Prime Minister and Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina on Saturday (January 7) reassured the countrymen that her party and government will always stand beside them in their sufferings, saying AL's only motto is to serve the people.
"We're always beside the people and our motto is to serve them. The Awami League government is doing everything whatever necessary to get the countrymen rid of sufferings," she said.
The premier made the remarks in her introductory speech in the first joint meeting of the AL's newly elected executive, advisory and national committee at its Tungipara Upazila office.
She also pledged to give the countrymen a beautiful life, saying the AL government and its leaders and activists always stood by the people in their needs.
The prime minister said that standing beside the people during the Coronavirus pandemic and any disaster, AL and its associate bodies proved that her party always stands by the people in their every suffering and need.
The joint meeting, as well, adopted a condolence motion on the late AL leaders prior to start of its proceedings.
Earlier, the premier opened 27 development projects and laid the foundation stone of another scheme as part of ensuring the overall development of Gopalganj.
Sheikh Hasina said all the members of the newly formed AL committee are committed to working for ensuring the socio-economic development of the countrymen and materialising the dream of transforming Bangladesh into a developed, prosperous and Smart Bangladesh by 2041.
"Our (AL's) policy is to stand beside the people in their sufferings as Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman wanted to give the countrymen a beautiful life and we're working to implement the target," she said.
Sheikh Hasina said Bangladesh achieved the status of a developing country at a time when the nation was observing the birth centenary of the Father of the Nation and the golden jubilee of the country's independence, by implementing the Vision 2021.
"We have to march ahead as a developing country. We will transform Bangladesh into a developed and prosperous country free from hunger and poverty as envisioned by the Father of the Nation within 2041 by upholding the status of a developing nation," she said.
The Prime Minister said several sub-committees led by her Principal Secretary have been working to find ways to cash in on the scopes and face the challenges as a developing country.
Mentioning that the broad band internet has reached the entire Bangladesh alongside the mobile phones and digital devices, she said that they have a target to build "Smart Bangladesh" by 2041.
"We will build a "Smart Bangladesh" in every sector such as in education, health and running the state," she added.
Mentioning that her party had assumed office in 1996 after 21 years through people's mandate and took huge programmes for the welfare of the country and its people, she said, "The people then realised that the government is their servant and it works for their welfare."
But, the people had fallen in darkness again as the BNP-Jamaat alliance came to power in 2001, she said, adding that her party was voted to power in 2008 in the general election with a huge margin and the AL government is running the state till date.
The Prime Minister said as the AL has been in power since 2009, the "Joy Bangla" slogan which was banned after the 1975 massacre has now become the national slogan while the banned historic 7th March speech of Bangabandhu has achieved international recognition.
"Awami League has brought the country's independence alongside bringing socio-economic advancement. Bangladesh has attained dignity globally in 14 years," she said.
Sheikh Hasina said the entire world has been rattled due to the economic recession arising out of the Covid-19 pandemic and Russia-Ukraine war, adding that her government is taking all possible measures so that the countrymen won't have to suffer.
The premier said her government has been importing edible oil, sugar, wheat, and maize, spending whatever money required, from anywhere in the world.
She again called upon the countrymen to bring fallow land under cultivation to ensure food security as many countries in the world are facing acute food crisis.
The Prime Minister said: "We have to grow our food. The world is facing a food crisis and many countries have shown interest in importing food from us. We can export food to those countries," she said.
She said her government will do whatever necessary to ensure food security.
The premier later visited Puber Beel under Patgati Union to witness how vegetables and other crops are being cultivated on floating beds where she once again asked the countrymen to cultivate all the fallow lands.
The Prime Minister went to Gopalganj on Friday and left for Dhaka this afternoon.
During her stay in Gopalganj, Sheikh Hasina paid rich tributes to Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman by placing a floral wreath at Bangabandhu's mausoleum at Tungipara on Friday.
Today, Sheikh Hasina, also president of the AL, paid tribute to Bangabandhu at his mausoleum along with the leaders of its newly formed committee alongside attending a joint meeting and inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of 28 development schemes.