50th anniversary of diplomatic relations with Vietnam observed

Saturday marked the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations at the ambassadorial level between the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and the People's Republic of Bangladesh.

To commemorate the milestone, Vietnamese Ambassador to Bangladesh Pham Viet Chien and the embassy's staff visited and laid a floral wreath at the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum in Dhanmondi 32 to pay tribute to Bangladesh's Father of the Nation, the "architect of setting up the diplomatic relations between Bangladesh and Vietnam."

Representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bangladesh were also present.

"Over the last 50 years, the excellent traditional friendship between Vietnam and Bangladesh has been consolidated and strengthened based on historical similarities and shared values of independence, peace, cooperation and development. Bilateral multi-faceted cooperation in various fields has been bolstered to be more intensive, substantive and effective," said the Vietnam Embassy in Dhaka.

Trade and economic cooperation between the two economies have been constantly growing, stronger than ever before.

"Bangladesh has been the second largest trading partner of Vietnam in South Asia. Remarkably, 2021 was the first time that the two-way trade turnover surpassed $1 billion, and approached $1.5 billion in 2022, recording an impressive 75-fold growth in the last 20 years and a four-fold increase in the last 10 years," said the Embassy of Vietnam.

"Although the trade balance is still in favour of Vietnam, it is such a positive sign that Bangladesh's exports to Vietnam have exceeded $100 million for the first time in 2022."

"After five decades of walking alongside each other on the path of national construction, both Vietnam and Bangladesh have transformed into emerging middle-income nations with high sustained growth and outstanding development successes," the Vietnamese mission said.

"The phenomenal achievements in the last 50 years of Vietnam-Bangladesh diplomatic relations have created a firm basis to elevate the two nations' friendship to a new height, for the benefit of the two peoples, for peace, stability, cooperation and development in the region and over the world," it added.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

Help people in villages in cultivation activities: PM to Ansar and VDP

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today (February 12, 2023) reiterated that the country will never look back again and it will move forward to become a developed, prosperous, and smart Bangladesh.

“Insha Allah, this country will never look back again. Bangladesh is advancing and will advance more… it will be ‘Smart Bangladesh’. We will have the ‘Sonar Bangla’,” she said.

The prime minister said this while addressing the 43rd National Assembly-2023 of Bangladesh Ansar and VDP as the chief guest at the Ansar and VDP Academy in Gazipur’s Shafipur.

She said that the country was liberated with the supreme sacrifice of blood during the Liberation War.

“Today Bangladesh got the recognition of a developing country, and we want to advance further. We want to build Bangladesh as a developed and prosperous country, alongside ensuring socioeconomic progress,” she said.

People in the country will not beg to anyone, she said.

Sheikh Hasina said that the coronavirus pandemic created immense pressure on the economy at the international level, while Russia-Ukraine war caused global recession, not just in Bangladesh.

“I urge everyone to follow the footsteps of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman… do not keep a single inch of arable land unutilized,” she said.

“For that Ansar and VDP can play a special role. They can help people in the villages and engage them in various cultivation activities to produce crops and preserve those. I hope that you will contribute,” the PM added.

Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan, Public Security Division Senior Secretary Md Aminul Islam Khan, and Director General of Bangladesh Ansar and VDP Major General AKM Aminul Haque welcomed the prime minister when she arrived at the venue.

The PM handed over medals to 180 Ansar and VDP members for their outstanding contribution to their respective fields.

She also inspected the parade and witnessed a smartly-turned out contingent of Bangladesh Ansar and VDP. Later, she witnessed choreography and a cultural programme.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

BNP has no interest in presidential election: Mosharraf

BNP senior leader Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain on Saturday said their party has no interest in the presidential election.

“We do not want to comment on what this government is doing or not doing,” he told reporters at a press conference at the BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office as they sought his comment on the ruling party’s nomination for the presidential election.

The BNP leader said the purpose of their press conference was to inform the media about the attacks and obstruction by the police and the ruling party activists during their party’s countrywide march programme at the union level on Saturday.

Mosharraf, a BNP standing committee member, said they are least bothered about who is going to be the next president of the country as their main focus is now on the ongoing movement for realizing their 10-point demand, including the restoration of the government, dissolution of parliament and holding the next polls under a caretaker government.

Awami League Advisory Council Member and freedom fighter Md Shahabuddin Chuppu is set to be the next President of Bangladesh as the ruling party nominated him as the party’s presidential candidate.

A delegation of Awami League, led by party General Secretary Obaidul Quader, went to the Election Commission in the morning and submitted the nomination paper of its presidential candidate.

Md Shahabuddin, a retired district and session judge, had served as a commissioner at the Anti-Corruption Commission.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

Make more noises to make sure Rohingyas voices are heard: Gambian FM

Foreign Minister of The Gambia Dr Mamadou Tangara on Sunday called on all the people who are committed to justice and human dignity to raise their common voice to support the very “noble cause” to ensure justice for the Rohingyas.

The Gambian Minister acknowledged that there is fund crisis to run the Rohingya genocide case lodged by the Gambia at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) but expressed optimism that the countries will contribute for the noble cause.

“We need concrete action. Help us to make more noises so that their (Rohingyas) voices can be heard,” Dr Mamadou told reporters at a state guesthouse on Sunday evening.

Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen, who was present at the briefing, said they are hopeful that there would be no more genocide in the world and dignity of the people will not be compromised.

“They are very courageous people,” Momen said, appreciating the role of the Gambian government.

Dr Mamadou said the issue of the Rohingya is there to their heart and they will continue their efforts to make sure that the voices of the Rohingyas are heard and they can return to their homeland with dignity.

Make more noises to make sure Rohingyas voices are heard: Gambian FM

“We all have to work together,” said the Gambian Foreign Minister, commending Bangladesh for all the efforts they are making.

“It’s not so easy (hosting over 1.1 million Rohingyas),” he said, adding that he had the opportunity to see the situation on the ground.

The Gambian Minister said they are leaving Bangladesh with the firm commitment to continue working closely with Bangladesh.

He said the Rohingyas are eager to go back and efforts are needed to speed up the process for their repatriation.

Earlier, the Foreign Minister of Gambia Mamadou Tangara delivered "Bangabandhu Lecture" at Foreign Service Academy and held a bilateral meeting which was followed by signing of 'Joint Political Declaration' between Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen and Foreign Minister of Gambia Mamadou Tangara.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

Pabna erupts in joy at Shahabuddin Chuppu’s nomination for president

People from all walks of life brought out a joyous procession in Pabna district town at ruling party Awami League's nomination of Md Shahabuddin Chuppu, a proud son of the soil, as the 22nd president of Bangladesh.

The nomination leaves only the formality of the retired judge being declared as president on February 19th, the date set for the presidential election, with no other candidates in the fray.

District unit Awami League organised the procession in the morning from the Awami League office which ended at the same place after parading different important places.

They also distributed sweets among the local people including rickshawpullers, van pullers and shopkeepers.

Rezaul Rahim Lal, President of the district unit Awami League, said: “It’s a great day for Pabna residents.”

He also thanked Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for providing a party ticket to Shahabuddin as the next president of the country.

Md Shahabuddin was born in Pabna in 1949 and was one of the first members of Pabna district Chhatra League, Awami League’s student wing. He would eventually become the unit’s president.

In 1971, he was the convenor of the Swadhin Bangla Chhatra Sangram Parishad in Pabna, and took part in the Liberation War.

He became the president of the Pabna district Jubo League in 1974.

He was imprisoned for three years following the brutal assassination of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in August 1975. He was later appointed as the Law Ministry’s coordinator in the Bangabandhu assassination case.

In 1982, he joined the BCS (Judicial) Department, and in 1995, he was elected General Secretary of the Judicial Service Association.

He served as the chairman of the Judicial Inquiry Commission, which investigated murders, rapes, thefts, and other crimes by BNP-Jamaat alliance’s activists and leaders following the 2001 general election.

He also worked as a District and Sessions Judge and retired in 2006. He was a commissioner at the Anti-Corruption Commission from 2011 to 2016. During this period, he headed the investigation into the alleged 'conspiracy of corruption' surrounding the Padma Bridge, that cleared all government officials of the charges laid on by the World Bank, which pulled out of the project.

During the last National Council of Bangladesh Awami League, held in 2022, he served as the election commissioner.

He earned his LLB from Rajshahi University in 1975, after completing his MSc from the same institution in a different subject.

Md Shahabuddin’s wife Dr Rebecca Sultana, is a former joint secretary of the government. They have one son together.

He obtained SSC from Government Edward College and used to live near Jubilee Tank in Pabna district town.

Since 2017, he has served on the board of Islami Bank Bangladesh Limited, as an independent director nominated by Chittagong-based JMC Builders, after it completed buying more than 2 percent of the company's shares. He was last serving as vice-chairman of the board, and was part of its Audit Committee.

He was a member of the Awami League's advisory council, and following the death of H.T. Imam, served as chairman of the party's Publicity and Publications Sub-committee.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

‘We are moving forward due to the positive role of police’: Home Minister

Lauding the positive role of police in maintaining peace and order, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal has said the law enforcement agency is now a symbol of dependability and confidence to the public.

Besides, the police force has now become a friend of the people, the minister said while speaking at the 48th founding anniversary of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) on Saturday as the chief guest.

He said Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman dreamed of creating DMP, the journey of DMP started with his efforts. Today DMP has turned 48 years. DMP has 50 police stations and several units, which are always working to maintain law and order situations.

"CTTC was established in DMP under the direction of the Prime Minister following the rise of militancy. Since then the CTTC unit was able to suppress the militancy with great success," added the minister.

"Maintaining peace and order in Dhaka, home of 2 crore people, is not an easy task. But DMP has been able to provide security to the people very successfully."

Khandker Golam Faruq, commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) presided over the programme.

In his speech, he said that the capacity of DMP has increased a lot. "Strict legal action will be taken to protect the security of the people and the sovereignty of the state if any person or group commits acts of militancy, terrorism and sabotage in the future," he added.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

BNP marches from Shyamoli to Bosila to push for 10-point demand

The leaders and activists of BNP’s Dhaka North City unit on Sunday marched towards the capital's Bosila from Shyamoli to press home their 10-point demand, including holding the next general election under a non-party caretaker government.

BNP Standing Committee member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain formally inaugurated the programme at Shyamoli Club Ground around 2:35pm on Sunday.

The march ended at Bosila Saat Rasta intersection at around 4:30 pm after parading nearly a four-kilometre stretch of the road via Mohammapur Ring Road, Shia Mosque, Taj Mahal Road, Noorjahan Road, BRTC Bus Stop and Allah Karim Mosque Road.

In a brief address prior to launching the march, Mosharraf said their party has been on a movement peacefully to realise the demands of the country’s people. “That’s why people are making our every programme a success with their spontaneous participation. The country’s people no longer want to see Awami League in power."

He said the government is resorting to various repressive acts to suppress the opposition leaders and activists as it has got afraid of their ongoing movement. “But we would like to say the government will not be able to resist this movement.”

The BNP leader warned that the government would face a Sri Lanka-like fate as people are taking to the streets to ensure its fall. “People won’t spare you. People won’t forgive you if you try to hang onto cling to power by force."

Thousands of leaders and activists of BNP and its associate bodies joined the programme, carrying banners, national and party flags, festoons and portraits of the party's top leaders.

A huge number of law enforcers were deployed in the area to maintain law and order and fend off any untoward incidents

It was the first programme of BNP’s second round of the march programme in the capital.

On February 7, BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir announced a two-day fresh march programme in the capital for February 9 and 12.

As part of the programme, the leaders and activists of BNP’s Dhaka South City unit were supposed to march towards the Jatiya Press Club (JPC) from Gopibagh in the capital at 2pm on Thursday, to mount pressure on the government to accept their 10-point demand.

But the party postponed Thursday’s march programme in the capital, expressing solidarity with the victims of the catastrophic earthquake that hit Turkey and Syria.

Earlier, leaders and activists of the party’s Dhaka north and south city units observed the march programme on January 28, 31, 30 and February 1, respectively, to push for their 10-point demand.

The party also observed a march programme in all unions across the country on Saturday amid attacks and obstruction allegedly by the ruling party activists and law enforcers.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

Sports can help build a drug-free, healthy society: Khulna MP Jewel

Sports play an important role to build a healthy society and it helps youth to stay drug-free, said Sheikh Salahuddin Jewel, lawmaker from Khulna-2.

He said this at the awarding ceremony of Khulna district's eminent sports personalities for their unique contribution in the field of sports at the Guljan City premises in Labanchara, Khulna this afternoon.

He said that the athletes are shining the image of the country in the global arena through their sports talent.

The parliamentarian also said that the government is constructing many stadiums at the district and upazila levels of the country, including three mini stadiums in Khulna for the expansion of sports in the country.

Eminent educationist and former sports organiser Professor Zafar Imam, former national football stars Sheikh Md Aslam and Yunus Ali Ghazi spoke on the occasion. Former sportsmen of the district were also present at the event.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

BPL 2023: Rangpur stuns Barishal with nail-biting finish

The Rangpur Riders secured their place in the next round of the tournament with a thrilling win over Fortune Barishal in the eliminator on Sunday in Mirpur.

The match was filled with nail-biting moments as both teams fought to claim the victory. In the end, it was the Riders who emerged triumphant, knocking out their Fortune Barishal with a close four-wicket win.

As the match neared its conclusion, Rangpur found themselves needing just eight runs to secure the win. The pressure was on as the final over began, but Mahedi Hasan was equal to the task. He showed incredible composure and skill, hitting Kamrul Islam for two consecutive fours after a single in the first ball. This heroic effort ensured the Riders' victory and set them up for the second qualifier against any of the Sylhet Strikers or Comilla Victorians.

Barishal batted first and scored 170 for 3 wickets. Despite having a strong opportunity to increase their score, they failed to capitalize in the middle overs and missed out on adding more runs to the board.

In the chase, Shamim Hossain led the Rangpur Riders with a magnificent 71 runs off 51 balls, including four fours and four sixes. Rony Talukdar, the opening batsman for the Riders, also contributed a valuable 29 runs off 17 balls.

In the latter stages of the game, Nicholas Pooran and Dwayne Bravo failed to deliver as they scored only 5 and 2 runs, respectively. However, Mahedi stepped up and played a pivotal role in leading Rangpur to a thrilling conclusion. They successfully finished the match with three balls left to play.

For Barishal, Shakib Al Hasan, Kamrul, and Khaled Ahmed took two wickets each.

Earlier, Mehidy Hasan Miraz had a strong performance, scoring 69 runs off 40 balls with nine fours and one six while opening the innings for Barishal. This contribution was complimented by strong efforts from Mahmudullah Riyad and Karim Janat who scored 34 and 33 runs respectively. Despite these impressive performances, the team was unable to secure their place in the next phase of the BPL.

Barishal was only able to secure five wins in 13 matches during the league. Despite having talented players under the leadership of Shakib, their overall performance was not enough to qualify for the next phase.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

BPL 2023: Comilla take down high-flying Sylhet to make final

Comilla Victorians, the most successful team in the history of Bangladesh Premier League (BPL), advanced to the final of the current season after defeating Sylhet Strikers, who had been leading the league table for most of the tournament, with a four-wicket victory.

Before Comilla claimed victory in the first qualifier, Rangpur Riders beat Fortune Barishal in the eliminator. So, Sylhet still can reach the final if they can defeat the Riders in the second qualifier on February 14.

The Victorians earned their tenth straight win after ending their three-game losing streak at the beginning of the league.

In today's match, Comilla won the toss and chose to bowl first. They restricted the Strikers to 125 runs in 17.1 overs.

Najmul Hossain Shanto top scored 38 runs off 29 balls with four fours and one six for the Strikers. However, the other three batters next in the batting order could only add five runs to the board.

After that, Mashrafe Bin Mortaza and Mushfiqur Rahim tried to limit the damage, scoring 26 and 29 runs, respectively.

For the Victorians, Andre Russell took two wickets for 22 runs. Tanvir Islam and Mustafizur Rahman also grabbed two wickets each.

In reply, Comilla lost Liton Das early for seven, but Sunil Narine scored 39 off just 18 balls with four sixes and three fours.

Comilla lost some wickets after that as right-arm pacer Rubel Hossain displayed glimpses of his old self. But that was not enough for the Strikers to turn the table on them.

Comilla chased down the target of 130 in 16.4 overs with four wickets to spare.

It is the fourth final appearance for the Victorians, who won the titles in all three of their previous attempts.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

Rice production saw record increase to 4.4 crore mts in FY 21-22: Razzaque

Rice production in the country increased to 4.4 crore metric tonnes in the fiscal year2021-22, which broke the previous records, said Agriculture Minister Dr. Muhammad Abdur Razzaque.

Besides, in the past 14 years, rice production has increased by 29%, wheat by 37%, maize by 671%, potato 110%, pulse 328%, vegetables 645% and onion 395%, he said while addressing the eights convocation of Bangladesh Agriculture university (BAU) in Mymensingh.

The minister presided over the convocation ceremony on behalf of President Abdul Hamid, also Chancellor of the univerisity.

Due to the surprising success achieved in the agriculture sector there has been no crisis in food, he said.

He also urged the university authorities to prepare the agriculture graduates for developing climate-resilient and sustainable agricultural systems.

The agriculture minister also urged to invent climate-tolerant, high-yielding varieties of crops and modern farming methods and spread those among farmers quickly in a bid to boost agricultural production and ensure food security in the future by tackling various challenges including shrinking of land, population growth and climate change.

He also asked the graduates to be skilled to introduce use of robotics, artificial intelligence, genetic engineering, and drones in agriculture sector.

He also stressed the need for modifying the curriculum of the Agriculture Universities and modernizing it.

More than 6,000 students received degrees and 224 gold medals at the convocation.

Source: United News of Bangladesh

Nagad offers 10% discount on Biman ticket payment

Mobile financial services provider Nagad has come up with a 10 percent discount on the purchase of air tickets from the website of Biman Bangladesh Airlines.

To get the offer, the users will have to use the promo code (BGEKUSH10). Also, they can get this discount while buying air tickets from the national flag carrier's app.

On the occasion of the month of Language Movement, the campaign began on February 10 and will continue till the 21st of this month, Nagad said Saturday.

Air travellers, both domestic and international, can avail of this discount on the base fares of all tickets.

Also, Nagad has offered up to 25 percent instant cashback on payments on the purchase of products from different merchants surrounding the Valentine's Day celebration.

The campaign will run until February 28.

Source: United News of Bangladesh