship. Generally, an IELTS score of 6.5 is accepted, but women can apply with a score of 6.0. Usually, the application window remains open from March to the end of April. Check this link for more info: https://australiaawardsbangladesh.org/ Read More: Jute Sanitary Napkins: Bangladeshi scientist Farhana Sultana got awarded for eco-friendly innovation 5. Generation Google Scholarship (EMEA) The Generation Google Scholarship: for women in computer science was created to support students who are pursuing a degree in computer science and to help them thrive in technology and become influential figures in the field. Selected recipients will be granted 7,000 EUR (or its local equivalent) for the 2023-2024 academic year. This scholarship will be awarded based on the individual's dedication to diversity, equity, and inclusion, leadership qualities, and academic success. Any full-time female student can apply for this scholarship from the beginning of April, and the deadline is the end of April. Check this link for more info: https://buildyourfuture.withgoogle.com/scholarships/generation-google-scholarship-emea Read More: Dr Firdausi Qadri: Ramon Magsaysay 2021 Award Winner Bangladeshi Scientist
15 villagers wounded in clash over land in Kurigram
At least 15 villagers including three women were injured in a fight centring a land dispute in Sadar upazila of the district Monday, police said. The injured were identified as Yakub, 30, Ershad, 28, Hossain Ali, 65, Ismail, 37, Nur Nabi, 70, Abdul Jalil, 43, Abdul Khalil, 42, Shafiqul, 35, Jasim, 23, Sahida Begum, 60, Khoteja, 60, Hafsa, 26, Khadem Ali, 70, Meher Ali, 42 and Abu Sufian, 28. Three of them were admitted at Rangpur Medical College Hospital for better treatment while the rest were being treated at Kurigram General Hospital. Locals said there had long been a dispute over the ownership of a piece of land between two people—Khadem Ali and Nur Nabi in the Masterrerhat area. Read more: Six injured in clash between transport workers in the capital An altercation broke out when Nabi barred Khadem Ali from planting paddy saplings on the disputed land on Monday morning. At one stage of the altercation, supporters from the both sides engaged in a clash with lethal weapons and sticks leaving at least 15 people critically wounded. Khan Md Shahriar, officer-in-charge of Sadar police station, said the dispute between the groups over the land has been going on for one and a half decades. Though the groups are called to the police station to settle from time to time, one or other of the groups always remains missing, he said, adding that no one has so far lodged a complaint in connection with Monday's clash. Legal actions will be taken against the accused once complaints are placed, the OC added.
Ensuring young women's equal access to education central to gender equality: US
The US has said ensuring young women's equal access to education is central to gender equality. Women and girls have the right to learn, innovate, compete, and succeed in the global economy, it added. The US is working to make this vision a reality through its Global Women's Economic Security strategy. From January 21 to 22, US Senior Official to the Secretary of State in the Office of Global Women's Issues Kat Fotovat participated in the 10th Commencement Ceremony of the Asian University for Women (AUW) in Chattogram where she delivered remarks and met with students and faculty. Read More: FBCCI signs MoU with AUW to award scholarships to 30 students annually
Senior US official Fotovat to discuss women, peace, security issues in Bangladesh
Senior official to the US Secretary of State in the office of "Global Women's Issues" Kat Fotovat will begin her four-day Bangladesh visit on January 20. Fotovat will participate in the 10th Commencement Ceremony of the Asian University for Women (AUW) in Chattogram from January 21 to 22. She will deliver remarks and meet with students and faculties. On January 23, Fotovat will engage with members of government and civil society in Dhaka to discuss women, peace, and security issues in Bangladesh and the region, according to the office of the Spokesperson at the US Department of State. She will participate in an inauguration event for the Reducing Child Marriage – Skills Training for Advancing Resources project, a partnership between the US Embassy and the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC). This programme will provide vocational training for 14-18-year-old girls and young women – especially those most at risk of a child, early, and forced marriage – from the most climate-vulnerable localities. Since 2017, the Secretary's Office of Global Women's Issues (S/GWI) has supported scholarships for young women from conflict zones in Asia and the Middle East to attend university at AUW. With S/GWI support, AUW aims to produce the next generation of women leaders for Asia and the Middle East by providing a high-quality education to women of great potential who would otherwise have few opportunities. Programming includes opportunities for training in leadership, human rights, and organisational and financial management, as well as practical internship experiences. Recently, through the Gender Equity and Equality Action Fund (GEEA) Fund, S/GWI and the Department of State's Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor have provided additional resources for an AUW scholarship programme for 104 young Afghan women who otherwise would not be able to pursue higher education due to the Taliban's edicts closing secondary schools and universities to women. In support of the recently launched US Strategy on Global Women's Economic Security, the GEEA fund, managed by the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment Hub and implemented by USAID and the Department of State, advances economic security for women and girls by increasing their access to resources, services, and leadership opportunities and by addressing the barriers that limit their ability to participate fully in the economy. Read more: US Official: Free, fair elections “must include a level playing field for all” Fotovat leads a team of gender experts promoting gender equality efforts including support of women, peace, and security, countering violent extremism, promoting women's economic empowerment, and combating gender-based violence. She has over 20 years of experience advocating gender and human rights globally, specifically in conflict and post-conflict settings. Read more: 'Frequent visits' by US officials a good development: Foreign Minister
Faridpur woman earning Tk 1 lakh per month from vermicompost
Once Tania Parvin, and her four-member family, had to struggle to make ends meet. One day she saw a video on YouTube on how to make vermicompost at home, and her journey to economic emancipation started. With the help of the local Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE), she began her production with a three-ring slab in 2017 after receiving training. Gradually her production expanded. “Twelve to 15 tons of fertilizer is produced from my 36 units every month. I had only 12 units in the beginning. The retail price per kg is Tk 15 and the wholesale price is TK12,” she said. Read more: Jute sticks: A new source of income for Faridpur farmers She now earns Tk 100,000 per month by producing the organic fertilizer. Tania is now selling this fertilizer in various parts of the country. She said, the demand for this fertilizer is increasing by the day.
Export of jute products a boon for Satkhira women
Farida Parvin, a housewife in Sultanpur village under Sadar upazila of Satkhira district, now has her own source of income — making jute products for a private organisation involved in exporting those. Like Farida, a number of women in the village are now earning money after receiving training from ‘Rishilpi International Handicrafts Organisation’. Farida has two sons and a daughter and her husband Abdur Razzaque used to run a tea stall to cover the expenses of the five-member family. In 2016, Farida joined Rishilpi International Handicrafts Organisation after hearing about it from another woman and received training there. Now her monthly income is Tk 5000-5500. Also read: Diversified jute products fair witnesses huge footfall on closing day The raw materials are provided by the organisation and as per their demands, she makes jute bags, wall and floor mats. Tereja Mandal, another housewife of the village, said she is now able to bear the entire expenses of her family and the medical treatment of her husband, who is paralysed, by making jute products. “The organisation provides Tk 300-350 per jute bag to me and Tk 2500-3000 for each wall and floor mat,” she said. Around 7,000 women are now involved in making handicrafts for the organisation which has proved to be a boon for them. Read More: Jute growers paying for drought that resulted in discoloured fibre European countries are the main buyers of the jute products, and every year, jute products worth Tk 9-10 crore are exported from Satkhira. The jute products are being exported to Italy, Germany, France, Spain, Finland and Switzerland in Europe and to Australia as well. Sanjay Sarkar, product manager of Rishilpi International Handicrafts, said the organisation has been exporting jute products after giving training to 7,000 women of the district. Also read: Turkish businesses keen to invest in Bangladesh’s jute sector: Ambassador Turan “The demand for jute rope and jute cotton is huge in European countries,” he said. A woman worker can earn Tk 5000-6000 each month by making products for the organisation, he added. During the pandemic, the demand for jute products was poor but now the demand has gone up again, he said. Asish Kumar, jute inspector of Satkhira district, said, “People in both Bangladesh and abroad are interested in using jute products as it is environmentally friendly. The demand for jute bags is also high as the government imposed a ban on use of polythene bags.” Read More: Jute sticks: A new source of income for Faridpur farmers. Humayun Kabir, deputy commissioner of Satkhira district, said the jute products made by the women of Satkhira can fetch fame for the country as well as play an important role in the national economy.
Brave Women Freedom Fighters of Bangladesh’s 1971 Liberation War
The Liberation War of 1971 is a source of great pride for all Bangladeshis. It was a life-changing experience for the nation. Numerous Bengali men and women participated in the war directly and indirectly. However, the contributions of women are not widely discussed. Many dauntless women freedom fighters of Bangladesh fought against the Pakistan army in 1971 with weapons, medical help, food, shelter, and other ways. Today, we remember the known and unknown Bangladeshi women freedom fighters with the utmost respect. 3 Bir Protik Women Freedom Fighters of Bangladesh During the nine-month-long war against Pakistan (then West Pakistan), Bangladesh's military, paramilitary, and civilians formed Mukti Bahini which is a guerrilla resistance movement. Many brave Bangladeshi women joined Mukti Bahini. Here are three heroic women who worked directly with Mukti Bahini. Kakon Bibi Kakon Bibi was a Bangladeshi freedom fighter who also worked as a secret agent during the Liberation War of 1971. According to some sources her original name is Kaket Hennyata. She was born into a Khasi family from Nayrai Khasia Palli at Meghalaya in India. After her marriage to a Bangladeshi man, her name was changed to Noorjahan Begum. However, she was generally known as Kakon Bibi. While searching for her lost husband, she was captured and brutally tortured by Pakistani military. Later Kakon Bibi joined the Mukti Bahini, leaving her young daughter at home. She took part in around 20 front battles. She also worked as a war spy. In the honour of her gallant contribution to the Liberation War, the Government of Bangladesh gave her the Bir Protik title in 1996. The freedom fighter died in 2018. Read More: Saida Muna Tasneem requests British govt to recognise 1971 killing as genocide Dr. Sitara Begum Dr. Sitara Begum was born in Kishoreganj in 1946. She received her MBBS degree from Dhaka Medical College. She joined the Pakistan army in 1970 as a lieutenant in the medical corps. She, along with her brother Major Abu Taher Mohammad Haider was stationed in Comilla Cantonment. When the Bangladesh Liberation war started, Dr. Sitara Begum and her family moved to Meghalaya. A Mukti Bahini hospital was located inside India to operate during the war. Dr. Sitara then was appointed as the commanding officer of the hospital. After the independence of the country she returned Dhaka. For her invaluable support to freedom fighters during the Liberation War, Dr. Sitara Begum was also honoured with the Bir Protik title. Read More: 1971 and the Elderly Taramon Bibi Taramon Bibi was born in 1956 at Shankar Madhabpur village in Kurigram. She was the daughter of Abdus Sobhan and Kulsum Bewa. When Taramon joined Mukti Bahini, she was only 14 years old. Though a teenage girl at that time, Taramon fought bravely with weapons against the Pakistani army. She fought in Sector 11. For her courageous role in resisting the Pakistan military in direct battles, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman awarded her with the Bir Protik title in 1973. As her location was unknown at that time, the award was not handed over to her. A researcher from Mymensingh discovered Taramon Bibi in 1995. Bangladesh’s then Prime Minister Khaleda Zia finally awarded her on December 19, the same year. The brave hero died on December 1, 2018. Read More: Jamaat, which was behind killings of intellectuals in 1971, BNP's main associate: Info Minister Women Who Made Major Contribution to the Liberation War of Bangladesh Not all women got the scope to fight against the Pakistani army face-to-face with weapons in the front battles. Numerous Bengali women took care of the wounded freedom fighters and supported the fighters with food, shelter, and money. Women were also victims of sexual violence during the war. Geeta Kar Geeta Kar, one of the freedom fighters who fought against the Pakistani army in 1971, was born in Rajbari. Geeta was only 15 at the time of the war. The Pakistani army killed her father on May 5, 1971. That incident shocked her so much that she left home – leaving behind her mother and younger siblings. She started her journey to India. She walked nine days and finally reached India and enlisted her name in the Mukti Bahini. She joined the camp on July 2, 1971, and took training on guerrilla warfare. Like Geeta, more than 200 women in the training group had lost their family members and were eager to take revenge. Read More: 1971 loss a ‘military failure’, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Bilawal says after ex army chief called it ‘political failure’ Shirin Banu Mitil Shirin was a second-year student at Pabna Edward College in 1971. Getting inspired by Bangabandhu’s speech on March 7, Shirin joined the Liberation War to fight against the Pakistani army. She had to face numerous problems in direct combat. However, her determination helped her to find an alternative, and finally, she found that by disguising herself as a boy. Rounak Mohal Dilruba Begum Although Dilruba Begum did not take part directly in the battle, she played the role of a trainer and prepared six groups of young people for fighting. She inspired lots of people and encouraged them to join the Mukti Bahini to fight for the sake of the country. Read More: Imran Khan accuses Pak army of recreating 1971-like situation Ferdousi Priyabhashini The renowned Bangladeshi sculptor Ferdousi Priyabhashini was brutally abused by the Pakistani army and their collaborators in 1971. She did not take part in the Liberation War directly but made supreme sacrifices. In one interview, she said that after independence, she faced another ordeal and trauma when society refused to accept her as she was abused during the war. She felt isolated and that isolation led Priyabhashini to take refuge in sculpture. In 2010, Government of Bangladesh awarded Priyabhashini Independence Day Award. Rokeya Begum Rokeya Begum was pregnant when the war broke out. Her husband was a freedom fighter and he brought his fellow fighters to his home. The local razakars became angry at Rokeya for providing food to the freedom fighters. But Rokeya ignored that and decided to take food to the nearby island where the freedom fighters had camped in. Read More: 'Recognising the Bangladesh Genocide of 1971': ICSF welcomes US Congress initiative Bottom Line Bangladesh earned its independence through the sacrifice of millions of men and women. As we celebrate Victory Day, let’s honour the contribution of women who directly or indirectly participated in the Liberation war of 1971 and made supreme sacrifices.