Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today called for full utilisation of mutual cooperation between Bangladesh and India and hoped that both the countries would continue this trend of cooperation in the future. "The 'far beyond strategic relationship' between Bangladesh and India is often considered as a 'model of bilateral relation' for the rest of the world. So, we can firmly declare that both the countries will continue this trend of cooperation in the future," she said. The prime minister said this while inaugurating the newly constructed Bangladesh Bhavan jointly with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Bisva Bharati University here this afternoon. The premier said Bangladesh Bhavan in Shantiniketan would enhance the cultural bond between Bangladesh and India which would further strengthen bilateral relationship. "This is a small piece of Bangladesh in Tagore's Santiniketan from where the spirit of Bangladesh will be reflected ... this spirit influenced by Rabindranath will be unique in its own way," she said. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi hoped that Bangladesh Bhaban would be a symbol of cultural exchange between Bangladesh and India. He thanked Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for coming to Santiniketan and have the opportunity to inaugurate Bangladesh Bhaban with her. On the very outset of the programme, students in Santiniketan performed the national anthems of Bangladesh and India while the function began with playing song of Rabindranath "Anandaloke Mongolaloke". West Bengal Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Bondopadhya and Vice Chancellor of the university Sabuj Koli Sen were present on the occasion. Prime Minister's sister Sheikh Rehana and a number of dignitaries from both counties including litterateurs, academics, poets, singers and artistes were present. Sheikh Hasina said as a neighbour Bangladesh wants to move together with India and in view of this all problems between the two countries have been resolved. "However, we have still some problems unresolved which I don't want to raise here in the interest of congenial atmosphere of the inaugural function," she said. "But, I firmly believe that any sort of problems can be resolved through friendly attitude," she noted. "At present, cooperation between the two countries in various traditional and non-traditional sectors is increasing and multifaceted relationship of the countries has reached a new height in the last nine years," she said. Sheikh Hasina expressed her firm optimism that Bangladesh and India will be able to achieve socio-economic development through full utilisation of mutual cooperation. Sheikh Hasina said she believes that Bangladesh Bhaban will play a significant role in increasing the cultural exchanges and the people-to- people contact between the two countries. "Bangladesh Bhavan will be a centre of excellence where students can study and conduct research on the glorious Liberation War of Bangladesh, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Rabindranath and history and culture of Bangladesh as well," she said. As a citizen of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina said, she is overwhelmed at the establishment of 'Bangladesh Bhavan' on the premise associated with the memories of Rabindranath Tagore. Sheikh Hasina thanked Visva Bharati University authority, government of West Bengal, government of India and the friendly people of India for giving us the opportunity to establish Bangladesh Bhavan on Visva Bharati premises. Bangladesh government spent about 25 crore rupees for the construction of this two-storied building, she said, and declared giving one-time corpus fund equivalent to Rs 10 core for the maintenance of the building and conducting its activities. To facilitate the researchers, the building has a library, auditorium, cafeteria, museum with digital features, archive and other necessary amenities. Sheikh Hasina said Rabindranath kept Bangladesh close to his heart and although he was born in Kolkata, he spent a considerable time of his life in Patisar, Shilaidaha and Shahjadpur of Bangladesh. "Rabindranath used to visit those places to oversee his zamindari, however, he was more concerned with the welfare of his poor subjects and he was always with them in their happiness and sorrows," the prime minister said. Sheikh Hasina said Rabindranath observed closely the nature of the riverine rural Bengal and their agro-based society and created extraordinary songs, poems, novels and short stories in those places. In Patisar he established agro-cooperative and introduced microcredit initiatives. Sheikh Hasina said her relationship with Visva-Bharati dates back quite a few years. Since receiving the 'Deshikottom' award from the institute in 1999, Sheikh Hasina said she was longing for a separate centre for Bangladesh Studies in Santiniketan. Sheikh Hasina said Rabindranath is associated with all the stages of Bangladesh's freedom movement. In 1948, under the leadership of the then young student leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman the Bengali nation started its struggle to keep intact the dignity of their mother tongue. "Our struggle for independence originated in our language movement. In 1961, during the birth centenary of Rabindranath Tagore Pakistani ruling elite undertook a notorious move to ban the songs and works of Rabindranath. The people of our land stood against that conspiracy," she said. "We struggled to uphold the spirit of Rabindranath in our heart. During our glorious Liberation War, Tagore Songs inspired us immensely and provided us with courage and strength," she said. The premier said the greatest Bengali of all time Father of the Nation of Bangladesh Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman dreamt throughout his life to establish a poverty, hunger and exploitation free liberal society. Like Tagore, she said, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman also believed that the world will never prosper unless hostility is eradicated. Hence, he adopted, "Friendship to all, malice to none" as the Foreign Policy of Bangladesh. Following his principle, she said, Bangladesh has built close friendship with all its neighbours particularly with India. Since ancient times, the people of these two land have shared common historical, social, linguistic, cultural and emotional bonds. Sheikh Hasina said she personally is owed to the people of India as late Indian Prime Minister Indira Ghandi had given shelter to her and her sister Sheikh Rehana after killing of their parents on August 15, 1975. People of Bangladesh would remember this support forever. [i]BSS[/i]
India and Bangladesh are two separate countries bonded by cooperation and understanding, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said here today. Modi, who was here to attend the convocation ceremony of the Visva Bharati University, shared the dais with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and the university Vice Chancellor Sabujkoli Sen. "India and Bangladesh are two separate countries, bonded by cooperation and understanding. Be it culture or public policy, the people of the two countries get to learn a lot from each other," the prime minister said. One such example is Bangladesh Bhavan, Modi asserted. Modi, who is the 'acharya' or chancellor of the central university, is scheduled to inaugurate the Bangladesh Bhavan, a "symbol of cultural ties between India and Bangladesh", with Hasina and hold a bilateral meeting there, varsity officials said yesterday. [i]Source: economictimes[/i]
Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader said that Myanmar sent Yaba pills along with Rohingyas like a Tsunami. The Minister made the opinion while addressing a program over Aduria Bhulta flyover construction on Dhaka-Sylhet Highway at the project office in Narayanganj on Friday noon. Obaidul Quader said that no one will be spared for illegal drugs trading. "The law enforcers will take action if any drug crime is proved.The Sheikh Hasina government raised voice against drugs first," he added. Deputy Commissioners of Narayanganj, Narsingdi, Brahmanbaria and Habiganj, police super and other high officials were attended the function.
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee is expected to hold a separate meeting with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Saturday. Besides, she can attend the meeting scheduled between India Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his counterpart Sheikh Hasina after the Visva-Bharati convocation. Mamata herself confirmed the news on Thursday, saying the Teesta river water sharing issue would not be discussed in the meeting. "We will be meeting in Kolkata before she (Hasina) leaves for Bangladesh. There is no place for discussion on Teesta river," Mamata told newsmen. The chief minister said that she shared a very cordial relationship with Hasina and no geographical or political boundary can create differences between West Bengal and Bangladesh as they have the same culture and language. "I admire Hasina-di most and she loves me. Our relationship is very honest and everlasting. I hope the relation between India and Bangladesh will grow stronger with time," she said. Mamata had earlier said that the Teesta river was the lifeline of north Bengal and there was very little water in it. She had said other transnational rivers could be diverted to meet Bangladesh's water needs. The Teesta water sharing issue was discussed by the two countries in New Delhi on April 9. The chief minister is in Shantiniketan to participate in the Visva-Bharati convocation on Friday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Sheikh Hasina will address the programme. [i]Source: Agencies[/i]
The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) on Tuesday approved the Padma Bridge Rail Link Project (first revised) involving Tk 39,246.80 crore. It also cleared 15 other projects, including the 4th Primary Education Development Programs (PEDP-4), involving Tk 38,397.16 crore. The approval came from the regular weekly meeting of Ecnec, held at the NEC conference room with Ecnec Chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair. "A total of 16 projects were approved with an estimated cost of Tk 96,235 crore,” said Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal while briefing reporters after the meeting. Of the overall estimated cost, Tk 52,685.05 crore will come from government funds, while Tk 43,221.17 crore as project assistance and Tk 328.55 crore from the own funds of the organisations concerned. Among the 16 approved projects, 12 are new while four are revised ones. The Padma Bridge Rail Link Project will be implemented by June 2024. The original cost of the project was Tk 34,988.86 crore, which has now been raised to Tk 39,246.80 crore.
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia on Tuesday filed two separate petitions with the High Court (HC) seeking bail in two more cases. Khaleda Zia’s lawyer filed the petitions with the HC bench of Justice M Enayetur Rahim and Justice Sahidul Karim after taking prior permission from the court. Advocate Khandaker Mahbub Hossain stood for Khaleda Zia while Barrister Kaiser Kamal and Advocate Masud Rana accompanied him. The hearing might be held tomorrow (Wednesday), said Masud Rana after filing the bail pleas. One of the cases was a defamation suit filed by Bangladesh Jananetri Parisad President AB Siddik on November 3, 2016 against Khaleda Zia for distorting history of Liberation War, demeaning the national flag and map. Later, an arrest warrant was issued on November 12 in 2017. The other was filed by Journalist Gazi Jahirul Islam on August 30, 2016 accusing Khaleda of observing birthday on August 15 on false information. Later on November 17, 2016, an arrest warrant issued against her. Earlier on Sunday, BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia filed three separate petitions with the HC seeking bail in three separate cases filed in Cumilla on charge of vandalising vehicles on January 25 in 2015 and killing seven persons and injuring 25-26 persons by setting fire on a passenger bus at an area of Chauddagram on February 2, 2015 and a Narail court on September 24, 2015, for making a statement about the number of freedom fighters and Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
[b] [/b][i]Khulna:[/i] The probe committee formed by the Election Commission (EC) has started investigation into irregularities and reasons behind suspension of voting at three polling stations in Khulna City Corporation (KCC) polls. The three-member committee talked several times to people who were concerned to the three polling stations since Tuesday morning. The investigation activities were held at the office of returning officer and regional election officer at Boyra. Chief of the probe body Khandaker Mizanur Rahman, also joint secretary of the EC secretariat, said the committee will submit a report to the EC after their investigation ends. Two other members of the committee Forhad Hossain, deputy secretary of the EC secretariat, and Shah Alam, senior assistant secretary of the EC secretariat, were present during the investigation. Yunus Ali, returning officer of the KCC election, said voting in the three polling stations will be held on May 30. For this, according to the directive of the EC Secretariat, people have already been informed about the re-election by a public declaration. Awami League mayoral candidate Talukder Abdul Khaleque won the KCC polls, defeating his nearest contender Nazrul Islam Monju of the BNP. But the election was marred by irregularities such as showdown by AL men in and around polling stations, stuffing ballot boxes and driving out polling agents of rival candidates. In the KCC polls, several polling centres saw unrealistic turnouts in between 80 to 99.94 percent while the overall turnout was less than 63 percent.
The Supreme Court began on Wednesday morning for the second consecutive day the hearing on the leave-to-appeal petitions challenging BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's bail that the High Court granted her in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case. The four-member bench of the Appellate Division, headed by Chief Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain, is hearing the appeals which began around 9:25am. Senior lawyer AJ Mohammad Ali, Supreme Court Bar Association President Advocate Zainul Abedin, Barrister Moudud Ahmed, Khandaker Mahbub Hossain and other senior lawyers stood for Khaleda Zia while Attorney General Mahbubey Alam moved for the state. BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, Standing Committee member Dr Abdul Moin Khan and others attended the court house. Earlier, on March 19, the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court stayed Khaleda Zia's bail till May 8 in the graft case. The SC also allowed the State and Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to file petitions against the HC order that granted bail to Khaleda. On February 8 last, the Dhaka Special Court-5 convicted the former Prime Minister and BNP chairperson and sentenced her to five years' imprisonment in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case. She was then sent to old central jail at Nazimuddin Road in the city.
LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Engineer Khandker Mosharraf Hossain on Tuesday hoped that the country would be a developing one by 2024 under the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. "Bangladesh has already attained the eligibility of graduation to a developing nation. By 2024, the country will attain the status of developing one," he told a discussion at the Holy Family Red Crescent Medical College auditorium, marking the World Red Crescent and Red Cross Day-2018. Chaired by Bangladesh Red Crescent Society chairman Hafij Ahmed Majumder, the discussion was addressed, among others, by its vice-chairman Prof Habibe Millat, MP, and treasurer Advocate Touhidur Rahman. Mosharraf said although different natural disasters hinder the pace of the country's development, Bangladesh will be able to become a middle income country by 2021 and developed one by 2041. He highlighted the different steps of the government taken to meet the challenge of various natural disasters Bangladesh faces every year.
Five people including a father and his son were killed in separate lightning strike incidents in Shahjadpur, Kazipur and Kamarkhanda upazilas of the district. The deceased were identified as Nabil Hossain, 17, son of Faruk Hasan, Paling Hasan, 16, son of Rashedul Hasan, Shamsul Mandal, 55, son of late Paresh Mandal, Arman, 14, son of Shamsul Mandal, and Kader Hossain, 37, son of later Aher Mandal. Kazipur Tekani union parishad chairman Harunar Rashid said Shamsul and his son were working in a field this morning. Meanwhile, a lightning struck them, leaving them dead on the spot. On the other hand, two college student named Nabil and Paling died when lightning stroke them in front of upazila land office on Sunday noon, leaving them injured. Later, the injured were sent to Potazia upazila health complex where doctor declared them dead. Besides, a farmer named Abdul Latif was working in his paddy field when he got struck by lightning around 10:00 in Pestok Kura village of Kamarkhanda upazila. Kamarkhanda upazila health complex medical officer Dr Tanzila Begum confirmed the matter.
A fire broke out at a multi-storey building at Hajipara area in Rampura of Dhaka on Sunday noon. The fire originated on the 6th floor of 12-storey ML Tower at Hajipara on Wapda Road at 1:47pm. Eleven units of fire fighters are working to extinguish the blaze, fire fighters said. Ataur Rahman, duty officer at the fire service headquarters, confirmed this to risingbd.com. It has been learnt that there is a garment factory named Asian Garments in the building.
Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) suspended all types of water vessels services from Sadarghat launch terminal in Dhaka due to calamitous weather. The BIWTA took the decision on Sunday noon. All passenger launches on 41 routes have remained halted. The suspension will remain until the situation improves, according to the BIWTA.