Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has urged the Dhaka University authorities to put more emphasis on research and build skilled human resources for the country.
Dhaka University can play a pioneering role in building skilled human resources to keep pace with the world, she said.
"I urge the teachers and researchers to do more research on how Bangladesh can march forward. No achievement is possible without research," she said, addressing an international conference titled "Celebrating the 100 Years of the University of Dhaka: Reflections from the Alumni -- International and National".
The event is being arranged at the university's Nabab Nawab Ali Chowdhury Senate Bhaban with the theme "Achieving Sustainable Goals and Building a University Suitable for Fourth Industrial Revolution and Creating Skilled Human Resources".
Education was ruined at the university during the military regime, the PM said, "We hope the university will regain its lost glory. It will be the centre of learning and research. And it will illuminate the whole country."
The university has always played key roles in establishing democracy in the country, she said.
Expressing her hope that the country will overcome the pandemic, she thanked Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for giving 20 lakh vaccine doses as a gift to Bangladesh.
The PM hoped that shipment of the vaccine that Bangladesh had procured would arrive by January 25-26.
Education Minister Dipu Moni addressed the opening ceremony as a special guest and economist Rehman Sobhan presented the keynote speech.
Prof Rehman Sobhan said Dhaka University acted like an incubator for generations of political leaders before and after 1947.
It was expected that in an independent Bangladesh, the university would be a centre for learning and give birth to a new generation of leaders and scholars, he said.
"These expectations remain in some distance," he added.
In a recent global ranking of universities, Dhaka University was not among the top 1,000, he said, adding that among the universities in Asia, Dhaka University ranked the 134th.
But 10 universities in China were named among the top 100 of the world, he said.
Dipu Moni urged the university authorities to improve its standard of education following the international trends.
"We have yet to reach the international level in education and research," she said.
"The institution… played a significant role in the country's history, education, democracy, and culture. It had a role in every important achievement of Bangladesh," the education minister added.
"We have been successful as an economy and now we want to improve our higher education."
Dhaka University was established on July 1, 1921 with 12 departments, three faculties, 60 teachers, 877 students, three dorms and about 600 acres of land.
Its students and teachers sacrificed their lives in the 1952 language movement, 1969 mass upsurge, 1971 Liberation War, and 1990 anti-autocracy movement.
Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Akhtaruzzaman presided over the programme. Pro-VCs ASM Maksud Kamal and Mohammad Samad and convener of the event organising committee Prof Imtiaz Ahmed spoke.