Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday called upon the newly-commissioned army members to stand beside the people and serve the country selflessly.
“Your first and foremost vow will be to protect the country's independence and sovereignty even making the supreme sacrifice. You'll have to stand beside the people and serve the country selflessly,” she said.
The premier was addressing the President Parade marking the commissioning of the cadets of 75th BMA Long Course at Bangladesh Military Academy (BMA) Parade Ground in Bhatiari here.
Hasina said the Army is now quite different from the one a decade ago in terms of infrastructure, strategy and technology.
“The present Army is much more developed, skilled and smart one due to the combination of modern training and equipment,” she said adding, the government have enhanced the Army's capacity to a large extent alongside developing its infrastructure in the last nine years.
Noting that Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had framed the Defence Policy in 1974 to build the Army as a strong and trained force, the PM said the government prepared Forces Goal-2030 following the defence policy framed by the Father of the Nation.
She said it was a memorable day for BMA as the cadets were going to be commissioned as lieutenants on completion of three-year training for the first time.
Hasina urged them to show loyalty to their senior officers and sympathy to their subordinates.
She said the Army had been able to earn praises from all quarters by showing competence and professionalism while performing their duties at home and abroad.
The Bangladesh Army's role in the UN peacekeeping missions has been appreciated across the globe, she said, adding that the government wanted the newly-commissioned officers to maintain that success.
She said her government was working to turn the BMA into a modern institution by ensuring international standards.
Praising the Army for showing its capacity in various sectors, the PM said it recently played an important role in setting up shelter camps for displaced Rohingyas, distribution of relief and preparation of identity cards for them.
Riding an open jeep, Hasina reviewed the parade and took salute at the impressive march-past as the chief guest.
Chief of Army Staff Gen Abu Belal Muhammad Shafiul Huq and BMA Commandant Maj Gen Saiful Alam accompanied the PM.
The premier distributed awards among the best cadets for their outstanding performance in the academy.
Ministers, PM's advisers, lawmakers, the chiefs of the threes services, diplomats, top civil and military officials and guardians of the newly-commissioned officers were present.
Earlier, on her arrival at the BMA parade ground, the premier was received by the Army chief, GOC of the 24 Infantry Division Maj Gen Md Jahangir Kabir Talukdar, GOC of Army Training and Doctrine Command Lt Gen Abdul Aziz and the BMA commandant.
A total of 350 cadets, including 343 Bangladeshis, five Palestinians and two Sri Lankans, successfully completed the 75th BMA Long Course.
Battalion Senior Under Officer Sadmanur Rahman received the Sword of Honour from the PM on being adjudged the best all-round cadet in the long course. He also obtained Army Chief Gold Medal for acquiring the highest standard in military subjects.