Monday, 17 June, 2024, Reg No- 06
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Sheikh Hasina’s homecoming

Exploring the interrelationship of democracy and development

Published : Friday, 17 May, 2024 at 12:00 AM  Count : 271

Exploring the interrelationship of democracy and development

Exploring the interrelationship of democracy and development

On May 17, 1981, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina made her long-awaited homecoming to Bangladesh after an inadvertent exile abroad since the tragic events of August 1975. Every year on May 17, "Hasinas Homecoming Day" is honoured by all Bangladesh Awami League leaders, supporters, and common people, marking a pivotal moment in the nations history. The significance of this day lies in the tumultuous events surrounding the survival of Sheikh Hasina and her sister Sheikh Rehana, daughters of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, amidst the turmoil of assassination attempts and political upheaval.

The attack on August 15, 1975, targeting Juba League leader Sheikh Fazlul Haque Moni and the family of Bangabandhus brother-in-law, Serniabat, shook the nation to its core. Sheikh Hasina and Sheikh Rehana, miraculously surviving the onslaught, were thrust into a world of darkness and uncertainty. Their safety became paramount as threats against Bangabandhus blood heirs loomed large. The harrowing tale of their six-year-long exile and the challenges they faced before returning to Bangladesh in 1981 is a narrative that transcends fiction.

The impact of Sheikh Hasinas return reverberates through the annals of Bangladeshs development, social fabric, political landscape, economic trajectory, diplomatic relations, and cultural identity. Her leadership, exemplified by the Ekla Chalo Niti forged in the crucible of personal tragedy, has been instrumental in steering the nation towards progress and prosperity.
Exploring the interrelationship of democracy and development

Exploring the interrelationship of democracy and development

Today, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina commands universal respect and admiration as a stateswoman of unparalleled stature. Much like her father, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, she is hailed as a beacon of democracy and a transformative figure in Bangladeshs history. Her visionary leadership has propelled Bangladesh from the ranks of underdeveloped nations to that of a burgeoning developing country, with ambitious plans to achieve developed status by 2041.

Under her stewardship, Bangladesh has made remarkable strides in various spheres. The successful implementation of long-awaited border agreements, the landmark construction of the Padma Bridge despite challenges, and the formulation of ambitious development plans such as the Centenary Delta Plan are testament to her unwavering commitment to national progress.

International recognition of Sheikh Hasinas leadership is widespread. Renowned economist Amartya Sen has attributed Bangladeshs economic transformation to her astute governance. The global accolades she has received, including the Champion of the World award from the United Nations Environment Program, underscore her contributions to sustainable development and environmental stewardship.

Moreover, Sheikh Hasinas compassion and leadership shine brightly in the face of humanitarian crises. Her handling of the Rohingya refugee issue, characterized by magnanimity and empathy, has garnered praise from international quarters, showcasing Bangladeshs commitment to upholding human rights and dignity.

In the realm of global leadership, Sheikh Hasinas influence extends far beyond Bangladeshs borders. Her adept diplomacy and statesmanship have elevated her to the status of a role model for leaders worldwide. Forbes magazine and the World Economic Forum have lauded her for her effective management of crises, including the COVID-19 pandemic.

Beyond her remarkable diplomatic achievements and transformative governance, Sheikh Hasinas leadership has had a profound impact on various sectors of Bangladeshi society. One notable area of focus has been education. Recognizing the pivotal role of education in national development, her government has implemented sweeping reforms to improve access to quality education for all citizens. Under her tenure, Bangladesh has made significant strides in reducing the gender gap in education, with increased enrolment and retention rates for girls at all levels of schooling. Investments in infrastructure, teacher training, and curriculum development have enhanced the overall quality of education, equipping the youth with the skills and knowledge needed to thrive in the modern world.

Healthcare is another priority area for Sheikh Hasinas administration. Recognizing the importance of a healthy population for sustainable development, her government has launched ambitious initiatives to strengthen the healthcare system and expand access to essential services. Investments in healthcare infrastructure, including the construction of new hospitals and clinics, have improved the delivery of healthcare services to rural and underserved communities. Furthermore, innovative programs targeting maternal and child health, immunization, and disease prevention have led to significant improvements in health outcomes across the country.

Furthermore, Sheikh Hasinas leadership has fostered a vibrant cultural renaissance in Bangladesh. Through initiatives to preserve and promote Bangladeshi heritage and traditions, her government has revitalized the cultural landscape, celebrating the rich diversity of the nations artistic and cultural expressions. Investments in cultural institutions, festivals, and creative industries have not only enriched the cultural fabric of Bangladesh but also contributed to the nations soft power and global reputation.

Moreover, Sheikh Hasinas commitment to inclusive and sustainable development extends to environmental conservation and climate change mitigation. Bangladesh, one of the most vulnerable countries to the adverse impacts of climate change, has been at the forefront of global efforts to address this existential threat.

Under her leadership, Bangladesh has adopted innovative strategies to adapt to climate change, including the implementation of resilient infrastructure projects and the promotion of renewable energy sources. Sheikh Hasinas advocacy for climate justice on the international stage has earned her widespread acclaim and recognition as a global leader in environmental stewardship.

Sheikh Hasinas happiness and sorrow are tied to the larger affairs of the world, because she is Bangabandhus daughter.  On the other hand, according to Vishwakabis thinking, Sheikh Hasina is not only an individual, but an integral part of the universe. She has to stand far away, she has to be placed in the background of the past.  Evaluation is essential.  He is the scriptwriter of the overall transcendental aspirations of man.  His engrossed consciousness is sometimes stirred by terrible dreams and struggles, sometimes plunged into deep intimacy-dreams, sometimes soaked in love, and sometimes becomes a blood-thirsty warrior through courage or treachery.

The writer is Deputy Director, retirement benefit board, Ministry of Education

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