BSS-41 PM listens to youth aspirations, speaks about future plans

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ZCZC

BSS-41

HASINA-YOUTH-EVENT

PM listens to youth aspirations, speaks about future plans

DHAKA, Dec 13, 2018 (BSS) – Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has interacted with
a diverse group of youths and listened to their dreams, hopes and aspirations
as regards the course of future Bangladesh.

The Awami League’s research wing, the Centre for Research and Information
(CRI), organised the interaction “Let’s Talk With Sheikh Hasina” on November
23 last.

The CRI today released the recorded audio-video and text of the interactive
programme.

Following is the text:

Presenter: Dr Nujhat Chowdhury

Presenter: Welcome everyone. Let’s begin ‘Let’s Talk’ organized by Center
for Research and Information (CRRI). In today’s programme, we have amongst us
a special person, outstanding personality, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur
Rahman’s daughter, Bangladesh’s largest political party Awami League’s
President and Bangladesh’s Honourable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and we all
call her as our dear Apa. Welcome you to our programme.

Sheikh Hasina: I am delighted to see the youngsters. To me they are
children as they are of the same age group as my grandsons and granddaughters
are.

Presenter: We, the youths, are lucky to talk with you. The youths are the
future Bangladesh-the Bangladesh which you would like to build through your
relentless efforts and hard labour. How do you feel to talk with them after
coming here?

Sheikh Hasina: I am fortunate that the younger generation is in front of
me. I think that our younger generation can build Bangladesh. Not only the
today’s younger generation, but also the children who are born today will
also build the future Bangladesh. But I would like to leave a beautiful
society for them.

Presenter: I would like to know about young Sheikh Hasina.

Sheikh Hasina: I came to Dhaka first in 1952. My father was in jail at
that time. But I didn’t see him. He was sent to Faridpur for observing a
hunger strike. We returned home again. After that, the election was held in
1954. My father was a member of the provincial assembly. He brought us in
Dhaka in 1954. We mean me, Kamal and Jamal. My father was very busy. He used
to leave home early in the morning everyday and return at late night when we
were asleep.

Presenter: You felt the absence of love and affection of your father. Not
you?

Sheikh Hasina: Yes. We felt his (father) absence. Besides, I also started
missing the environment surrounding my village where my grandfather,
grandmother and other relatives were living. But that environment and family
surrounding were absent in urban life. Later, my father became a minister. At
that time we stayed in Mintu Road area. Then our life saw a little change. We
used to go out for roaming using vehicles. I got admitted to a school.

Later, my father was once again sent to jail. We had to leave the house within
a 14-day notice. We went to Nazira Bazar on Alauddin Road. It is located at old
part of the city where no vehicle can enter. Rickshaw was the only made of
transport to use. We had no vehicle. We use to move through rickshaws. Our
life was going on with ups and downs. This situation had an impact on our
mind which is – we never felt deprived. May be our father taught us in a way
that we had to accommodate ourselves with the changing situation. We also
accepted it. My schooling remained stopped whenever my father was in jail.
The school authority dropped my name from the class register as it was the
government school. Such occurrence did not take place not only once, it was
repeated several times in our life.

Audience question:

Your family was confined during the country’s Liberation War. We would
like to know about that. How did you pass the time?

Sheikh Hasina: I was always involved in politics. We, all brothers and
sisters, were also active in politics. We knew, to a large extent, about our
father’s plan of making the country independent. There was not much publicity
of the matter, but he (Bangabandhu) used to tell us what would be the
country’s flag and the national anthem. He finalized everything regarding
these before his arrest.

Everyone started taking preparation after the 7th March when the
declaration of independence came. The EPR, currently Border Guard Bangladesh
(BGB), spread out the Bangabandhu’s message of independence across the
country through wireless, just after beginning of the genocide on March 25
(night) in 1971. Immediately after that,, the Pakistani occupation force
invaded our house. A little before that, a man named Jakir Khan, our
familiar, came there. He asked me, my younger sister (Sheikh) Rehana and one
of our cousins to go out of the home. “Don’t trust them. You don’t know what
they can do,” he said and sent us out of the home forcibly. And then the
Pakistani occupation force arrested my father. After that, curfew was
imposed.

My mother and younger brothers Sheikh Russell and Sheikh Jamal were in the
house. We found our mother after returning home. We had taken shelter in
different places at that time. But at one stage, we were arrested. As I was
pregnant of my first child, it was very difficult for me to stay or take
shelter anywhere.

After arrest, we were kept at a one-storey house at old Dhanmondi, road no
18 in the city. There was nothing, even furniture, in the house but dust and
mud. The Pakistani Army provided one blanket for our whole family. There was
no food for us. We were arrested at noon and we past the whole day and night
without any food. There was no end to repression in the confinement. They
(Pakistani occupation force) used to stop power supply frequently. We had no
privacy as there was no curtain in the house. We had to pass the time in such
a situation. I gave birth to my first child in that situation. Most tragic
matter for us was that we had no ability of giving the first clothe to my
newly born son as we had no opportunity of shopping. My son was covered
somehow with the cloth provided by the hospital. A pregnant female friend of
mine, whose sister was staying in the next cabin to us after operation, gave
me some clothes.

We had to stay on damp floor in the hospital. But we never lost our mental
strength. We believed that the country must be freed and independent. Jamal
was not prepared for staying at the house of captivity. He used to say, “I
have to join the Liberation War”. One day, he really fled in a guerrilla
strategy and joined the Liberation War. It is a big matter that the country
has become independent amid huge sufferings.

But when the Pakistani Army surrendered on December 16 in 1971, we did not
get release from the confinement. Satyen Sen’s speech ‘Ruddhodhar Mukto Pran’
(closed door, free life) hunted me during the period. Joy Bangla slogan was
heard all around in the city. We also chanted the slogan from inside the
house. I, my mother and Rehana chanted the slogan while we were still
confined there.

They (Pakistani occupation force) killed people around us throughout the
day. We heard screaming, shouts and cries of the people. We, however, got
release on December 17.

During the period, actually there was no arrangement for dining in (house
of captivity). There was only a kerosene stove and a cooking pot. We used to
cook a little bit hotchpotch with some rice and pulses. None could have a
full meal. Because, we did not know what would happen when the food will be
finished. But we forgot all pains when the country was freed. It was the big
matter.

Audience question:

Honorable Prime Minister we want to know about your political life in
youth. Because, we believe that your speech will inspire the youths, who want
to do politics in the future. Thank you.

Sheikh Hasina: I was born in a political family. I was attached with
politics in such a way that I could not recall when I got involve in the
politics. I have been involved in politics since my school life. There were
many movements, including the movement for canceling the Education Commission
report. When any movement took place, I went to Dhaka University (DU) Bot
Tola escaping from school for taking part in meetings. Once, we were asked to
join students’ organization Chhatra League. So, I went to different schools
and tried to convince female students so that they joined the students’ wing
of Awami League.

We established the right of talking in our mother tongue with the Language
Movement in 1952. Afterwards, we had to write Bangla in Arabic alphabet. We
had to demonstrate against it. Then, it was finalised that Bangla would be
written in Roman alphabet. Movement was also formed protesting it.

We used to leave the school when we heard about any movement. I would like
to share an interesting story of my childhood life with you. Then strike was
going on. Our headmaster Kazi Omar Ali was very strict. I used to run away
when I saw him. But he was a good teacher and adored me. One day, we decided
that we had to take leave from the school for rest of the day. But school
authority will not do so according to our wish without any reason. The bell
was hung beside the head sir’s room. We thought how we could ring the bell.
We engaged a girl for ringing the bell and more some girls for opening the
school gate before guard understood anything. When we started ringing the
bell, the children started running away. It was very interesting that when
the children were running away, the teachers were also running to catch them.
In the meantime, we also came out of the school and joined a meeting. Then I
was in class seven. It happened just a few days back (laughing).

One day, a police officer was scolding me when I was leading a strike in
the school. We were standing outside the school gate so that none could enter
the school. But he rebuked me saying that “Do you know who am I? I can take
you to jail.” Then we visited jail in every 15 days. It was not a matter for
me to go to jail. So, I told him that I used to go to jail. Then he asked me
my name. I replied to him that our head sir knew my name and my father’s
name. You can ask him about my name.

Meanwhile, some university female students gave me a signal for leaving
the place. Then we entered the Dhaka University (DU) Rokeya Hall through the
broken part of hall’s fence. During the period, there were small buses which
were replica of the container of puffed rice popularly known as Murir Tin.
When I wanted to leave the place, police with such a tiny bus chased us. Then
we entered the Rokeya Hall climbing wall through Palashi square and now
Zahurul Haque Hall.

When I took admission to college, female students of the college and our
Chhatra League leaders were very enthusiastic. At first, I was made general
secretary of the college unit. We used to visit different colleges for
organisational purpose. That time, annual election was held at every college.
The central committee of Chhatra League asked me to contest the election in
college. But my mother barred me from contesting poll as my father was in
jail following placing six-point charter. Most of the leaders of our party
(Awami League) were confined in jail. It was very risky to contest the poll
such a circumstance. My college was a government one. So, the school
authority could not accept that Sheikh Mujib’s daughter would be elected at a
government college through election. It was not only the college authority’s
stance, but also the government’s stance as Abdul Monem Khan was the then
governor and Ayub Khan was the president of the then Pakistan.

As our movement was against the military dictator Ayub Khan, they did not
want my victory in the poll. My mother was very anxious about me. She told
me, “If you could not win the poll, people would think that the six points
have no acceptance”. On the other hand, the government thought that if I was
elected in the election it will be proved that the general people and
students accepted the six points. My mother used to ask me for withdrawing
the nomination paper. But my college friends and organization’s activists
requested me not for withdrawing the paper. They told me, “You will win. Why
will you not vie in the election? I was in such a dilemma.

My mother was very strict. My mother threatened me that she would stop
providing me money if I contested the election. However, the election was
held. It was a landslide victory for me. I bagged about double votes than my
two opponent candidates’ cumulative votes. Pictures of those days are still
in my collection. I was brought to Shaheed Minar with paper garland where I
had to deliver speech to thousands of people. My face was smeared with color.
When I stood for addressing, thousands of students were present there. There
was altar of a mango-tree on the college ground where I used to deliver
speech. But on that day I could not speak at the Shaheed Minar as I became
very emotional. My eyes were full with tears. I felt nervous when I wanted to
speak standing at the Shaheed Minar for the first time in my life. I could
not decide what I would say. I only gave thanks to all. Chhatra League
leaders asked me for saying many things. But I replied to them saying that I
could not say anything else. I requested them saying please you better tell.

When I got admission to university, the governor queried the Vice-
Chancellor (VC) Gani about my admission. The governor wanted to know “How
Sheikh Mujib’s daughter got enrolment into university?” The VC had very
strong personality. He then replied “Thousands of boys and girls admit to the
university every year. Where is the scope of looking for an individual’s
admission?”

Later, a university teacher informed me saying that “Do you know after
your admission in the university, the governor shouted at the VC, saying that
how has Sheikh Mujib’s daughter admitted into university?” Actually it was
our life.

The teachers used to adore me when my father was a minister. But when my
father was in jail they used to say oh! her father is in jail. Then they
blamed us for everything. We had to go through such hurdles. But we could
take the hurdles easily since we knew that my father is working for freedom
of the countrymen. It is the lesson that I have learnt from my mother and my
grandparents.

I was supposed to join a meeting, but my mother suddenly said, “You cannot
go to the meeting”. At that time, we had not that courage to do anything
disobeying her directives. My mother then did not do anything without saying
“You cannot go”. We had the lesson that mother’s directives must be obeyed.
But, somehow I had to protest. So, I used to go hunger strike. But, it was
better, if my grandfather would have remained present. Once, when he was
alive, there was an emergency meeting at Dhaka University. And I had to go to
there at any cost. But my mother said, “Today you cannot go out of the
house”. Then, my grandfather asked my mother and said, “Keep in mind that I
never stopped my son (Bangabandhu) from any movement. I never prohibited him.
Then why do you stop her? As she wants to go, please allow her”. My mother
also obeyed by elderly people. As my grandfather said, my mother also gave
permission to me.

Presenter:

In 1975 suddenly you had lost every one of your family except your sister.
How did you reinforce yourself after the tragic attack?

Sheikh Hasina: It was very much unexpected. And there was a fear too. My
father liberated the country. But, then the anti-liberation clique remained
always active.

As my husband was a nuclear scientist, he went to the Durham University for
his research work. He also told me to go there. Then, I was a student of
Dhaka University. I met with our vice-chancellor sir for my leave.
Bangabandhu was supposed to go to Dhaka University (on August 15). My father
would go to Dhaka University and would not I remain present!

So, I went to VC sir. My husband was also a student of the VC sir, Abdul
Matin Chowdhury. He said, “What do you say, you will go?”

I told him that sir you knew your student (Wazed) very much. He is
insisting me very much on my going. You please tell your student that I would
not go now. Rather I would go after August 15.

Then VC sir told me to phone my husband referring his name. At that time,
phone was not readily available like now. There was only one phone by which
international calls could be made and it was in my father’s bedroom. He (my
father) was sitting in his room. I told him that I wanted to make a call.
When I phoned my husband and told him referring to VC sir, I got rebuked. And
at the moment I could not quarrel in front of my father. I could not say
anything. Probably I could say something if it was different time. But I
could not say anything in front of my father. But my father was realizing
everything. He told me that did Wazed ask you to go, you should go. Then I
got very upset.

Isn’t there a picture where my father posed holding me? He wore sleeveless
t-shirt. It was my last picture with my father. Then I was crying and father
was consoling me. He told me that everything was alright. You go now. I went.
But it’s true that I was very upset as my two brothers got married few days
ago. We would be in very cheerful mood but I had to go leaving everything. I
was not so happy like others, who become happy while going abroad. My mother
also cried a lot. I left with a heavy heart.

Then I was touring across the Europe and we were in Belgium. Suddenly I
received a phone call. Bangladeshi ambassador told me that an assassination
took place in Bangladesh. After hearing the news it seemed to me that we
might have lost everything.

We were just watching my father’s picture in the country’s native-language
television channel. But we could not understand anything. We came back to
Germany. Then Bangladesh ambassador to Germany gave us shelter there. He and
his wife consoled us a lot.

He told me separately that he got information from different sources that
none of my family members is alive in Bangladesh.

I could not say anything about the situation. At that moment I felt that I
lost everything from my life. After coming to my residence (in Germany), I
saw Rehana sleeping. I also slept beside her holding her slightly with my
arms. I could not say her anything. I did not say her. And when she came to
know she also did not tell me. We were going amid such circumstances.

Then our ambassador talked with Indian ambassador (to Germany) as the then
Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was enquiring about us. Marshal Tito also
phoned us. Then we thought, we would go back to our country. Let’s see
whether we could go home or not. Then we came to Delhi. We came to know that
none remained alive back home.

Prior to that, we had a hope that my mother or little brother Russell
might remain alive. But when we met Indira Gandhi, she informed us that
nobody remained alive. She told us to stay there taking shelter. We had to
stay there for six years. In the first few years, actually we could not
believe. We did not want to believe. We said our prayers and offered munajat.
But we could not name our parents in munajat. It won’t come from inside.
Anyway, days had passed.

Audience question:

When you came back home in 1981, then what or which thing gave you
motivation? How did you get courage in the turmoil period? Didn’t you have
fear?

Sheikh Hasina: After 1975, it was a dark chapter. It can be said that we
remained confined to a house. We did not have any scope to go everywhere.
Even we did not have any scope to give our identities. We were given names.
Those names were our identities. We did not have our own identities. Then we
thought we would lead our life with the minimum things that is needed. From
there we had to learn and do everything related to household chores.
Actually, I was the elder daughter in my family. I was very idle. Quite
often, I went to sleep without taking dinner. My father used to wake me up
and feed me rice. I had a bad habit of reading books and listening to songs
by sitting. At that time, mother used to give me a cup of tea. I myself did
not work much. It’s true I was idle. And from that, we fell into such a
circumstance where we had to do everything from sweeping our rooms to every
household chore and we used to do those. At one stage, my uncle took Rehana
to London.

(When I returned to Bangladesh in 1981), I wanted to restore democracy in
the country and do something for the people. From my childhood I learned from
my father what he would do for the country and how he would build Bangladesh.
He always used to tell about his dreams. As he used to tell the story, I
thought idly sitting would not bring any result. We would have to do
something for the country. If we could not do anything, at least we would
work for the people. I decided I would come to Bangladesh.

It’s true that it was very dangerous to come at that time as killers were
not brought to justice till then. The killers made a massive carnage and even
a little child could not escape it. They passed the indemnity bill to protect
them from being brought to justice.

I lost my parents but I could not demand trial of the killers. I could not
lodge a case. Under the circumstances, returning home was a very daring
attempt. Because, many people told me that if I returned home, I would be
shot dead at the airport. Here, my thought was that I had nothing more to
lose as I lost my parents, brothers and relatives. As I lost everything, I
can also be killed. But it would not be good to remain silent being afraid of
death. And I do not want to die before my death. I want to see whether I can
do anything for Bangladesh. And I returned for that reason.

When I arrived at the airport in Dhaka, that moment was very painful. As
when I went abroad, all my family members were at the airport to see me off.
Kamal and his wife, Jamal and his wife and little Russell all saw me off. And
when I returned, hundreds of people came at the airport.

It was raining cats and dogs. Thick cloud was in the sky. At that time I
felt vacuum in my mind as I could not see those faces that I wanted to see. I
could not find them. There was a huge crowd so it took 4 hours to go to Manik
Miah Avenue from the airport. There, amidst the rain, I was told to address
before the microphone.

From there, I vowed that the carnage of August 15 could not be accepted. My
father had liberated the country. The people of this Bangladesh are poor and
ill-fated. I must do something for them. But I did not come to Bangladesh
knowing that I would have to take the charge of such a large political party.
But I returned home thinking that I would work for people as a worker of the
party. Still now I am an activist of Awami League. After becoming the
country’s prime minister, I think myself as a worker of the republic.
Whenever I do any anything better for the country, I think my father is
observing it. I never feared and I would not. I am always prepared to embrace
death.

Presenter:

Tell us something about your journey on upstream.

Sheikh Hasina: After returning to the country, when I went to Banani
graveyard. There were graves of my family and relatives in rows. But I was
never allowed to enter into 32 number residence at Dhanmondi. Even the then
government did not allow me to arrange a milad mahfil and doa for my parents.
Ziaur Rahman was in power at that time. He promised me that he would give a
big house. I said I did not need much big house. I told Zia that as my
parents had embraced martyrdom in the house, I wanted to go there and hold
milad mahfil and doa. But I was not allowed to go there.

At that period, there was a single television and radio. Falsehood and
propaganda were spread through the media. There was obstruction from the
government and even inside our party. But I succeeded to overcome it.

Audience question:

There was obstruction for you to return home when you went abroad to meet
your son in 2007. There was a rumour that if you come to home, you would be
arrested. Didn’t you fear to come back to the country after that?

Sheikh Hasina: I was in power till 2001. During my term, I did some
development works for the people of Bangladesh. But the irony was that those
works were not kept sustained. Rather the country became champion in
militancy, terrorism and corruption for five times. Then, when another
election came at the door, many hurdles arose. It was noticed that voters’
list was made enlisting 1.23 crore fake voters and the election procedure was
made in such way where the people had no more the rights of exercise their
franchise.

Meanwhile, my daughter-in-law gave birth to a child. Joy also had
gallbladder operation. I went abroad to meet them. Then, arrest warrant was
issued after lodging a murder case against me. Even after that when I wanted
to return home, they told me that I could not return home and every airline
were threatened that if they wanted to take me in their flights, the flight
would not be allowed to land at Bangladesh airports. The airlines, which I
availed to go from USA to London, were reluctant to give me boarding pass.
Then, I had argument with the airlines authorities. I told the airlines
authorities that their aircraft would go London not Dhaka. After three-hour
altercation, I got a flight for London. After reaching London, Bangladeshi
flights were reluctant to take me on boards. But I had to return to
Bangladesh. Then, I got international support. The international communities
and I gave logic that after returning home, I should face the case filed
against me. All thought that if they terrify me about cases, perhaps I won’t
return home. I said, no I will come to my country and face the cases. At
last, on international pressure, I was allowed to come to Bangladesh and I
was arrested from the airport and brought to court. From the court, I was
taken to an abandoned room which was made a prison.

I saw how to do politics and I did it. I knew that I would have to go to
jail. So, I did not have any anxiety about that. Rather, from earlier I
prepared myself and took books according to my choice with my luggage. Rehana
also phoned me to take torchlight, candles, papers for writing etc. I did
that. I took some money as I saw that my father kept some money with him when
he went to jail.

Audience question:

You have worked to uproot militancy from the country. Do you have any
anxiety over it?

Sheikh Hasina: I always wish that people of my country live in peace. When
bomb attacks occurred at 500 places simultaneously in the country, I could
not accept it. I removed unrest from the hill tracts region in my previous
term through executing the Chittagong Hill Tracts Peace Accord. But it is
totally unfortunate, by taking shelter in our country, neighboring countries
were being attacked.

I understood that the country’s socioeconomic development will not be
possible if militancy prevails. Whether we remain in power or opposition, it
is not a matter as we will raise voice in favor of the moral issues even if
we are in power or opposition. I love my country. And that is why I always
protested against these issues.

Many attempts were made to kill me. Attempt was also taken to shoot me
from front. I faced obstacles whenever I visited various regions. But I want
to mention one thing that wherever I went, I got affection from my people.
This love is my strength, my inspiration.

Today, we could control militancy in the country; it is a major
achievement.

Presenter:

We want to know about Sheikh Hasina as a person. You work so hard; do you
get any leisure time?

Sheikh Hasina: I have dedicated my life for the sake of the country’s
people. I do not have anything as my own. I sleep five hours at night. Rest
of the time, I try to complete my works as early as possible. As I know that
I have to leave anytime; may be because of bullet or grenade attack. For
this, I try to do something for the people of Bangladesh every moment.

Audience question:

If you were not involved in politics what would you like to be? What was
your aim in life as a child?

Sheikh Hasina: In my early age, I wished to be a doctor. I sat for my SSC
exam, and then I realized that I was weak in Mathematics. My friends were in
Arts group, so I also got admitted in Arts. Then I had an aim to be a
teacher. I wanted to be a primary school teacher to teach children.

Audience question:

How do you keep your body fit?

Shiekh Hasina: I cannot lead a routine life. I regularly say my prayers to
keep myself fit. I do not perform any physical exercise. Staying at the Gono
Bhaban is similar to a prisoner’s life. However, I try to go for a walk in
the morning. I walk on the rooftop. It is required to maintain a balanced
diet to remain healthy.

Audience question:

How are you as a grandmother? How is your relationship with your
grandchildren?

Shiekh Hasina: My grandchildren will answer if you ask them about that. We
play ludu, carom and chess together. They are very much fond of my cooking.
The youngest among them demands many things from me. The youngest child of
Bobby sits on my lap and orders me “You must cook”. Nothing is happier than
passing time with grandchildren in the old age.

Asking the youths the PM said I want to know the demands of the youth. If I
can know their demands it will be easier for me to formulate plans.

We always try to give opportunities to the females and the youths. Many of
them were given opportunities by us in the last couple of years. Many of them
are doing good job. But we should not show negligence towards our senior
citizens.

Audience question:

The quota system has been scraped from the government jobs. Will you
reconsider it?

Sheikh Hasina: Students went for movement to scrap the quota system. And so
the quota has been withdrawn. Some people say that meeting their demands
means being defeated. But I asserted that it does not mean being defeated
because our children demands for quota abolition. The quota system has been
removed from public service in that context. We are giving new guidelines for
freedom fighters’ children, members of indigenous communities and for
physically challenged people.

Audience question:

What kind of steps you are taking to improve the livelihood of marginal
people?

Sheikh Hasina: We want to reach development at the marginal level of the
country and we are working in this regard. The villages would no longer
remain as villages as those would be turned into towns. When any development
plan is undertaken, it is not only centered as town-based or capital-based,
rather the development of the marginal-level people is also considered. Work
is also being unleashed for the development of the communication system of
the country. We are also working for the development of the country’s haor
region. We will turn Bangladesh into a developed country in the South Asia. I
might not live until that time to see the implementation of the long-term
plan for Bangladesh.

Audience question:

How the path towards grabbing state power by the anti-liberation forces
will be stopped and when?

Sheikh Hasina: Those who do not have passion for the country and towards
the War of Liberation would never unleash development and would not to do it.
Those who are the cohorts of the defeated forces always want to push the
country backwards and we have seen the results of these in the successive
years after 1975. After assuming office in 1996, I, for the first time,
claimed “We have proved that the government is the servant of people”. If you
go through the development scenario of Bangladesh over the last 10 years, you
could see that what sort of progress we have made. The only reason for this
is that we believe in the spirit of the War of Liberation. Those who were in
the state power in the past resorted to wrongdoings and there was a
hotchpotch between the anti-liberation forces and the freedom fighters, the
pro-liberation forces.

Audience question:

When Bangladesh will be freed from corruption?

Sheikh Hasina: It is also my goal as I have conducted drives against
terrorism. Drives are underway against drugs. Later, ‘zero tolerance’ stance
will be announced against corruption. We are making all arrangements for
ensuring the livelihood of the public servants. So, after all these, is there
any necessity to indulge into corruption? It is possible to curb corruption
if everyone retracts from the unhealthy competition.

Audience question:

Message of the Prime Minister towards the youths:

You will have to love the country and its people. You will have to always
think whatever you can deliver to the country and its people rising above
personal interests. Shrugging off jealousy, you will have to make pledge that
I can do and I can ensure wellbeing of others of my own. It is not right to
engage in any unhealthy competition after seeing the fast development of
others. In the same way, you will have to have patriotism as well as love and
passion to the countrymen. If we believe in the spirit of the War of
Liberation, then not a single person would remain as neglected as basic needs
will be fulfilled for every individual. As government, we have that
responsibility to create such scope. It is also your responsibility to create
personality among yourselves, render your respective duties as citizens and
also to discharge your duties as good neighbors. If you always move ahead
with self confidence, then you will be able to deliver something to the
country, and could ensure your wellbeing also. So, there is nothing to be
disappointed. Many hurdles and obstacles will come in your lives, but if you
have strong will, then you will be able to overcome any barrier. If anyone
moves ahead with a specific goal, then no barrier will be seen or felt as a
barrier. I have been able to move forward the country in such a position only
because I have such strong will.

Our Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman said any great
achievement needs a great dedication and devotion as everything is possible
through dedication and devotion. You will also have to remain honest as if I
was not honest, then I could have not thrown challenge before the World Bank
and also could have not begun the work of the Padma Bridge. My sole decision
in this regard has taken the self dignity of Bangladesh into a different
level in the global arena. I want that you will also uphold that self
dignity. You will move further ahead the country from where we will leave
behind the unfinished tasks. I am handing over Bangladesh to your strong
hands as you are the future of Bangladesh.

BSS/PR/PSB/SAH/MKD/GM/MMN/ARS/RY/GA/MRU/SH/AR/2130hrs