Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today urged the countrymen to make collective efforts for building the nation in a way so that no Bengali bows down his or her head to anyone in the globe.
“I have a request to the entire nation to make united efforts to build the country in such a way that no Bengali would have to bow head down in the world. We will march ahead with keeping our heads high in a developed and prosperous country,” she said.
The Prime Minister said this while handing over “Swadhinata Purashkar-2022” (Independence Award-2022), the highest national civil award of the country, to nine distinguished persons and two organisations.
She distributed the award in person in a ceremony held at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) at Tejgaon here.
The Prime Minister said that Bangladesh has been progressing ahead at an indomitable pace confronting various hurdles.
She said that her government has made it possible to continue the journey towards the advancement even during the Coronavirus pandemic.
“We have to keep continuing the journey of advancement,” she added, hoping that the journey towards the light would be continued and people would get an improved and prosperous life.
Sheikh Hasina said that the nation which had given blood for language and the country’s independence cannot be suppressed.
The Prime Minister said her government’s target is to reach benefits of the independence to every doorstep by keeping intact the dignity of the independence.
She asked all concerned to find out the people who have been serving the people and working for the welfare of the mankind and the country at their own initiatives at the grassroots level.
“Assets worth crore of taka cannot give the satisfaction which one can get by serving the people,” she added.
After handing over the independence award to the recipients, she said that she felt honoured by distributing the award in person after a long time due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Prime Minister however handed over the independence award to the two living freedom fighters, Sirajuddin Ahmed and Abdul Jalil, after coming down from the stage.
Sheikh Hasina later took part in a photo session with the recipients.
She greeted the award recipients who got recognition for their glorious and outstanding contribution to their respective fields.
Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Haque was present at the function.
Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam moderated the function and read out the citations with brief life sketch of the recipients.
Among the recipients, Valiant Freedom Fighter Ilias Ahmed Chowdhury, Martyr Colonel Khandaker Nazmul Huda (Bir Bikram), Abdul Jalil, Siraj Uddin Ahmed, late Mohammad Sahiuddin Bishwas and late Sirajul Haque have been nominated for the award in the “Independence and Liberation War” category.”
Besides, Professor Kanak Kanti Barua and Professor Md Kamrul Islam have been given the award in the “Medical” category while late architect Syed Moinul Hossain has been nominated in the “Architecture” category.
In addition, the Power Division has been given the award for their success for bringing Bangladesh under cent percent electricity coverage while the Bangladesh Wheat and Maize Research Institute has been provided the award in the ‘Research and Training’ category.
Of the recipients, Professor Kanak Kanti Barua expressed his gratitude to the government for the recognition.
Each recipient received a gold medal, a certificate and a cheque of honorarium.
The government has finalized the names of 10 noted personalities and one institution for Independence Award-2022 for their glorious and remarkable contributions to the nation on March 15 last.
Later, the name of Amir Hamza, who was nominated for the award in literature category, has been dropped amidst controversy.
The name of the Power Division has been nominated for the Independence Award-2022 on Wednesday for its contribution to bring Bangladesh under cent percent electricity coverage that has helped boost the country’s socio-economic development.
The government has been giving this award every year since 1977 on the occasion of Independence Day on March 26.