Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday said Bangladesh will make no more request to any donor agencies for financing the Padma bridge project.
“We will not pursue anyone anymore for constructing the Padma bridge,” she said after inaugurating a three-day conference of the deputy commissioners at the Prime Minister’s Office on Tuesday.
Hasina said she had received numerous phone calls in support of her decision to construct the much-talked about bridge with own fund.
“Teachers, school-going students, youths, upazila chairmen, and lot more people have promised me to help by providing financial aid according to their ability,” the PM said.
She also said her government will not tolerate corruption and extravagant spending under any circumstances.
The premier also called upon the deputy commissioners (DC) to serve the people sincerely.
“Remember, your educational expenses were met up by the income of the rural people. Your salary and other benefits are also coming from the income of rural people. So, it is your moral duty to contribute to the development of these people,” said the PM.
There is no scope to adapt policy of stepping aside or going slow to the development activities, the PM said.
She also stressed the need to start the development work from the very beginning of the year.
The premier also urged them to enforce the Vested Property Return (amendment) Act 2011 properly in their respective areas.
She urged them to contribute to the augmentation of agricultural land and to take steps to convert barren land into arable one.
“It is rainy season now. Please, stand by the people during flood and river erosion whenever it occurs. People want to get you beside them at the time of such disaster. If you stand by them people feel confident to face any adverse situation,” the PM told the DCs.
At the inaugural session, the premier also directed the deputy commissioners to create land management policy showing plans to build housing, educational institutions, industries and others so that the government can ensure electricity and other modern facilities there.
Padma Bridge with own fund, reaffirms PM
Wed, 11/07/2012 – 6:27pm | by Sharmaluna
Renewing her strong commitment to build the country’s biggest Padma Bridge with own fund, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said she cannot earn any bad name without committing anything wrong.
“I’m confident I didn’t do anything wrong. So, I won’t accept any disrepute (regarding the Padma Bridge),” she said adding, “Inshallah, we’ll begin the construction work on the Padma Bridge.”
The Prime Minister was addressing the inaugural session of the National Council 2012 of Awami Swechchasebak League at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre.
AL organising secretary AFM Bahabuddin Nasim, Swechchasebak League president Molla Md Abu Kawser, general secretary Pankaj Debnath spoke on the occasion. Nirmal Ranjan Guha delivered the welcome address.
In a scathing attack on the World Bank, Hasina raised question for whose interest the lending agency cheated the common people of Bangladesh with alleged suspicion of corruption.
She alleged the World Bank cancelled its US$ 1.2 billion loan to Bangladesh for Padma Bridge although they did not release even a single taka. “Had they (WB) released even one taka, then no question would have been raised.”
She mentioned that the government has so far spent Tk 1,500 crore on land acquisition and rehabilitation and no allegation of corruption was raised in this regard even by the World Bank.
The AL chief also recalled that the World Bank had cancelled funding in seven projects in communication and power sectors during the tenure of BNP-Jamaat for their corruption.
Responding to the criticism that the government would not be able to build the bridge with its own fund, Hasina said, “We don’t want to beg. If we take loan then we’ll repay it with interest. It’s not begging…the people of Bangladesh didn’t bow to anyone and will do it never.”
She went on: “I believe we’ll be able to begin the construction work on the Padma Bridge as we haven’t assumed power to commit corruption, and we’re not in power for the first time.”
Referring to the overwhelming response of the common people when the Prime Minister made her cellphone numbers public, Hasina mentioned the people of Bangladesh have proved that the present government is on the path of truth and justice regarding the bridge issue.
The Prime Minister said if the donors come up with their offer to fund the bridge, the government would only decide after scrutiny whether it would take the assistance.
She alleged that the opposition leader and her family members had indulged in corruption and siphoned off money abroad. “Even Khaleda Zia, being a former Prime Minister, whitened black money paying fine.”
Hasina mentioned that the trial of the 10-truck arms haul case in Chittagong, August 21 grenade attack case and the trial of war criminals are already underway, and the perpetrators would be brought to justice.
Referring to the BDR mutiny, she alleged why the opposition leader had gone underground coming out of her the then cantonment residence just 2-3 hours before the mutiny started in a vehicle featuring black glasses and why Khaleda did not return to her residence for the next one and a half months.
“The mystery is gradually unfolding,” she added.
Stating that the BDR mutiny case is being held in a disciplined manner, the Prime Minister said the trial of the killing case in BDR mutiny has also begun and urged all to remain alert about those trying to save the killers through obstructing the trial.
Hasina alleged after losing her cantonment residence following a court verdict, Khaleda Zia cried her heart out, called programmes like hartal and even burned innocent people to death.
On the other hand, she said, Awami League does politics only to serve the people of the country.
Highlighting various successes and achievements the country made during the tenure of the present government, the Prime Minister said some 1.30 crore people came under the new power network along with 25 lakh new power connections, employment opportunities have been created for some 75 lakh people, including 4.5 lakh, in the public sector.
She also mentioned holding of over 5,200 different elections in a free, fair and neutral manner, increasing the foreign currency reserve to over US$ 10 billion, increasing export earnings and attaining food security.
Mentioning that her government has revived the spirit of the Liberation War through the 15th amendment to the constitution, the Prime Minister expressed her strong resolve to turn the country into a middle-income one by 2021.
She also directed the leaders and activists of Awami Swechchasebak League to project the development activities of the government as well as to render their services for ensuring welfare of the common people to build ‘Sonar Bangla’ as dreamt by father of the nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
Dipu Moni taps potential financiers
Sat, 15/10/2011 – 1:26am | by priyodesk
Foreign Minister Dr Dipu Moni said she discussed with a number potential financiers the urgency of financing the Padma Bridge during her important US trip, as a major donor agency apparently backed out.
Talking to banglanews at John F Kennedy Airport here before her departure for home, Dipu Moni said she had discussions with “World Bank’s vice president, US Congressional Caucus leaders, think tanks, international investors, trading partners and US Chambers of Commerce about the mater of financing the Padma Bridge” during her three-day tour. The foreign minister took the initiative in arranging necessary funds for the dream bridge over the mighty Padma when the finance minister’s mission during his US tour virtually failed to persuade the World Bank headquarters. When asked about the success of the trip, the foreign minister told banglanews, “I held a friendly meeting with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and I am very pleased about the fruitful discussion.” The prime minister also visited the USA few days ago,” she said when asked about the premier’s visit to Washington.[slideshow][slideshow]