A Timely Manifesto to Build a Developed and Smart Bangladesh

987

Published on January 1, 2024
  • Details Image

Hiren Pandit:

Awami League has announced its election manifesto with the slogan ‘Smart Bangladesh: Development is visible, employment will increase this time’ ahead of the 12th National Parliament elections on December 27. In the manifesto announced by Awami League, a total of 11 issues have been given special importance, including creating new jobs, bringing the price of goods within the purchasing power, spreading democratic practices, ensuring the accountability of law-and-order forces, increasing efficiency in the financial sector, making healthcare affordable, building a smart Bangladesh based on modern technology. The manifesto promises a money supply and banking system.

It states that the main means of controlling money supply and inflation will be the use of policy interest rates. Credit provision will be expanded for self-employment of employable trained youth. Import and export trade will be balanced, which will reduce uncertainty in the supply of foreign exchange. It will be ensured that strict laws are enforced to recover defaulted loans and that banks keep the prescribed reserves in this regard. Economic development will continue the importance of the private sector and Awami League will use the opportunity of joint investment of the public and private sectors in reasonable cases. As well as taking effective action against money launderers; It has been promised to eliminate bribery and corruption at all levels of the state and society, prevent unearned income, punish debt-tax-bill defaulters and corrupt persons through the judicial system and confiscate their illegal money and property.

Awami League has promised to bring down the poverty rate to 3 percent by 2041 by eradicating poverty and reducing inequality. The manifesto also called for extending modern urban facilities to every village under the My Village My Town program. If the government is elected and formed in the previous sequence, every village will be modernized by expanding the market of quality consumer goods including improved roads, communication, clean water, modern health care and medical treatment, quality education, improved sewage and waste management, electricity and fuel supply, computer and high-speed internet facilities, electrical appliances.

Ensuring the continued provision of all city facilities; Awami League has also said that self-employment measures will be taken in villages to reduce the tendency of village youth to move towards cities. At the same time, it has been said to involve the youth and youth in the transformation and development of the country. Expansion of employment opportunities for capable, qualified youth and youth, training of 3.1 lakh people in district and upazila and support program for their self-employment will continue. The manifesto also said that the government would continue to provide support and subsidies for agriculture as well as investment support in agricultural inputs to increase agricultural production.

Usable agricultural machinery will be made readily available and accessible. Subsidy on agricultural machinery will continue. Commercial agriculture, biotechnology, genetic engineering robotics, artificial intelligence, and nano-technology including the development of rural non-agricultural sector and suitable strategies will be adopted to deal with globalization. Special emphasis will continue to be placed on the modernization of agriculture and the development of agricultural research facilities. Livestock productivity to be increased by 1.5 times by 2028 in the fisheries and livestock sector.

Loans on easy terms, necessary subsidies, technical advice and policy support have also been proposed to increase self-employment and eradicate poverty through the establishment of commercial dairy, poultry and fish farms. One of the main goals of the Awami League is to create employment opportunities for the more than two million people who join the labor force of the country every year with the aim of industrial development. To achieve this, 150 Special Economic Zones are being developed. The industrial sector will be developed by setting up new industries.

Awami League brought forward the slogan of building a Smart Bangladesh in its December conference last year. Bringing people to the side of Smart Bangladesh and taking public opinion on their side. This plan was fulfilled by announcing the election manifesto. This year’s manifesto aims to maintain the continuity of the sector-wise economic development that has taken place in the last 15 years and make it sustainable in the next 5 years. So that the people of the country get the benefits and make Bangladesh a welfare state, the goal of the father of the nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, for the liberation of Bengalis, in all fields including socio-economic, cultural, and everyone to take it seriously, as a spirit.

One of the goals of the election manifesto is to Smart Bangladesh by 2041. Delta Plan or 100-Year Delta Plan. There are also plans to prepare for the challenges of the fourth industrial revolution. Awami League’s vision is to build a ‘Smart Bangladesh’ by 2041 if it can form a government again. Smart Bangladesh will be based on smart citizens, smart economy, smart government, and smart society. As well as transforming every village into a city.

Along with creating skilled citizens, and ensuring smart facilities for the countrymen with a smart economy, smart education, and smart industrial policy. The country is moving towards Smart Bangladesh through the construction of Digital Bangladesh. During the last 15 years of rule of Awami League, the economy of Bangladesh has been very appreciable. But some allegations of irregularities, corruption, looting and money laundering have made those achievements questionable.

Bangladesh has been a ‘role model’ of development to the world under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the 15 years of people’s consideration, Bangladesh requests to maintain the benefits of LDCs until 2026 due to the transition to low-middle income countries. Many mega projects have been implemented, Padma Multipurpose Bridge, Dhaka Metrorail, Commencement of Third Terminal of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport, Dhaka Elevated Expressway, Rooppur Nuclear Power Project, Karnaphuli Tunnel, Matarbari Deep Sea Port, Matarbari 1320 MW Power Project, Payra Port, Payra 1320 MW Power Project, Rampal Power Project, Banshkhali Power Project.

There are initiatives to transform the youth into skilled manpower, ensure employment as well as accelerate the progress of prosperity and 2041 Smart Bangladesh. The implementation of past promises and development of 15 years were also highlighted in the meeting of the Prime Minister’s manifesto presentation on December 27. The title of Awami League’s 2008 manifesto was Charter for Change, 2014 ‘Bangladesh is moving forward’, and 2018 manifesto was titled ‘Bangladesh on Prosperity and Progress’. It contained 21 special pledges.

Appropriate policies and programs will be undertaken to attract the entrepreneurial class. Small, medium and cottage industries, handloom and silk industries will be preserved and competitiveness enabled for employment expansion. Banarasi and Jamdani will be encouraged. Leather and jute products will be diversified and efforts to make these industries profitable will continue. Initiatives of the jute industry will be encouraged. Special initiatives for the development of blacksmiths, potters and potters will continue. Incentives will be given in this sector as per requirement.

Awami League has brought out a manifesto about the development of the last 15 years in the power sector. It has been informed to adopt a long-term plan to ensure uninterrupted and quality electricity and energy supply and to increase the power generation capacity to 40,000 MW by 2030 and 60,000 MW by 2041. A promise of 10,000 megawatts of electricity generation from environmentally friendly fuels has been made.

Awami League also said that the program of modernizing the grid for the transmission of electricity produced by renewable and nuclear power plants will be greatly increased. To ensure gas supply in the northern and western regions of the country, the supply of gas and LPG will be greatly increased. Awami League government has announced the implementation of a comprehensive program in the last 15 years to build a secure communication system to achieve Vision 2041. Development of waterways, roads, railways and airspace will continue and promises to improve safe communication systems from the capital to the villages. Measures to enact the Safety Roads Act have been discussed to ensure safe travel on the roads.

It is said in the manifesto that the Awami League government has accepted and implemented various mega projects in three terms. It is hoped that the implementation of these projects including the Padma Bridge, a symbol of pride and pride of the nation, will bring benefits to the economic development of the common people. Marine Research Institutes have been established for the proper utilization of marine resources for socio-economic development. Arrangements have been made to extract marine resources, oil, gas, minerals, and fish resources. Seaports and deep seaports have been constructed; Which has created opportunities for business expansion. MDGs have been implemented with great success as part of the MDGs Achieving and SDGs Implementation Strategy (2016-30).

Implementation of sustainable development i.e. in the implementation of SDGs, the implementation has been successfully started in all the necessary areas including housing, food security, education, health care, clean water, sanitation facilities, reduction of child and maternal mortality, and ensuring equality. During the announcement of the manifesto, it was also informed that taking into account the global situation in the field of socio-economic development, steps are being taken to innovate and implement new strategies.

Awami League President Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has called for voting by boat, promising to build a developed, prosperous, and smart Sonar Bangla in the election manifesto of Awami League. Addressing the countrymen, she said, “Whatever mistakes she made in the course of government management in the past 15 years, she gave credit to the people for her success and all the achievements.” She called for forgiveness of past mistakes. She promised to learn from past mistakes and conduct future activities according to people’s expectations.

Sheikh Hasina mentioned these at the manifesto announcement ceremony for the 12th National Parliament Election. Awami League President Sheikh Hasina pointed out that despite having sincerity and dedication, she does not claim that we have always been 100% successful in running the government. However, the Bangladesh Awami League does not believe in the politics of words. Awami League tries to implement what it says. The implementation of election manifestos of 2008, 2014 and 2018 is proof of that. But now and then man-made, natural, and global obstacles slow us down. From 2013 to 2016, we had to move forward by countering BNP-Jamaat’s efforts to spread arson and militancy. Since 2009, several natural disasters have been faced. The biggest blow came in 2020 when the global coronavirus pandemic broke out. The pandemic devastated economies and health systems around the world. On review, it can be said that the election manifesto of the Awami League party is realistic. In recent times, public importance issues have prevailed.

Awami League’s new manifesto promises to establish a correlation between market prices and income. Apart from this, the commitment to take the country to the upper-middle income category by 2031 and to build a developed-prosperous and smart Bangladesh by 2041 has been reiterated. Awami League President Sheikh Hasina declared her faith on controlling inflation while officially announcing the manifesto. She also laid great emphasis on monetary policy to control inflation.

She expressed hope that if the monetary policy is implemented successfully, it will be possible to control the price of goods in the domestic market. Besides, she said that everything that needs to be done will be done to bring the prices of daily commodities to a bearable level. Rising prices of daily commodities are a serious problem for the poor and low-income people. Awami League’s election manifesto has also hinted at taking various timely steps to ensure their social security. Much has been said about ensuring social security for the middle-class, lower class and low-income people.

The prices of daily commodities are increasing gradually. Commodity price controls alone are not enough to restore stability in the domestic market. In the election manifesto of Awami League ahead of the 12th National Parliament elections, the words of low-income marginalized and underprivileged people have come up again and again. The rights and facilities of underprivileged people have come up. The issue of empowering the elderly, socially disadvantaged people and even ethnic minorities has come up. It is especially important to form a separate commission for people belonging to ethnic minorities. This pledge will play an important role in empowering the disadvantaged communities of the country. Awami League’s election manifesto giving additional importance to the agricultural sector is also a significant aspect.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said that after coming to power, various initiatives will be taken to increase agricultural subsidies and increase the production capacity of farmers. Agriculture is the main driving force of the country’s economy. With the development of agriculture, the wheels of the economy will become more dynamic. However, the manifesto also mentions plans for the development of other industries. Above all, the topic of increasing the facilities and socio-economic development of marginalized and backward people has come up again and again.

The manifesto promises the efficient use of technology to increase the rights and opportunities of the people and the development of the backward people of the society. For the development and expansion of the industry, the issues of ensuring workers’ rights, setting up green factories, establishing rights and safety at workplaces, increasing facilities in the industrial sector, and increasing employment have come up. In the expansion of industry, the issue of employment growth has gained added importance. The unemployment rate is also a big problem in the country along with inflation. The topic of employment has come up in the election manifesto considering the various problems faced by the youth at different levels of society due to lack of employment.

A commitment has been made to provide training and financing to increase youth employment. In this regard, emphasis has been laid on the SME and MSME sectors. Increased focus on these two sectors is certainly positive for employment generation and expansion. The current government has taken various initiatives to empower women in the country. However, women workers still face many obstacles. In the election manifesto of Awami League, importance has been given to increasing the facilities of women workers. Glimpses of plans for improving the livelihoods of rural women, capacity building and enhancing their technical skills. Overall Bangladesh Awami League has announced an inclusive election manifesto.

Through the election manifesto, the ruling party has prioritized the needs of the common people. Inflation has made life miserable for the common man. The election manifesto has been framed with an emphasis on price control. The people of the country look to politicians for solutions. Awami League has been able to understand people’s aspirations. Their plans are far-reaching realistic and timely to include the underprivileged and low-income people.

As the main driving force of the country has been given importance to the agriculture sector, so also importance has been given to other sectors of industry. Not only that, emphasis has been placed on setting up green factories keeping in mind the issue of climate change. It is said that corruption and lack of good governance are the two poisons of the country’s economy. The government already has a zero-tolerance stance and a pledge to fight corruption.

This time, the manifesto expressed the conviction to take more contemporary steps to establish good governance. Inflation has become a major challenge for the economy. Optimism has been expressed to prevent irregularities in the financial sector and consolidate and streamline the banking system to control inflation. If that can be done, then inflation control will not be difficult. In this manifesto, the needs and aspirations of the common people have been expressed. Dealing with inflation and various obstacles in the economy is a big challenge. But the manifesto hints at more timely developments and steps after the elections. Common people can get involved with the development philosophy of Awami League in this manifesto.

When the elections came, the war of liberation, Bangladesh and a circle of anti-development became active by spreading the web of conspiracy. They enter the field by using tricks or rigging or through the back door to gain power. If he is not successful, he jumps on the people in the spirit of revenge. Intimidate the general public through arson, vehicle burning, bombing, sabotage, or terrorist acts. This time was no exception. This time, they are also shaking hands from abroad. Right now, Bangladesh is standing in a transitional period. The country is going to join the ranks of developing countries from the list of least developed countries.

This passage is like an honor on the one hand, but also a huge challenge on the other. The government formed by the January 7 election must have the ability to face this challenge. Only the Awami League can face this challenge and take the country to new heights. By the hands of Bangladesh Awami League, the bearer of the spirit of the liberation war, Bangladesh will be established as a high-middle-income country by 2031 and a developed-rich smart Sonar Bangla by 2041. She once again called on us to serve you by voting for the electoral symbol of Bangladesh Awami League. She mentioned that if you vote for us, we will give you development, peace, and prosperity.

Writer: Columnist and a researcher.