Students to Get Free Textbooks amid Global Crisis: PM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina || Photo: Collected

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina || Photo: Collected

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Saturday said although the government has imposed some austerity measures to save public money amid global crisis due to Coronavirus and Ukraine-Russia War, but it did not compromise on printing free textbooks books for children, reports UNB.

“…we did not forget children’s issues, we did not compromise on printing their textbooks, yes, we are trying to save money from other sectors (imposing austerity measures), but we’ve given special attention to printing their (children) books (textbooks),” she said.

The Prime Minister came up with the remarks while formally inaugurating the free textbooks distribution programme at her office for 2023.

She said due to the Coronavirus and Ukraine- Russia war prices of everything have gone up that forced the government to take some austerity measures in public expenditure, but it did not impose austerity in printing textbooks for children and distributing those on the first day of the new year.

She mentioned that the government has defied all obstacles including coronavirus, Ukraine-Russia war and price hike in all commodities.

Sheikh Hasina said that to make ‘Smart Bangladesh’ by 2041 the children will be provided with all facilities as they are the driving force in attaining the goal.

“We will grow our children in such a way so that they could cope in the coming days which will be technology driven and make them prepared to become skilled manpower for the upcoming fourth Industrial Revolution,” she said.

She urged all to give special attention to flourish the hidden talents of children through nourishing their curiosities.

“Keeping our eyes towards that we have to build them as worthy citizens of the country for Smart Bangladesh by 2041,” she said.

The Prime Minister said that prime aim of the government is to create technically and technologically skilled manpower through providing proper education.

“Our full population will be technologically smart, they will not lag behind,” she said.

She said if the children of the country can be built up with sincerity then there will be no force in the world that can stop the development and advancement of the country.

The Prime Minister said that from the time of Coronavirus outbreak till now, children are studying at homes as the government has taken initiative “my school is in my house” through television.

“Academic programmes have been conducted across Bangladesh through Sangsad TV. These have been run through BTV too. I think Sangsad TV can always be used by the Ministry of Education,” she said.

She also revealed that the government has a plan to launch a separate terrestrial TV channel for education.

Sheikh Hasina said those who came to power after 1975 did not take any measures to free the people of this country from illiteracy.

In 1996, Awami League formed government and framed the education commission again, she said.

She added that they started implementing a project to increase the literacy rate and learning for aged people was also incorporated in it.

She said education is the biggest tool to keep people free from poverty. “So, we took new steps to educate the entire nation and we constituted a new Education Commission.”But, the Awami League government could not implement its 5 years tenure ended before implementation, she added.

After BNP-Jamaat came to power in 2001, she said, they pushed the country back into darkness and this is the reality.

“In the 2008 election, people voted for boat, we formed the government again. Since then we have again set target how we will free the people of this country from illiteracy and since 2010 we have started distributing free textbooks,” she added.

Education Minister Dr Dipu Moni, State Minister for Primary and Mass Education Md. Zakir Hossen and Deputy Minister for Education Mohibul Hassan Chowdhoury also spoke at the programme.

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