June 23, 2018
Nation celebrates Eid-ul-Fitr with due solemnity
The nation has celebrated the Eid-ul-Fitr, one of the greatest religious festivals of the Muslims, amid due solemnity, fervour, enthusiasm and gaiety ending the holy Ramadan, the month of fasting and abstinence. The very auspicious occasion began with the sighting of the Shawwal moon last evening and reached the climax this morning amid offering the Eid-ul-Fitr prayers by millions from all strata of life at mosques, eidgahs and makeshift prayer venues in the capital and elsewhere across the country. During munajats after Eid congregations (jamaats), the Muslims also prayed for divine blessings to help strengthen national unity against all odds and destructive activities, including terrorism and militancy. President Abdul Hamid and Honourable Prime Minister (HPM) Sheikh Hasina greeted the countrymen as well as the Muslims across the world on occasion of the holy Eid-ul-Fitr.
Bangladesh now hosts to one of the largest groups of displaced people in the world, the Rohingays. While the Rohingya have traditionally sought refugee in Bangladesh whenever they have encountered persecution in Myanmar, since august 2017, that number has exploded. In the last nine months around 7 million rohingyas have taken refugee in costal district. On the other hand, the country, with its limited resources, has been trying to accommodate the people fled Myanmar. For this humanitarian role, Honourable Prime Minister (HPM) Sheikh Hasina has received international praise and applause.
When the Digital Bangladesh efforts got underway seven years ago only 20 million of Bangladeshis were accessing mobile phone. Today that number has grown to more than 120 million and is still climbing. A total of 5,275 digital centers have been set up across the country that already served people 120 million times with services like registration of 70 million births and providing essential information to more than 2 million overseas job-seekers. Around 1.3 million ICT professionals, along with, 10,000 ICT entrepreneurs have become self-reliant, helping the country earn around $300 million over the years and turning Bangladesh as an emerging hub for ICT outsourcing. The total size of the ICT market in Bangladesh was merely $26 million in 2008 which now has reached $600 million. With the launching of the country's first satellite, the country has entered the space age on 11th May, 2018 (US Standard Time).
In the recent years Bangladesh’s commitment to combating extremism and terrorism has received glowing appraisal at both home and abroad. The country has ceased being a safe haven for national and transnational terrorists. Meanwhile, Bangladesh has also joined in the global efforts to maintain peace and security in the conflict-ridden parts of the world through being one of the highest contributors of troops to various United Nations Peacekeeping missions.
90% village under power supply
Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board (REB) has already brought 90 percent villages under power coverage. Moreover, activities for bringing the rest of 10% villages under electrify access have been underway. Presently, distribution line increased to 4,50,000 kilometre, transmission 11,060 circuit kilometre and capacity of the grid substation reached to 35,040 MVA. Moreover, the government is expected to ensure 100% electrification to all villages by December 2018. On the other hand, a plan to increase capacity of distribution and transmission line into twice as part of the 100 percent electrification by 2021.
Works are underway to ensure Rupsha 800 MW Combined Cycle Power plant would commence its generation in June 2021. To this end, the government floated the tender for construction of the power plant on 50 acres of land, would be constructed under North-West Power Generation Company with Asian Development Bank(ADB) and Islami Development Bank(IDB) finance. If the power plant is being implemented some 307 people would be employed and power connections would be given to new industries in the areas, which would help to poverty alleviation alongside improve socioeconomic condition.
Japan will provide about US$4.10 million in grant-in-aid to Bangladesh to develop its human resource. In line with this announcement Bangladesh and Japan signed an Exchange of Notes and Grant Agreement at the National Economic Council. Japan launched the project for Bangladeshi nationals since 2001under a project titled 'The Project for Human Resource Development Scholarship (JDS Project)'. The project will continue up to 2020.
The World Bank has provided $50 million to help develop standard housing facilities for the lower income people. To this end, a credit agreement has been signed between the World Bank and the government on June 30 in 2016. The main objective of the project is to build housing facilities for the poor slumdwellers at the area under two city corporation, a pourasava and 19 communities. Even the project will help create livelihood development of slum dwellers through supplying water, electricity, sewerage facilities and construction drains. Earlier, the name of the project was "Pro-poor Slums Integration Project."
The government is giving training to around twenty million women on different subjects including fashion design, mobile servicing and beatification to make them as entrepreneur. Another initiative by the government is underway to construct ‘Joyeeta Bhaban’ at every district for the women entrepreneurs. All those array of initiatives stand out as a testament to the government’s plan to change the course of national progress and to take the country forward.
Bangladesh expects the China-South Asia Cooperation Forum (CSACF) accelerates its cooperation in different arenas, including interconnectivity, business, poverty alleviation and finance in South Asia and China. In the 1st forum held in Kunming of China on June 15, they discussed various issues like capital market and green financing and took a clear concept for increasing cooperation in the development activities of the South Asian countries. The forum was attended by nearly 400 participants from China and South Asia, including Bangladesh and other countries from South East Asia, like Myanmar and Vietnam.
Bangladesh signed a deal with China to procure K-8W Jet trainer aircraft for Bangladesh Air Force (BAF). Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Plans) Air Vice Marshal M Sanaul Huq and Liu Jianhai, Vice President of CATIC, signed the agreement on behalf of Bangladesh and China respectively, at a ceremony at the Air Headquarters. The government-to-government agreement is part of the implementation process of Forces Goal-2030.
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