2023-06-06 07:44:16 BdST
PM sees next election as a challenge
Awami League President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today urged the party leaders and activists to take all out preparations for the next national polls saying it would be a challenge due to multifaceted conspiracies.
"The next election is a challenge because there are conspiracies from various quarters,” she said while exchanging views with the leaders, activists of Awami League (AL) and its associates bodies at her official residence Ganabhaban.
Sheikh Hasina said whenever the life of the country’s people is improving to some extent, some black sheep are here in Bangladesh, who speak against Bangladesh and spread falsehood everywhere.
Some people raise misconceptions about Bangladesh before foreigners to get international donations, she said.
Those who didn’t believe in the Independence of Bangladesh, committed genocide and other offenses including plundering, rape and repression during the Liberation War, their next generations are now relentlessly carrying out propaganda against Bangladesh, she added.
Mentioning that vote-rigging is a common habit of BNP, the premier said they have a record of vote-rigging and snatching democracy. “But, we can now hear (the lesson of) democracy from them,” she said.
“Now we have to hear the lesson on democracy and vote from a party which was formed in the hands of a military dictator. Stealing votes is their habit. So, what does the people of Bangladesh learn from those thieves?” she added.
The AL chief asked her party leaders and activists to work to strengthen their party further. “Our party is strong enough. We’ll have to take steps so the organisation will stay stronger,” she said.
Highlighting the development of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina said this development has been possible as her party has been in power for 14 years at a stretch after the 2008 general election and maintained a stable democratic environment in the country.
“We had wanted to change Bangladesh. Today we’ve successfully been able to change it (the country),” she said, adding, Bangladesh has graduated into a developing country.
“Our biggest achievement is that the poverty rate declined in the rural area. The poverty rate is high in Dhaka city, but lower in the rural areas. None could think of it in the past,” she said.
The Prime Minister said her government kept its pledge by providing electricity to every house, but Bangladesh is to face difficulties as the commodity prices, transport cost, prices of gas, fuel and coal soared up globally following the Russia- Ukraine conflict.
She said the interest rates of foreign loans were increased, which created a pressure on the country’s reserve of foreign currencies. However, there is still a reserve which is enough to procure food for next five months, she added.
The head of the government urged all to boost up agricultural production by not keeping any piece of land uncultivated in the country, in order to meet the local demand and also export those.
She said the food prices increased throughout the world and also in Bangladesh. Actually the people are suffering from the commodity price-hike, but the goods are available (in the market) and there is no scarcity of any item, she added.
Sheikh Hasina said Bangladesh has witnessed a good yielding of rice and other crops this time as well.
The premier said her government has recently unveiled the biggest national budget of Taka 761,785 crore. None could give such a big budget in the past and the most important matter is that the government has been able to give such a budget during this tough time, she said.
She said both the number of beneficiaries and the size of allowance under different social safety net programmes were increased in the budget.
Besides, the government has arranged a card system so that the low-income people can purchase some essential commodities including rice, pulse and edible oil at subsidised prices to ease their sufferings, she said.
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