Dev spree to go on despite odds
Making a vow to continue the country's development spree, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday called upon all to act cautiously keeping in mind the dangers of disasters.
"We always think the country is ours. So, the development spree will surely be continued whatever risks may arise. We will surely step forward towards the development facing everything. We have been working to pursue this goal," she said.
The PM was addressing a function marking 50 years of the Cyclone Preparedness Programme (CPP) and the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction. She joined the event from the Gono Bhaban through videoconferencing.
Hasina said Bangladesh is becoming an ideal country to counter disasters in the world due to the government's tireless efforts.
She called upon all the people concerned to work to uphold Bangladesh's global dignity as a disaster-resilient country.
Highlighting various initiatives taken by her government to reduce disaster risks, the premier said they were doing their part while the people would have to do theirs in this regard.
"People need to be careful and take some measures accordingly. While constructing houses, offices, and business establishments, you have to keep in mind that disasters such as fire, storm and flood can strike any time. So, everyone should follow the building code while constructing those to stay away from the risks."
Referring to BNP's arson attack (in 2014 to thwart the national election), the premier urged all to remain alert to man-made disasters.
She mentioned the measures taken by her government such as giving cash incentive to the people and businessmen as well as relief materials to the masses, providing treatment to the people, purchasing vaccines to minimise people's hardship and keeping the wheels of the economy moving amid the pandemic.
Hasina said her government has launched the mass Covid vaccination campaign with a target of bringing 80 percent citizens under vaccination coverage.
She called upon all to follow health protocols as anyone can become infected with Covid even after taking the vaccine.
The PM opened CPP's four units -- Druto Saradan Unit (quick response unit), Pani Theke Uddar Kora Unit (rescue from water unit), Oti Joar Monitoring O Saradan Unit (high-tide monitoring and response unit) and Khelay Khelay Durjog Prostoti Unit (disaster preparedness with fun).
She hoped that these units will help CPP accelerate disaster management work.
State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Enamur Rahman and Secretary Md Mohsin spoke on the occasion from Osmani Memorial Auditorium in the capital.
Lawmakers, government officials and other dignitaries joined the programme from the Muktijoddha Math, Cox's Bazar.
Hasina earlier unveiled the cover of a book titled "Durjog Sahonshil Bangladesh Binirmane Sheikh Hasina".
On behalf of the PM, the state minister for disaster management and relief distributed "lifetime honorary medal" to three best organisers and six volunteers, including three women, for their outstanding contribution to the field of disaster risk management.
The lifetime awardees are: organisers Saidur Rahman, AKM Hasan Al Rashid, and AJM Golam Rabbani, and volunteers Shova Rani Das, Ratna Rani Dey, Hawa Begum, Fazlul Karim, Abdul Hasim Siraj Kazi, and Md Hanif.