FEBRUARY 11, 1972
UN REPRESENTATIVE CALLS ON BANGABANDHU
“The government of Bangladesh has nothing to hide,” comments Vittorio Winspeare-Guiccardi, UN Secretary General’s Special Representative for Humanitarian Problems, after a meeting with Bangabandhu today afternoon.
Bangabandhu has told him that even though Bangladesh is not a member of the world body, it has deep faith in the UN and the UN representative, therefore, is welcomed in the country. The Prime Minister has also invited him to see things for himself and go anywhere he likes because the government has nothing to hide.
PANCHAYAT SYSTEM INTRODUCED
The Bangladesh government has decided to introduce Panchayat system as an interim arrangement with immediate effect at the union level, dissolving the existing local councils under the Bangladesh Local Councils and Municipal Committees (Dissolution and Administration) Orders 1972.
Under the Orders, the members of the local union Panchayats would be selected from each ward by the local members of the Constituent Assembly in consultation with other local political leaders on ward basis.
The government has also launched a programme of the Gram Karmi Bahini (Village Workers Force) consisting of 40,000 young men drawn largely from among the freedom fighters with minimum ten members from each union. It will also include unemployed youths.
RECOGNITION BY BENELUX COUNTRIES
The Benelux countries, Belgium, Netherlands and Luxemburg, accord recognition to Bangladesh today. The recognition by these three countries brings the total number of countries so far to accept Bangladesh to 35.
DHAKA-MOSCOW TELEPHONE SERVICE
The Dhaka-Moscow telephone has been established and will be available for 24 hours.
ARRANGEMENTS TO BRING BACK BANGLADESHI NATIONALS FROM UK
Communication Minister Mansur Ali informs that an official team has already been sent to Great Britain to bring home Bangladeshi nationals who were anxious to meet relatives after remaining totally cut off from them for nine long months of Pakistani occupation in Bangladesh.
BRITAIN OFFERS LOAN
Britain has renewed an offer of a multi-million-pound loan to Bangladesh which was once earmarked for East Pakistan. The Pakistan government had not shown any interest in this loan. The renewed loan offer was made to Bangabandhu by the three-member British delegation which called on the Prime Minister on February 9, 1972.
SOURCES: February 12, 1972 issues of Dainik Bangla, The Daily Ittefaq, Azad, Morning News, The Bangladesh Observer and Purbodesh.