Dhaka, 1 September, Abnews: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today asked the public university students to uphold the dignity of the universities, saying that indiscipline will never be tolerated there.
“The students must uphold the dignity of their universities and indiscipline will never be accepted there … all will have to move by maintaining the rules (of the universities),” she said.
The prime minister said this while inaugurating the 7th March Bhaban of Rokeya Hall of Dhaka University constructed in memory of the historic March 7 speech of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
The premier said there is an autonomy at the public universities and there are also rules that the universities will be run through their own income.
“But the students of such universities should think that the higher education is provided in Bangladesh at the lowest cost and the government is bearing cent percent expenditure in this regard,” she said.
“I don’t know whether such practice exists in any other country of the world, because we always inquire about the international universities,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina said while pursuing study, the students will have to behave by maintaining rules of their educational institutions. “We and the nation expect such behaviour from the students,” she said.
“We want their living standard be improved on all sides and they take the country forward further,” she added.
Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid and University Grants Commission Chairman Prof Abdul Mannan were present at the function as special guests, while DU Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Aktaruzzaman was in the chair.
DU Pro-VC (admin) Prof Dr Muhammad Samad, Pro-VC (education) Prof Nasrin Ahmed, Treasurer Prof Dr Kamaluddin, Rokeya Hall Provost Professor Dr Zinat Huda also spoke.
Ministers, parliament members, national professors, academics, political leaders and other dignitaries were present on the occasion.
Earlier, Lipi Akter and Sraboni Islam, two students of Rokeya Hall, adorned the prime minister with “uttoriyo”.
Students of the Department of Music and Dance performed songs and dances at the function projecting the Liberation War spirit.
Earlier, the prime minister opened the building by unveiling of its plaque. She also visited the museum and signed the visitors’ book The building constructed at a cost of Tk 88 crore will accommodate 1000 students, and it has a five-storey administrative block, service block and museum.
In the museum, the 7th March speech, rare photographs of the armed struggle of the Bangalees and information regarding the participation and contributions of the women to the liberation war were placed.
The prime minister hoped the new generation would take forward the country and materialise Bangabandhu’s dream of establishing a hunger and poverty-free Sonar Bangla being imbued with the spirit of the Liberation War.
She reiterated her commitment to making the country’s education system time-befitting one to build a knowledge-based nation.
“We want to make the country’s education system more time-befitting to keep pace with the world … we want the quality of our education be improved. To achieve the goal, we’ve established 12 science and technology universities in the country,” she said.
Noting that no country can be freed from poverty without education, Sheikh Hasina said the money that the government is spending on education is investment, not expenditure.
“We were making our best efforts and there is a limitation of our resources. Despite that I think the money that we are spending on education is investment, not expenditure,” she said.
The prime minister said her government is establishing universities and medical colleges in all districts so that the students could get higher education by staying their homes.
“We’re also setting up specialized universities to create skilled manpower in the country,” she said, adding that the government has taken steps to make the education system multifaceted.
She said the government is creating education scope for the students and employments for them. “That’s why the country is advancing,” she also said.
The premier also elaborated her government’s various steps for development of education that included providing free textbooks among the students up to the secondary level, reaching stipends of primary school students to their mothers through mobile phone and setting up education assistance trust fund.
Recalling the rich contributions of Dhaka University to all movements of the country, the prime minister said the country’s premier university was the focal point of all movements.
“All movements of the country had started from the university and the dignity of this university before us unique and exceptional,” said Sheikh Hasina, also a former student of the university.
In this connection, the prime minister spelled out her government’s initiatives for the development of the university.
The premier asked the students to keep their educational institutions neat and clean and maintain austerity in using electricity.
Sheikh Hasina recalled with profound respect the outstanding contributions of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to rebuild war-ravaged country and his epoch-making steps for development of education sector.
“He (Bangabandhu) presented a universal and knowledge-based education policy to the nation by giving the highest priority to education. He made girl education free up to class eight and nationalized 36,165 primary schools,” the premier said.
Noting the bold and uncompromising leadership of Bangabandhu in the Liberation War, the Language Movement, the six-point movement, 11-point movement, the prime minister said Father of the Nation realized that hopes and aspirations of the Bangalees will be fulfilled only achieving independence.
“So he authored the greatest epic of the Bangalees in the historic Suhrawardhy Udyan on March 7 in 1971. He said in his time-winning speech before one million freedom-loving people — the struggle this time is for our freedom, the struggle this time is for independence,” she said.
The prime minister said the speech was not a written one, rather Bangabandhu performed the victory song from his self-realisation. This time-winning speech is an outcome of dream, pursuit, struggle and sacrifice of his long political life, she added.
“The 19-minute speech inspired the Bangalees in the main mantra of independence which is rare in the world history and for this, it is the world’s greatest speech,” she said.
The premier said Bangabandhu was a student of the Law Department of Dhaka University. He was expelled from this university for his direct involvement in the fight for realizing the demands of the class four employees of the university, she said, adding but he was firm in realizing their rights.
Sheikh Hasina said the 7th March Bhaban constructed in memory of Bangabandhu’s historic March 7 speech is a symbol of the history and heritage. Besides it’s an addition of new dimension to spread education, she added.
The prime minister said she became happy to know that there are a five-storey administrative block, service block and museum. “This hall will help mitigate the residential problem of the female students,” she said.
Wishing the success of Dhaka University, the prime minister said she feels proud as a former student of the university and a resident of Rokeya Hall where the 7th March Bhaban has been constructed.
She, however, expressed her sorrow as she could not complete her study at the university as she went to Germany 15 days before the brutal assassination of Bangabandhu.
“I got enrolled to the master’s at Dhaka University but I could not complete my study as I went to Germany along with my husband 15 days before Bangabandhu’s assassination and this sorrow exists in my mind and will remain forever,” she continued.
The prime minister expressed gratitude to Dhaka University for conferring a honourary degree on her and sought cooperation from all to take the country forward further. - BSS