Metro rail is pride of Bangladesh: PM Hasina
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said through metro rail the Awami League government added another feather of pride to the crown of Bangladesh’s people. “We have added another feather of pride to the crown of Bangladesh’s people today. Another feather added to the crown of the development of Bangladesh,” she said. The prime minister said this at a programme marking the inauguration of the country’s first metro rail at Uttara sector-15 playground. She thanked the people of the country for giving the AL government the opportunity to serve them and the country, “Through casting votes in favour of boat you have given chance to Awami League to serve you. For that I am expressing my gratitude to all people and voters,” she said. She mentioned that with the inauguration of metro rail technologically Bangladesh people touched four milestones. Firstly, metro rail itself is a milestone, secondly the country enters into the era of electric train. “Thirdly, metro rail will be operated remotely using digital system. As a result this will be used to implement our pledge to establish the smart Bangladesh, and that means it added a new dimension,” she said. Fourthly, she said, Bangladesh enters into the era of speedy train. “The highest speed of this metro rail will be 110 kilometres per hour,” she added. Hasina said that in the election pledge AL declared to take various kinds of steps to make Dhaka city free from traffic congestion. “We have taken six metro rail lines which will be implemented by 2030. I think that after implementing all these metro rails skill and eligibility of the people of Bangladesh will be increased along their scopes for employment apart of contributing to the GDP.” She said that metro rail is environment friendly and it will not cause any harm to the environment. Read: PM opens country’s first ever metro rail service Pointing to increasing number of traffic congestion in the country, the PM said that the purchasing capacity of the people is increased, economical capability of the people has increased. “The number of personal vehicle using people has increased excessively. Because the economical capability of the people has increased,” she said. The premier said that the metro rail would help reduce the city's traffic jam significantly. She mentioned that special measures have been taken for the differently abled people including the persons with physical disabilities so they can easily travel by the metro rail. She also said that a separate compartment has been introduced for the women. Hasina said the freedom fighters can travel by the metro rail free of cost. She said that the government has taken measures to develop efficient work force to operate the metro rail shunning the dependency on foreigners. “Employment for around 12000 engineers would be made in the metro rail project,” she said.
Stop provoking war: PM makes call to world leaders from AL’s nat’l council
Awami League President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today made a call to world leaders not to provoke Ukraine-Russia war and end it immediately. “I will urge the world leaders, stop the Ukraine-Russia war, stop provoking them. We want peace,” she said. The ruling party chief was delivering her inaugural speech at the 22nd national council of the country’s oldest political party, aiming to elect new leadership. The theme of this year's council is “Development journey under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina with the determination to build a developed, prosperous, and smart Bangladesh of Bangabandhu’s dream”. Read: All religious faiths in Bangladesh enjoy their rights equally: PM Sheikh Hasina said that all countries are independent and all have the right to act independently. Saying that Bangladesh does not want war, she added that the country also does not want sanctions. “We do not want war, we do not want sanctions… war causes suffering for humanity,” she added. In this regard she recalled the experience during the Liberation War in 1971. “We know the adversity of war, we experienced that in 1971,” she said. Sheikh Hasina mentioned that women are affected the most during wars and children are also negatively impacted. “Their (women and children) human rights are violated, children are suffering from the cold winter… We do not want war,” she said. Read: Make sure people don’t suffer amid global crisis: PM Hasina urges local representatives The PM said that Bangladesh was just coming out from the adverse impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. “This war is just demolishing all our advancements,” she said.
All religious faiths in Bangladesh enjoy their rights equally: PM
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said the government has been working for the welfare of the people of all religious faiths living in the country. “We’ve been establishing Bangladesh as a non-communal country. Here all people have equal rights,” she said. The Prime Minister was exchanging Xmas greetings with the leaders of Christian community, joining a function virtually in Bangladesh Agriculture Research Council in the city’s Farmgate area from her office. She greeted all the people of the Christian community of the country on the occasion of the Christmas to be celebrated on Sunday. Read: Make sure people don’t suffer amid global crisis: PM Hasina urges local representatives Hasina said Bangladesh is not a country of the people from a single religious faith rather it is a land of the people of all religions. “We work for the wellbeing of all religious faiths,” she said. She said her government has always stood by all the people during any problem. “We believe that we’ve to work for all people in the country,” she said. In this context, she mentioned the measures taken by the Awami League government for the welfare of the transgender community and other disadvantaged communities. “We’ve secured their (Hijra people) rights in the Constitution,” she said, adding that the Islam as a religion has also ensured the rights of transgender people. She said the transgender people are being recognised as ‘third gender’ in each case such as jobs, in all forms or identity cards. “We’ve given their recognition,” she added. The PM said if she sees any particular community are lagging behind, she would bring them forward and would ensure education, jobs, livelihood and other facilities for them. “This is our Bangladesh of non-communal spirit. We want to build it,” she said. Read: 100 highways opened today are gifts for the nation in month of victory: PM Referring to the mosque-based education, she said the Awami League government has arranged the same education based on Hindu temples, churches and other places of worship. “I want all of you to live in this country with your own rights… Bangabandhu had made this country independent, and all people would enjoy its benefits,” said the PM.
Boost food production to avert any crisis: PM Hasina
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday reiterated her call to increase food production to save the country from any possible trouble amid the global economic recession due to the Covid-19 pandemic and Russia-Ukraine war. “We have to increase our production and preserve those so that our country must not plunge into any danger,” she said. The premier was speaking at the programme marking the 25th founding anniversary of the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Agricultural University (BSMRAU) and inauguration of a Technology Exhibition. The programme was held at the Begum Sufia Kamal Auditorium while the PM joined it virtually from her official residence Ganabhaban. Hasina said that the world is witnessing an economic recession as an impact of coronavirus and war-related sanctions and counter-sanctions by the US-led Western block and Russia. Read: PM Hasina wonders how leftists could join hands with BNP and Jamaat “As a result the prices of food items have soared beyond the purchasing capacity of all. Besides, prices of everything including power, fuel and transportation have been increased,” she said. Talking about the preservation capacity, she said that the government has set up a number of modern silos to stock rice. “Such godowns are urgently needed for food items being produced here,” she said. She also said that the government is focusing on the food processing industries in the 100 economic zones that are being set up in different parts of the country by the government. Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Huq, Education Minister Dipu Moni, Deputy Minister for Education Mohibul Hassan Chowdhoury and Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Agricultural University Vice-Chancellor Professor Dr. Md. Giashuddin Miah also spoke. A documentary on the university was also screened at the programme. Located at Salna, Gazipur, BSMRAU was established in 1998 as the country’s 13th state-run public university by an ordinance promulgated by the government of Bangladesh. The prime minister also put emphasis on research on food products to ensure food security in the country. She asked the authorities concerned along with involved persons to concentrate on producing more oil seeds in the country to reduce the dependency on others. She said that Bangladesh imports 98 percent of the edible oil it consumes. “But the mustard oil is the best for health. It can be upgraded through refining. We can do that,” she said. In this connection she said that there were various types of edible oil seeds in the country. “We must not be dependent on others. Why will we import from outside. We have to put more attention and do more research on edible oil production from various types of seeds. We have to take initiatives for that,” she said. The PM said that to save the arable lands of the country the government is setting up 100 economic zones across the country. She criticised those who during their regimes did not think about saving the arable lands. She said many arable lands were destroyed through indiscriminate urbanisation, establishment of mills and factories alongside construction of houses. “We do not want to lose our arable lands anymore. We have taken stern action regarding this,” she said. She said that the government has put emphasis on research on jute and jute made items to make it more diversified to earn foreign exchange. Read: Not that easy to overthrow AL govt through movement: PM “Jute can be a very important addition to our export basket, we have to put more attention to this item,” she said. The PM briefly described various steps of the government to improve the agricultural production and thanked the researchers for their utmost sincerity for inventing new varieties. Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Huq, Education Minister Dipu Moni, Deputy Minister for Education Mohibul Hassan Chowdhoury and Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Agricultural University Vice-Chancellor Professor Dr. Md. Giashuddin Miah also spoke. A documentary on the university was also screened at the programme. Located at Salna, Gazipur, BSMRAU was established in 1998 as the country’s 13th state-run public university by an ordinance promulgated by the government of Bangladesh.
President for ostracising the corrupt for combatting corruption
To combat corruption, President Abdul Hamid has called on everyone to ostracise the corrupt as their "dominance can now be seen everywhere – in towns, cities and villages." "There was a time when there was no social acceptance of bribe takers, usurers and the corrupt. But with the passage of time, that value has gradually eroded. Now there is a dominance of the corrupt everywhere in towns, cities and villages. No one cares about the source of the money anymore." He said this at a discussion held at the Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on the occasion of International Anti-Corruption Day on Friday, which is observed globally on December 9 to raise awareness of corruption and of the role of the Convention in combating and preventing it. Read: Increase quantity, quality of scouts: President Abdul Hamid The president also asked the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to take effective and bold steps to combat corruption. Earlier, ACC Chairman Mohammad Moinuddin Abdullah also called on everyone to identify the corrupt and ostracise them. He made the call while standing in a human chain formed in front of the ACC headquarters in the capital's Segunbagicha, marking International Anti-Corruption Day. International Anti-Corruption Day is being observed in eight divisions, 64 districts and 495 upazilas of the country. Read: President Hamid urges public representatives to work for the people International Anti-Corruption Day seeks to highlight the crucial link between anti-corruption and peace, security, and development. At its core is the notion that tackling this crime is the right and responsibility of everyone, and that only through cooperation and the involvement of every person and institution can we overcome the negative impact of this crime. States, government officials, civil servants, law enforcement officers, media representatives, the private sector, civil society, academia, the public and youth alike all have a role to play in this.
Don’t trust people who mislead, spread rumours: PM
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday said a vested quarter continues misleading people by spreading various rumours, but there is nothing for the people to be misguided. “Today some words are being propagated in many ways and it will continue for many days. Many people can be misled. I would like to say there is nothing to be misguided,” she said. The premier was addressing the graduation ceremony of National Defence Course-2022 and Armed Forces War Course-2022 at Sheikh Hasina Complex of Defence Services Command and Staff College (DSCSC) in Mirpur Cantonment. Hasina said it is unfortunate for Bangladesh that when the country advances to economic progress amid a peaceful environment, all people don’t like it. Talking about the world economic crisis induced by the war and economic sanctions, she said her government has still been able to keep Bangladesh stable. “A quarter continues misleading the people through saying many things and injecting fear among the people,” she said. Read: No problem with movement, but don’t go for violence: PM Hasina warns BNP The PM said her government has been able to raise the reserve of foreign currencies to $ 48 billion during the Covid-19 period from only $ 5 billion in 2009. Then the money from the reserve was spent to procure Covid-19 vaccines and testing kits, food and others, she added. She said her government’s goal is always to develop Bangladesh socio-economically. “We’ll continue to make socio-economic development of Bangladesh keeping its people free from terrorism, militancy, terrorism, drug and corruption. We don’t want war with anyone,” she added. Hasina said Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman framed a foreign policy where he said friendship with all, malice towards none. “We’ve friendly relations with every country. We’re marching forward. Because, we don’t want war, rather we want peace. We witnessed the consequences of the war. If there is any problem, we solve it through negotiation,” she continued. In this context, she mentioned solutions to maritime disputes with neighbours in a peaceful way and implementation of land boundary agreement through discussions. Read: ‘Why did Bangladesh not see development in 29 years?’ – PM Hasina asks The PM stressed the need for attaining economic independence. “Unless we can attain economic self-reliance, we won’t be able to uphold our independence and its spirit. So, we’ve been working to accomplish the goal," she said. She said today Bangladesh has got the status of a developing country thanks to the continuation of an uninterrupted democratic trend and her government’s special attention paid to socio-economic development. She put emphasis on upholding the recognition of a developing nation. The PM said the Armed Forces stand always beside the people in any disaster and trouble. They earned public trust and confidence inside the country. The armed forces and police are getting acclamation from the United Nations for playing their roles efficiently in the peacekeeping missions in foreign lands, she added. The PM extended her sincere thanks to the armed forces for upholding the image of the country. She also congratulated the fresh NDC and AFWC graduates on their successful completion of their respective courses. Later, the prime minister attended the 19th joint governing body meeting of National Defence College (NDC) and Defence Services Command and Staff College (DSCSC) as the president of the joint governing body of both institutions there.
PM Hasina foresees no crisis in consumer goods
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Friday assured the people that there won’t be any crisis of consumer goods in the country. “There will be no problem regarding consumer goods. We’ve started importing (goods) from Ukraine and Russia as well,” she said. The premier was addressing the 5th National Conference of Swadhinata Chikitsak Parishad (Swachip), a pro-Awami League professional body of physicians, in the city’s historic Suhrawardy Udyan. She said though there is a problem over payment with dollars due to sanctions (on Russia), the government is taking steps for an alternative (payment) system. Read: Bangladesh has changed a lot under Awami League govt: PM Hasina Hasina said Bangladesh still has enough reserves to meet up the import expenditures for five months. “Still we’ve the reserves to meet the import expenditures of five months, not three months,” she said. Coming down heavily on the critics of the government on the reserves issue, she said now all have become experts on the reserve and economy. She said the reserves increased to some US$ 48 billion during the Covid-19 restrictions, which was only above US$ 5 billion in 2009. She said it had to spend huge money from the reserves to procure Covid-19 vaccines, testing kits and other related materials to fight the pandemic. Now the government needs to import edible oil, wheat and other consumer goods at high prices following the war and economic sanctions, she added. The PM said they’ve been taking proper steps to ensure consumer goods and stood beside the people. “The reserves have declined not only in our country but also in many countries of the world,” she said. Read: Keep wheels of economy running amid global crisis: PM urges industrialists Hasina said now a rumour is being spread that there is no money in banks and the clients would not get back their deposits. She said many people keep money in houses withdrawing it from the banks due to this rumour. “To keep money in the houses creates scope for thieves, doesn’t it?....Now it's upto the money owners whether they would keep it in the banks or give it to the hands of the thieves,” she added. The premier reiterated her call to the people not to leave even an inch of land uncultivated to ensure Bangladesh won’t need to import food items at higher price amid the global crisis. She said all should grow crops and vegetables in whatever lands they have. “We’ll not only fulfill our local demand, we’ll also have to help many countries with food items,” she added. No peaceful transfer of power except 2001: PM The PM said the AL government handed over power in a very peaceful manner in 2001, which is the only instance of peaceful change in power in the history of Bangladesh. She said that illegal takeover of power started in the country after the assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in 1975. “Then, there was no change in power through peaceful manner in Bangladesh except in 2001,” she said. Hasina said Khaleda Zia had to step down on March 30, 1996 in face of the movement. “Then AL came into power through the election and we handed over the power peacefully in 2001. There is only one instance of peaceful transfer of power in the history of Bangladesh, which is only when AL was in power, she added. “We always want political stability and the continuation of democracy,” she said. The PM said AL formed the government, winning the 2008 election. “We’re in power for three consecutive terms. We can at least claim that Bangladesh has turned around and got the dignity of a developing country and it has been socio-economic uplift of the people of our country in the last 14 years,” she said. Focusing on her government’s success and steps over the country’s health sector, Hasina said her government took huge programmes for the healthcare development. She said AL government established the first medical university-BSMMU- during its 1996-2001 term. But the pro-BNP physicians obstructed the move at that time. Noting that her government set up a medical university also in Chattogram, Rajshahi and Sylhet, she said they’re establishing a medical university in every division in phases and medical colleges in every district. She also highlighted the introduction of digital health services including telemedicine services and health call centre, lactating maternity allowance, setting up community clinics, increasing the beds and manpower of the government hospitals including physicians, nurses and health workers. She said Bangladesh has attained massive development in terms of nutrition during her government. “Our health policy is a pro-people one. As a result, the maternal and child mortality rates have declined. Our successes in the health sector are now internationally recognised,” she said. Sheikh Hasina said her government took steps to ensure the healthcare services for the people from all tiers of the society. The PM unveiled the name plaque of the permanent central office of Swachip through a virtual platform. AL general secretary Obaidul Qauder, Swachip President Dr M Iqbal Arslan and its general secretary MA Aziz also spoke at the function. The last Swachip national conference was held in November 2015.
Work together to keep 1971 legacy alive: Indian envoy at 'Maitri Alumni Reunion'
Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Pranay K Verma has said it is important to work together to keep the legacy of 1971 alive, especially among the younger generations. "That's a very important task. We should not forget our history," he said while speaking as the chief guest at the "Maitri Alumni Reunion 2022" held at Old India House Thursday evening. The high commissioner said the relations between Bangladesh and India are rooted in the shared sacrifice that makes it so special. "We call it a relationship which is special, multifaceted and more than a strategic partnership. But I think it is truly a relationship of people," he said, adding that the people-to-people link is the most important element of bilateral relations.
Serve people with devotion, change their fate, PM tells newly appointed govt officials
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday asked a team of the newly appointed public servants to devote themselves for changing the life of the people. “All have to indulge with patriotism, you have to devote yourselves to change the fate of the people of the country,” she said. The Prime Minister said this while addressing the certificate-giving and closing ceremony of the 124th, 125th and 126th Law and Administration Training Courses at Bangladesh Civil Service Administration Academy in capital’s Shahbag area. She also directed them to identify themselves as “the servants of the public.” “I want that you will serve the people aiming to advance the country towards development,” she said. She reminded them that a country needs to concentrate on developing communication infrastructure, health, agriculture, education, power systems to build it as a developed and prosperous one alongside taking welfare programmes for the people. “I believe our new officers act accordingly,” she added. The Prime Minister also asked the new officials to prepare themselves for the transition in 2041 as the government has fixed the deadline to transform the country into a developed one by then. “Many things depend on the new officials of the administration and they will have to advance with appropriate plans,” she said. The new officials of the administration have the scope to change the fate of the commoners, she said adding that her government puts priority on developing the country from the grassroot level. Read: Do your best to boost food production to keep Bangladesh free from famine: PM Hasina urges youth Quoting from the speech delivered by Bangabandhu in 1972, the Prime Minister said that the government officials will have to dedicate themselves for delivering services and give priority on the national interest rising above all. She mentioned that patriotism and sense of self dignity of the government officials is very important. Hasina put emphasis on educating the people and creating employments for the youths and said that her government has opened the private sector. She mentioned that no nation can achieve desired development unless both male and female can advance together in a society. Pointing out Covid pandemic and the Ukraine-Russia war followed by sanctions and countersanctions, the Prime Minister renewed her call to increase production to ensure food and nutrition security in the country. She said that the government has been able to keep the wheels of the country’s economy running despite Covid-19 pandemic. Hasina, however, mentioned that people around the world including developed countries like the United States and other countries in Europe have been suffering due to the Ukraine war. She called upon the field level officials to play their role to encourage the rural people to increase food production to face the situation. She also stressed the need for establishing food processing industries in the country while setting up of new industrial units are planned. Hasina also underscored the need for maintaining cleanliness and planting saplings across the country to protect the environment. Referring to her government’s steps of gifting homes to homeless people, the PM reiterated that not a single family will remain homeless in Bangladesh and it was the dream of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. She reminded all that there were no Bangalees on the posts of secretary, general and major general rather only a colonel during the Pakistan period. She said now in independent Bangladesh everybody is getting that opportunity. Read:None can chew up forex reserve, it’s for the people: PM Hasina The PM asked the new officers to study the secret documents on Bangabandhu--a compilation of the Pakistani intelligence reports against the independence leader since 1948. She said that eleven volumes of the 14-volume set of the secret documents have already been published, adding there is no country in the world, which published secret documents of their leaders. “I think, if everyone reads it, it will be easy to know the history of Bangladesh and protect the generation from knowing distorted history alongside knowing the ways to make the country developed,” she said. She advised that the new officers should read the Ausamapta Atmajiboni (The Unfinished Memoirs), Karagarer Rojnamcha (The Prison Diaries), and Amar Dekha Naya Chin (The New China as I Saw), to know the true history of the Liberation War or how much struggle and sacrifice Bangabandhu endured for achieving the country's independence. The PM said that her government has been establishing 100 economic zones across the country to stop indiscriminate building of industries mainly to protect the arable land and generating huge employment. To this end, she asked the freshers to educate the masses about protecting the environment through forestation and tree plantation. The Prime Minister also distributed certificates and awards among 103 trainees of the 124th, 125th and 126th law and administration training courses. Earlier, she unveiled the plaque of Bangabandhu Study Centre there and visited it. She also unveiled the wrap of a compilation book containing her speeches at the Academy. A video documentary on Bangladesh Civil Service Administration Academy was also screened. State Minister for Public Administration Farhad Hossain, senior secretary of the Ministry KM Ali Azam and Bangladesh Civil Service Administration Academy Rector Mominur Rashid Amin also spoke at the programme.
BNP MPs ready to resign; Govt must go for credible election: Fakhrul
BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Saturday said MPs from his party are ready to resign from the current parliament as their main goal is to restore democracy by ousting the Awami League government. “We would like to straightly say that no election will be held in the country under Sheikh Hasina and without a caretaker government. Our only demand is the resignation of this regime.” He told a massive anti-government rally in Rangpur. The BNP leader said the government must dissolve the parliament. “Our MPs Harun, Rumeen and Zahid are ready to resign (from parliament) as per the directive of the party. The government must hand over power to a caretaker government which will form a new Election Commission and a fresh election will be held under it,” he said. He said a national government will be formed after a credible election to repair the state, economy and politics that have been destroyed by the current government. As part of the party’s planned rallies at division level, the Rangpur city unit BNP organised the programme on Rangpur Collector Eidgah ground. Thousands of leaders and activists of the BNP and its associate bodies joined the rally, defying a transport strike. An adequate number of police and other security officials have been deployed around the rally venue and at different points in the city to prevent any untoward incident. The organisers said the rally was meant to denounce the price hike of daily essentials and fuels, the death of five party men in previous police action in Bhola, Narayanganj, Munshiganj and Jashore, and to ensure the freedom of BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia.