Inside Bangladesh

Full text of AL President Sheikh Hasina's speech

Publish: 02:20 PM, 05 Jan, 2024


Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina this evening delivered a televised address ahead of the 12th Jatiya Sangsad election slated for January 7.

Following is the full text of her speech.  



20 Paush 1430

4 January 2024

Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim


Dear countrymen

  Assalamu Alaikum.

  Wishing you all a very happy New Year.

  Bangladesh Awami League is going to finish the current term with great success by forming the government for the fourth time in the post-1975 period after winning the 11th Jatiya Sangsad Election in 2018 with a huge margin of vote. The 12th Jatiya Sangsad Election will be held on January 7.

   I remember with deep respect the Greatest Bangalee of All Time, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Remembering the four national leaders and 30 lakh martyrs and 2 lakh oppressed mothers and sisters of the liberation war. I salute the freedom fighters.

   I recall with profound grief the victims of the heinous killing on August 15, 1975, my mother Bangmata Fazilatun Nesha Mujib, three brothers- freedom fighter captain Sheikh Kamal, freedom fighter lieutenant Sheikh Jamal and ten-year-old Sheikh Russell- Kamal and Jamal's newlywed wife Sultana Kamal and Rozi Jamal, my uncle freedom fighter Sheikh Abu Naser, Military Secretary to the President Brigadier Jamil and ASI Siddiqur Rahman of Police Intelligence and all other martyrs of that night.

  I pay deep respect to Maulana Abdul Hamid Khan Bhasani, founding president of Bangladesh Awami League, one of the oldest political parties of this subcontinent, general secretary Shamsul Haque and Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy, the champion of democracy.

  Remembering Awami League's 22 leaders and activists including Ivy Rahman, who were killed in the grenade attack on August 21, 2004. Remembering 21 thousand leaders and activists including former finance minister Shah AMS Kibria, Awami League leader Ahsanullah Master, Manjurul Imam and Momtaz Uddin who were brutally murdered after BNP-Jamaat came to power in 2001.

  I remember those who were killed in the BNP-Jamaat alliance's arson attacks and petrol bombings. Condolences to the injured and bereaved family members.

 Dear Countrymen,

  The father of the nation deployed all his might to rebuild the war-torn Bangladesh, standing on the destroyed infrastructure and economy as a result of Pakistan's 24-year exploitation and the scorched-earth policy of Pakistan in the 1971 liberation war. In just 3 years 7 months 3 days, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib achieved a prestigious status for Bangladesh at the global stage by running the government. In 1972, the per capita income of Bangladesh was $91. The father of the nation increased it to $277 in just 3 and a half years. From 1976 to 1991, the illegitimate governments of Bangladesh increased per capita income by only $5 in 16 long years. During the tenure of the Father of the Nation, the growth rate exceeded 9 percent. But, all the development and progress of Bangladesh had stopped after the killing of the father of the nation along with his family members on August 15 in 1975.

  I and my younger sister Sheikh Rehana were abroad when the father of the nation was killed.

That is why we survived. We were forced to live as refugees for long 6 years. In 1979, Ziaur Rahman staged an illegal election through yes/no voting. In that election, the counting of votes showed turnout of more than 100 percent votes. Ziaur Rahman was illegally the army chief on one side and the president on the other.

   The then military ruler Ziaur Rahman prevented us from coming to the country. I returned to the country in 1981 with the support of Bangladesh Awami League and the people. I returned to the country ignoring all threats from the illegally ruling government, Father of the Nation's murderers and plotters and the war criminals.

   I started the struggle to establish people's right to vote and food. That's why I came under attack again and again. I protested against the military regime for the democratic rights of the people and was arrested many times. I faced assassination attempts at least 19 times. But I didn't give up. Finally, I was able to return the right to vote to the people.

After long 21 years, Bangladesh Awami League formed government by winning the general election held on 12th June, 1996. It made an end to killings, coups and military rule.

 In the post-1975 period, illegitimate governments' isolation from people, looting and governing the state without any philosophy turned Bangladesh into an undignified state. Bangladesh was known to the outside world as a land of floods, storms, tides and beggars-poor-destitute people. At that time, the poverty rate in the country was about 55 percent.

 During the 1996-2001 tenure, we took several groundbreaking initiatives to alleviate poverty. We established peace in the hills by inking the hill tracts peace accord. Various allowances were introduced for the poor and marginal groups, special programs for them such as: Ashrayan Project, Ghore Fera, establishing of community clinics played a special role in alleviating poverty and improving the quality of life of marginal people.

  Adoption of farmer and agro-friendly policies made the country self-sufficient in food production rapidly. Besides, we adopted short, medium and long-term policies in various sectors; which put a far-reaching effect on the economy.

 Dear Countrymen,

    From June 23, 1996 to July 15, 2001 - 26 years after completing these 5 years, the Awami League government handed over power peacefully for the first time in the history of Bangladesh.

   BNP-Jamaat came back to power in 2001 through a conspiracy, just when the country was overcoming financial stagnation and embarking on the highway of socio-economic development. Under the umbrella of the state, a campaign to torture and repress Awami League leaders and workers began. As many as 21, 000 leader and workers were killed. Many ongoing development projects were shelved for political reasons alone. By opening the 'Hawa Bhavan', looting of state resources, corruption, terrorism, militancy and misrule continue freely.

  On August 21 in 2004, grenade attack was launched on Awami League's peace rally that killed 22 leaders and wounded more than 500 people. Bomb attacks in districts, clanging of weapons, session jam and uncertain life of students in educational institutions were the common phenomena during the BNP-Jamaat coalition government. Militancy, terrorism, arms smuggling, money laundering, embezzlement of bank money and the dual rule of Hawa Bhaban made public life miserable.

 At the end of the term, in 2006, through the BNP-Jamaat alliance was supposed to hold elections after handing over the power, the party resorted to various tricks to hold the power forever. With a view to rigging the election, a voter list was formulated including 01 crore 23 lakh fake voters as well as a submissive Election Commission was formed.

    Such of their activities led Bangladesh on the path of darkness. As a result, a state of emergency was imposed in the country. The military force seized power from behind the scene. This government of Iajuddin, Fakhruddin and Mainuddin snatched away the rights of the people and started running a steamroller on them. Design was made to break up the established political parties. I and many leaders of my party and other party leaders were imprisoned. An initiative was taken to hold elections after trying to form different parties.

     But conscious countrymen in unison resisted this plot. In the face of people's agitation, they were forced to hold the 9th parliamentary elections. However, they implemented some of the demands of the electoral reforms that the Awami League-led Grand Alliance presented - such as: preparation of voter lists with photographs, cancellation of the list of 1 crore 23 lakh fake voters, and use of transparent ballot boxes.

The Awami League-led Grand Alliance achieved a landslide victory in the general election held on December 29, 2008. Awami League alone won 233 seats. And BNP alone won only 30 seats. Partners of the both the alliances won the rest of the seats.

 Dear Countrymen,

  There is a huge gap between Bangladesh 15 years ago and today's Bangladesh. People's living standard has improved. Today, the people dream of a developed life. They dream of a beautiful life.

 I am presenting the picture what was the socio-economic condition of Bangladesh in the last year of the BNP-Jamaat coalition government in 2006; and what progress has been achieved during the Awami League government from 2009 to 2023:

  Growth rate is 7.25 percent, per capita income increased 5 times. The size of budget has increased 12 times. Annual development program increased 13 times. GDP size 12 times. Foreign exchange reserves 36 times. Export earnings 5 times. Annual remittance inflow 6 times. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) increased 5 times. Purchasing power of an agricultural labourer increased 3 times. Wages of workers increased 9 times.

  Poverty rate reduced from 41.51 percent to 18.7 percent. Extreme poverty rate reduced 5 times. Drinking water increased from 55 percent to 98.8 percent. Sanitary latrines increased from 43.28 percent to 97.32 percent. Infant mortality rate decreased from 84 to 21 in per thousand. Maternal mortality rate decreased from 360 to 156 in per lakh. The average life expectancy is 72.8 years.

Power generation capacity increased 8 times. Electricity consumption rate increased from 28 percent to 100 percent. Literacy rate increased to 76.8 percent. Technical education increased 22 times. Food grain production 4 times.

 We have built Padma Bridge with domestic funds. We launched metro rail in Dhaka, constructed elevated expressway and inaugurated subway operations. We set up the country's first nuclear power plant at Rooppur. The third terminal of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport has been inaugurated. We have constructed South Asia's first underground road - 'Bangabandhu Tunnel' in Chittagong. Dhaka-Cox's Bazar rail route has been established by constructing iconic railway station in Cox's Bazar. 'Bangabandhu Satellite-1' has been launched.

In any economic index, the economy of Bangladesh has excelled by increasing manifold in 2023 as compared to 2009. In 2009, the GDP was only $102 billion. In 2023, the GDP has crossed $ 450 billion.

 During the Awami League government, the total amount of bank loans increased more than 7 times. As of June 2009, there were bad loans of Taka 22,000 crore; Which is 10.5 percent of the total loan. At the end of September 2023, there were bad loans of Taka 1 lakh 55 thousand crore; Which is 9.9 percent of the total disbursed loans.

  Those who criticize - it is unfortunate that they do not present the correct information to the nation. It is their character to mislead people with false information against the country. It seems that they get frustrated when they see the socio-economic development of the people of Bangladesh.

Dear Countrymen,

  On December 27, I presented the election manifesto of Bangladesh Awami League before you. I explained in detail in what condition we found the country, and how much we have been able to implement to improve your living standard.

  By sustaining the development trend of the country, so that you can have a better life, we have explained what we will do in the next 5 years if we are elected by your vote.

Today I have come to you to seek your vote for "boat" symbol. We want another chance to make this development sustainable, to improve your standard of life, to build our beloved motherland Bangladesh a hunger-poverty-free developed Smart Sonar Bangla.

 The aim of the Awami League government is to improve your living standard by ensuring food security by increasing production, reducing poverty, providing permanent homes and livelihoods for landless and homeless families, educating our children and youth in time-befitting education system, improving health services further, creating massive employment opportunities through domestic and foreign investment in 100 economic zones, continuing providing technical and computer training in every upazila as we have created the opportunity, finding new workplaces in different countries of the world for exporting skilled manpower, ensuring civic amenities for rural people, improve roads and highways and taking measures to make sustainable electricity, drinking water and sanitation facilities we have taken.

If we are elected by your valuable votes and can form the government once again, we will get the opportunity to improve your living standard by implementing the programmes we have taken.

The aims of the Awami League government are to create new employment opportunities in the country, to ensure civic amenities for the rural people, to develop roads and highways, and to improve living standard of all people by sustaining the measures taken for electricity, fresh water and sanitation.

If we are elected with your valuable votes and form the government again, we will get the opportunity to improve your living standard by implementing the programmes that we have taken.

By excavating rivers, canals, ponds and reservoirs, conducting extensive plantation programme, creating afforestation and building green belts in the country’s coastal areas, we will protect the people of the country from the adverse impacts of climate change - cyclones, tidal surge, floods and riverbank erosion.

Extensive development of communication infrastructure will be ensured by enhancing road, rail, waterway and airways and their services.

Steps will continue for mechanising agriculture sector, producing more crops, food preservation, processing of food and agricultural products, meeting local demand and taking appropriate initiatives to export goods.

New markets are being explored to expand export trade and the production of necessary products will be increased. To this end, works will continue to produce digital devices, leather and leather products, jute and jute products, and build agriculture and food processing, pharmaceuticals and cottage industries, small, medium and heavy industrial production units, shipbuilding and ship recycling industries, and factories. Massive investment and employment opportunities will be created.

In this regard, the works of building institutions and laboratories for agricultural products, health science, technological science, nuclear research, aerospace and aviation research, marine research and climate change research should be accomplished.

Dear Countrymen,

In continuation of the successes we achieved in governing the state imbued with the ideals and spirit of the liberation war mentioned in the AL’s election manifestoes in 2008, 2014 and 2018, we have declared the election manifesto for building a Smart Sonar Bangla from 2024. Among the issues of socioeconomic development of the people mentioned in this election manifesto, I am presenting before you some of the issues that we have given special priority:

* To protect and practice democratic system at all levels.

* To continue all-out efforts to keep prices of commodities within everyone's purchasing capacity.

* To ensure employability education and employment for youth.

*  To build smart Bangladesh based on modern technology.

* To mechanise the integrated agricultural system and take initiatives to preserve products aiming to boost production.

* To boost agricultural products and food processing industries.

*  To create employment opportunities by developing infrastructure and setting up industrial units up to village level.

* To enhance the proficiency and capacity in bank, insurance and financial sectors.

*  To make healthcare services available for low-income people.

* To ensure individual and social security by including all in the universal pension system.

*  To enhance the capacity of law enforcing agencies in using modern technology and ensure their accountability.

*  To remove communalism and all forms of terrorism and militancy.

In three consecutive periods from 2009 to 2023, the Awami League government has advanced the nation towards the path of building a democratic country based on equality and justice through public welfare-oriented and integrated planning, maintaining democratic trend and stability. Meanwhile, a sustainable foundation for reconstructing a developed Bangladesh has been established. Bangladesh has achieved the status of a developing country. Bangladesh's journey as a developing country will begin from 2026. The opportunity, to be got for building Bangladesh as developing country, will be utilised and the existing challenges can be dealt with only if the Awami League remains in power.

By implementing Bangladesh as a developing country, we have formulated plans to build a developed and prosperous Smart Bangladesh by 2041.

A large number of potential young generation will be the main architects in reconstructing Smart Bangladesh. The power of youth means the advancement of Bangladesh.

Dear Countrymen,

The 12th national parliamentary elections will be held on January 7. A request to all the political parties and institutions that believe in democracy and the rule of law - do not allow and instigate any abnormal ideas that disrupt the constitutional process.

We expect a free, fair and impartial election. This is the first time in Bangladesh that the Election Commission has been formed as per law. The Election Commission has been given financial freedom. Administration and law enforcing agencies have been brought under the Election Commission. The Election Commission is conducting the polls absolute independently.

 Our government is providing all kinds of support to the Election Commission for conducting fair and peaceful elections. Whenever Bangladesh Awami League, a party of commoners, comes to power, it ensures the socioeconomic development of the country’s people. It also ensures food, security, health treatment, housing, education and employment of the people and massive infrastructure development.

We believe in peace, not in conflict. At the international level, we believe in the principle of ‘Friendship to all, malice to none’. We are moving forward with this principle. We have developed every institution keeping pace with the present era aiming to protect independence and sovereignty.

We do not want war, we want peace. We want an end to the wars in Palestine and Ukraine. We want an end to the genocide going in Palestine. Bangladesh always stands by the people of Palestine.

Dear Countrymen,

You have given the Awami League the opportunity to serve you by voting for boat. I express my gratitude.

 As much as we have achieved during this long journey, all of it is your contribution.

 This would not have been possible without your cooperation. If we have made any mistakes in our journey, forgive us - this is my request. If we can form the government again, we will get a chance to correct the mistakes we did in the past. Please give me another opportunity to serve you by voting for the 'Boat' in the January 7 election.

Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had struggled throughout his life to realise the rights of the people of this country and bring smile on the faces of the distress people.

 By losing my father, mother and brothers, I am standing by you making the pains a resort. I have found the love of my parents and affection of brothers in you. You are my family so keep trust in me. Let’s all build this Bangladesh a Smart Sonar Bangla and fulfill the dream of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib.

I want to say with the words of poet Sukanta-

Our time has come

We need to move forward

Our time has come to march forward this morning

At the global level, on an equal footing with others

Do not look back, let us move forward

Chant the victorious slogan in the morning

(“Amader Dak Aseche

Ebar Pathe Chalte Hobe.

Dak Aseche Chalte Hobe Aj Saokale

Biswapathe Sabar Sathe Saman Tale.

Pichon Pane Takasni Aj, Chol Sammokhe

Joyer Bani Notun Prate Bol O Mukhe.”)

Khoda Hafez.

Joy Bangla, Joy Bangabandhu

May Bangladesh live forever.


Awami League   President   Sheikh Hasina   Election   Smart Bangladesh  


Inside Bangladesh

Empowerment of the Third Gender: The Silent Revolution of the LDDP Project

Publish: 04:05 PM, 05 Apr, 2024


Khairun is a member of the third gender community. However, unlike many others, she doesn't wander the streets or engage in indecent behavior, nor does she beg for money. Instead, she spends her time cutting grass when needed and giving time to children. She prioritizes taking care of her family members, which consumes most of her time amidst her busy schedule. Her dreams revolve around her entire family, and she's steadily advancing towards fulfilling those dreams. And the Livestock and Dairy Development Project (LDDP) of the Department of Livestock has been a companion in fulfilling that dream.

I am talking about Khairun Hijra from Kandapara village in the Kalia Haripur Union of Sirajganj Sadar, who is identified as a member of the third gender community. However, Khairun's notable identity now lies in being a full-time farmer and an active member of the livestock and dairy development project's PG Group. Her identification number is 68878-SC-03-11. Initially, Khairun embarked on her journey with 20 high-quality breed chickens, but presently, her farm accommodates 5 cows, 8 goats, and several chickens. Additionally, one of her goats gave birth two months adairy

Khairun Hijra started with 20 chickens but faced difficulties due to an unknown disease that killed a few chickens. She contacted the Upazila Livestock Office for advice. They suggested selling the remaining chickens and investing in goats or other livestock. Following their advice, she sold the chickens for nearly 10,000 taka and bought two goats at 5,000 taka each. However, her luck turned as now she has 8 goats in her farm. Similarly, starting with a cow, she now has 5 cows, allowing her to sell 7 to 9 liters of cow milk daily.

Khairun Hijra told Bangla Insider that, "I have received training at the Upazila Livestock Office. Then they gave me 20 chickens. However, I couldn't benefit much from them. So, I sold the chickens and bought goats instead. Later, I bought a cow. Now I have 5 cows, 8 goats, and quite a few chickens on my farm.

When asked about her plan regarding this farm, she said, "Everyone dreams of being successful. I also dream that one day I will become a successful farmer. For that, I need investment here, which is difficult and extremely challenging for me. Because of being a transgender, no one wants to lend us money. Especially, getting institutional loans is difficult for us. So if the government arranges interest-free loans for us, then I and  thousands of other transgenders like me can progress further. They can be self reliant. They won't have to beg. Besides, my request to the government is to consider providing goats or cows instead of chickens, which would be more beneficial.

It is to known that the Department of Livestock has formed Producer Groups (PGs) nationwide for small-scale farmers. The purpose is to organize these farmers through these PGs and provide various forms of assistance, especially training, technology, etc., and to achieve the desired development in the livestock sector through enhancing their capabilities. Throughout the country, there are a total of 6,500 PGs. Each group consists of approximately 20 to 40 members. Among the total 6,500 PGs, this one in Sirajganj is one and the only third-gender PG.

In the PG group, there is not only Khairun Hijra, but also 14 other members, making a total of 15 members in the PG group. Among them are Sohagi Hijra (68878-SC-03-12), Md Sabuj alias Shankhini (68878-SC-03-13), Shetu Hijra (68878-SC-03-15) and some others. All of them are active members of the PG Group.

Sirajganj District Hijra (Third Gender) Association President Md. Omar Farooq Rabbi told Bangla Insider that we are working with a 15-member PG team consisting of transgenders and hijras formed by upazila livestock. Upazila Livestock Department is giving us a lot of support. We receive different types of training, learned about the relationship between cattle and gender diversity, what are the duties and responsibilities of a PG team, duties and responsibilities of a team president, cashier and PG team policies.

He further stated, "We each save 100 taka per member every month. We have an account for our PG team at Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank. Initially, we received 20 chickens from the upazila. We take care of them and try to advance. We request the Livestock Department from our PG team to provide us with cows and goats so that we can become more self-reliant. So that, we won't have to rely on others anymore. We want to earn our living through our own work. We don't want to depend on anyone's charity. We have formed a team to show that the hijras want to work and earn their living like the mainstream society. If we receive cooperation from society, we too can lead a normal life.

Sirajganj Upazila Livestock Officer Dr. Md. Alamgir Hossain said, when we go to the railway stations or markets, we often see transgendes begging from others and the LDDP project had an opportunity to bring the backward communities into the mainstream. Dr. Nazrul Islam Jhantu Sir, the then regional director of Rajshahi first had this idea that if we can form a team with them, then they will be self reliant and they will no longer have to beg for money. They can be an equal part of the mainstream society. Based on this idea, we proposed it to the Department of Livestock. The authority accepted it. Then we provided them with training and initially gave them 20 chickens. Alongside, we provided chicken feed and utensils. From there, they are now in a good position.

Mentioning this hijra PG group of Sirajganj as an example, the upazila livestock officer said, We are proceeding with how to work with hijra on a larger scale. There are 2 thousand five hijras in Sirajganj district. We have plans to expand this group further. Now we give them only chicken in the beginning. But we have plans to give them cows or goats in the near future. If we can work with them on a larger scale, there will be a revolution in society.

Third Gender   LDDP Project   Department of Livestock  


Inside Bangladesh

Govt transforming Coast Guard into three-dimensional force: PM

Publish: 04:49 PM, 10 Mar, 2024


Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today said her government has been turning Bangladesh Coast Guard (BCG) into a modern and three-dimensional force adding ultra-modern smart technologies, ships and helicopters to face the 21st century's challenges.

"None will lag behind. The coast guard will be made capable to face the 21st century's challenges with inclusion of modern technology based ships, helicopters and the force's communication system development," she said.

The premier said this while addressing a function marking 29th founding anniversary of the BCG and the BCG Day-2024 at the Coast Guard Headquarters in capital's Agargaon area.

She said her government is going to add high quality modern ship, maritime surveillance system-incorporated hovercraft and high speed boats to the coast guard fleet to make the force more modern and stronger.

At the same function, the premier also inaugurated Bangladesh Coast Guard Vsatnet Communication System and newly constructed six physical infrastructures at the BCG stations at Kutubdia, Maheshkhali, Mirsarai, Sandwip, Nidraskina and Shahpari Outpost.

The inclusion of the V-Satnet Communication System that will connect the coast guard with the Bangabandhu Satellite-1 will enhance the force's communication and operational abilities, Sheikh Hasina said.

She said, "We have already given approval to purchase two helicopters and formed an aviation wing for the coast guard to make it a three-dimensional force."

The premier said her government has also consented to buy 4 more OPVs, 2 maritime version helicopters for patrolling and ensuring safety and security at the deep sea area.

She stressed securing the vast maritime boarders saying nowadays 90 percent business are being done by the marine ways.

She said her government has also nodded to construct nine replacement ships for the force.

The head of the government said already 16 ships and 138 boats were inducted to the force's fleet to strengthen its capacity.

The prime minister said they will increase the existing manpower of the force to 15000 in phases with its modernisation to enhance capability to ensure security in the vast sea areas and protect its resources.

Sheikh Hasina said a dockyard is being built at Gazaria in Munshiganj aimed at constructing, repairing and maintaining the vessels and ships.

The prime minister said her government is working to enrich the tourism sector alongside taking initiative to turn Bangladesh into an attraction hub of both the east and west.

She highly praised the coast guard personnel for standing beside the innocent and helpless people in the coastal belts by warding off many criminal acts.

She asked the BCG personnel to perform duties and responsibilities as the friend of the people.

Sheikh Hasina reiterated her government's commitment to transform the country into developed, prosperous and smart Sonar Bangladesh by 2041.

"The coast guard will play a special role in building the smart Bangladesh," she hoped.

She said the coast guard had emerged as a force in 1994 in line with a bill brought in the Jatiya Sangsad by the then opposition party Awami League.

The prime minister said the AL government has always attached priorities to the development of the Bangladesh Coast Guard.

Coming to power for the first time in 1996, she said her government took massive initiative for the force's development providing required logistic supports including giving lands for building its zones, adding different types of vessels and making infrastructure development.

Then, after coming to power for the second time, she said various infrastructures including coastal crisis management centre, accommodation of the officers and sailors of bases, officers' mess, sailors' quarters and administrative buildings have been built at the coast guard stations and outposts in coastal and remote areas.

The prime minister said Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman enacted "The Territorial Waters and Maritime Zones Act" in 1974 to establish the legal rights of the countrymen over the sea and marine resources.

She said the United Nations (UN) formulated such a law in 1982.

She also said her government has established rights on a vast maritime area after winning legal battles with neighbouring India and Myanmar maintaining friendly relations following the path of Bangabandhu.

The prime minister conferred Bangladesh Coast Guard Medals, Bangladesh Coast Guard (Service) Medals, President Coast Guard Medals and President Coast Guard (Service) Medals on its former and current personnel for their contribution and bravery.

Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan, Public Security Division Secretary of the ministry Md Mustafizur Rahman and BCG Director General Rear Admiral Mir Ershad Ali were present at the function.

At the outset of the programme, a smartly turned out contingent of the Bangladesh Coast Guard also gave a state-salute and guard of honour to the prime minister. A short video documentary on Coast Guard Vsatnet System was screened. Later, the prime minister enjoyed a cultural programme.

Coast Guard Bangladesh   Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina   Bangladesh  


Inside Bangladesh

BGB being equipped with smart technology to protect frontiers: PM

Publish: 05:51 PM, 04 Mar, 2024


Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today said the government has been equipping BGB with state-of-the-art technology to ensure foolproof security at the frontiers and tackle transnational crimes.
"Smart digital surveillance and technical response system have been installed at borders aimed at ensuring foolproof security and facing inter-country terrorism," she said.

The premier was addressing as the chief guest a function marking the Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) Day-2024 at Bir Uttam Anwar Hossain Parade Ground at BGB headquarters in the city.

Sheikh Hasina said her government has set up a rudder at Shahparir Dweep in Teknaf of Cox's Bazar to enhance surveillance across the Bangladesh border with Myanmar.

"With installation of state-of-the-art, modern and time-befitting technologies, the operational capacities of the BGB to be enhanced while their eagerness for work and skill will be increased manifolds," she said.

Sheikh Hasina continued that they adopted the 'Border Guard Bangladesh Vision-2041' to turn it into a world standard and modern force.

"One day, the BGB will be built as world-class border protection force. And the BGB will always work at the frontiers being a symbol of trust of the people," she said.

The Prime Minister said her government has been pursuing the Vision 2041 to build Bangladesh as a developed, prosperous and Smart Bangladesh by 2041 as envisioned by the Father of the Nation.

"We will build BGB as a smart force," she assured.

Sheikh Hasina said her government had enacted Border Guard Bangladesh Act, 2010 to make the force more stronger.

"We have built the BGB as the three-dimensional force. The force now can conduct operation in air, road and water ways. We purchased two helicopters for the BGB," she said.

Apart from these, the BGB has divided into five regions and five additional director generals have been entrusted with those, the premier said.

She continued that new units, sectors and regions have been set up in the paramilitary force aimed at bringing balance to its organisational capacity.

The premier said her government has appointed 35,517 personnel in the BGB in the last 15 years and planned to recruit 15,000 more by 2041.

She said they have first recruited women in the BGB in 2015 while 996 women are now working in the force.

The Prime Minister said training is a must for any disciplined force to enhance their professional capacities.

So, she said that the government has already set up a Border Guard Training Centre and College at Satkania in Chattogram while a complete training centre is being set up at Chuadanga district.

Bangladesh has so far built 1036 kilometers of frontier roads with India while 317-km with Myanmar, Sheikh Hasina said.
The Premier went on saying that they have built 62 BOPs which have brought 402-km out of 539 unprotected frontiers under surveillance while 242 more BOPs will also be installed.

She said that four battalions with India and Myanmar borders were installed while two in Sundarbans.

"The BGB personnel have now been able to smoothly protect the frontiers, check crimes and ensure safety and security of the lives and properties of the frontier people due to the measures taken by the government," Sheikh Hasina said.

She said BGB have always been standing by the people to protect their lives and properties and tackle anarchies like arson violence alongside protecting the frontiers.

"BGB has achieved confidence and trust of the people by standing beside them in their need," Sheikh Hasina said.

The premier appreciated BGB performance in discharging their duties with dedication and professionalism in ensuring security on the borders.

She also praised the BGB personnel for their role in checking smuggling in contraband goods and drugs, women and children, cross-border crimes and ensuring security of life and property of the frontier people.

Sheikh Hasina noted as well BGB role in maintaining security and safety at Rohingya camps in Cox's Bazar alongside with the armed forces, police and RAB.

The Prime Minister said they have given shelter over 10 lakh Rohingyas in Bangladesh on humanitarian grounds and are now holding discussion with Myanmar to settle the problem by sending back their nationals.

"We're not going to engage in any altercation with them rather to hold talks to settle down the problem," she said.

To this end, the premier said they have set an example for the rest of the world to solve the land boundary problem with India by exchanging enclaves with each other in a peaceful manner following the Land Boundary Agreement enacted by the Father of the Nation.

She also said they also solved the marine boundary problems with neighboring India and Myanmar following the law enacted by the Father of the Nation in 1974 to pave the way of establishing rights on the marine resources.

The Prime Minister has asked the BGB personnel again to maintain discipline and chain of command of the force.

"Maintaining chain of command is crucial for any disciplined force. Keep it in mind, never breach the discipline and maintain the chain of command," she said.

Against the backdrop of the Russia-Ukraine war and attack in Gaza, the premier reiterated her call to bring every inch of fallow lands under cultivation to grow more food as Bangladesh doesn't need to seek help from anyone.

"Use every inch of your land at home and office premises for cultivation. Everyone has to contribute to this end," she said.

Sheikh Hasina described the 25-26 February, 2009 incident in the paramilitary force as very unfortunate in which 74 people including 57 personnel of the force were killed.

"They who committed the incident have already brought to the justice. So, no such incident will take place (in the force in the days to come)," she said.

The premier recalled those who were killed at that gruesome incident and prayed for eternal peace of the departed souls and conveyed deep sympathy to their bereaved families.

The premier also unveiled a sculpture of Bangabandhu titled "Prerona" at the BGB headquarters in Pilkhana.

On her arrival at the BGB headquarters, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan, Senior Secretary of the Public Security Division Md. Mustafizur Rahman and Director General of the BGB Major General Mohammad Ashrafuzzaman Siddiqui received the premier.

At the outset of the programme, the Prime Minister reviewed the parade riding on an open jeep accompanied by the BGB DG and escorted by the parade commander.

She, later, witnessed the spectacular parade of the four contingents along with the national flag bearing party of the paramilitary force and took a state salute from the welcome dais.

The prime minister later distributed the BGB Medal, President BGB Medal, BGB Medal-Service, and President BGB Medal-Service among 72 selected BGB personnel for their operational and non-operational outstanding contribution.

She later joined a traditional interactive "darbar" of the BGB.

BGB   Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina   Bangladesh  


Inside Bangladesh

PM asks police to serve people, control terrorism

Publish: 01:55 PM, 27 Feb, 2024


Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today asked the police force to serve the people and play an active role in containing militancy, terrorism and corruption.

"I ask the police force to serve the countrymen. The main motto of the police is to prevent bad people and to protect good ones. We always want the police to earn confidence and trust of the people through their works," she said.

The premier made the remarks while inaugurating the Police Week-2024 in the capital's Rajarbagh Police Lines this morning.

She reminded the police force that people first look for shelter to the police if they fall into any danger.

"So, we expect police to work with profound patriotism and they will have more affection for the people," she said.

The prime minister reiterated her commitment to continue drive against the militancy, terrorism, drug abuse and corruption.

"Police force will have to play active role in pursuing the government policy," she said.

She also said it is mandatory to maintain peace and stability for development and prosperity of the country.

The prime minister said the people of Bangladesh will not live by begging to any country rather to move around the globe keeping their heads high with due dignity.

"So, we have to increase our food production and make our economy more developed," she said, reiterating her call to the countrymen to grow more food by cultivating every inch of land.

The premier said they are committed to transforming Bangladesh into a developed, prosperous and smart one by 2041.

"The police force will have to play a special role in the journey of Bangladesh towards prosperity," she said.

Sheikh Hasina said her government has been working to make police a smart, time befitting force equipped with modern technologies due to the new dimension of crimes.

Prior to opening the police week, the prime minister reviewed the parade of the Bangladesh Police riding on an open jeep and took the salute.

Different police contingents staged a spectacular parade to mark the police week.

The theme of this year's Police Week is 'Smart police, smart country, Bangladesh is of peace and progress'.

The premier awarded thirty-five policemen Bangladesh Police Medal (BPM-bravery) and 60 others President Police Medal (PPM-bravery) in recognition of their courageous work.

In addition, 95 policemen got BPM service medal while 210 PPM service medal as well.

Earlier on her arrival at the venue, the prime minister was received by Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan, Public Security Division Senior Secretary Md. Mustafizur Rahman and Inspector General of Police (IGP) Chowdhury Abdullah Al-Mamun. 

Cabinet members, parliament members and senior government officials were present. 

At the outset of the programme, the national anthem was played.



Inside Bangladesh

PM attributes country's development to independent judiciary, strong parliament

Publish: 09:18 AM, 25 Feb, 2024


Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today said her government has taken various initiatives to ensure justice for people, attributing any country's development to independent judiciary, strong parliament and administration.

"After assuming power, we've made the judiciary totally independent separating it from the administration, which was the vision of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman," she said.

The premier said this while addressing the closing session of the two-day International Conference on "South Asian Constitutional Courts in the Twenty-First Century: Lessons from Bangladesh and India" as the chief guest at Bangabandhu International Conference Center (BICC) here.

She said once judiciary was dependent on the government for financial ground. But, her government has separated the judiciary by allocating separate budget for it, she said.

The Awami League government, as well, has enacted a law for the formulation of Election Commission (EC) as it was earlier attached to the Prime Minister's Office, Sheikh Hasina said.

"We've also made the EC completely independent and allocated separate fund for it," she said, adding, "That means, we believe it, and for that purpose, the Awami League government could make it."

Apart from ensuring the independence of the judiciary, the government has made EC independent for the sake of election system so that it could ensure the rights of the people properly.

The prime minister said she wants the people of her country to get justice.

"Like us, they, as if, aren't to be subjected to injustice. So, the rights of getting justice and democratic, economic, social and cultural rights of the countrymen will have to be ensured," she said.

Highlighting initiatives taken by the Awami League government, she said since her government assumed office; they have started implementing different programs so that people get justice.

Referring to the government's announcement to transform Bangladesh into Smart Country by 2041, Sheikh Hasina said, "I want the judiciary to be Smart as well."

She said the government has included an article in the Constitution as per the High Court verdict declaring illegal grabbing of state power a punishable offence.

"By this inclusion, I can say that the basic democratic rights of the people are protected," she added.

She extended her gratitude to the Chief Justice of Bangladesh as she described his various initiatives to make the Judiciary smart.

Sheikh Hasina also thanked the Higher Court for delivering verdict that declared illegal the 5th and 7th amendments of the Constitution done by the military rulers to grab state power through proclaiming martial law.

"It has contributed to the country's socioeconomic advancement ensuring democratic consistency of the country since 2009. It also helped keep continuing stable situation in the country since then," she observed.

She added that this historic verdict of the higher court gave breathing space of the people of the country.

Sheikh Hasina said it is a proven truth that getting justice in people's life and socioeconomic development can only be done when the basic rights of the people are ensured and thus a country can move towards prosperity.

She continued: "By the 15th amendment of the Constitution we have strengthened the democracy."

The head of the government said that Bangladesh has achieved the recognition of developing country which will come to effect from 2026.

"Inshaallah by 2041, we will be able to make country as developed and prosperous Golden Bangladesh to materialise the ideals of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman," she added.

Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Anisul Huq spoke at the function as special guest while Indian Chief Justice Dr Dhananjaya Yeshwant Chandrachud spoke as guest of honour.

With Bangladesh Chief Justice Obaidul Hassan in the chair, Appellate Division Justice M. Enayetur Rahim delivered the welcome address.