Call for talks by parties lacks heart
The call for dialogue by the feuding parties to resolve the ongoing political crisis lacks heart, Justice Muhammad Habibur Rahman, chief adviser to the 1996 caretaker government, said yesterday.
“We as a people have a propensity for being garrulous, but have failed to develop the art of negotiation,” he said in an address to the 15th convocation of Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB).
The ongoing political turmoil will die out after some time, and one should not despair in this period of transition, said the convocation speaker.
Held at the capital’s Army Stadium, the convocation was attended by 1,955 students from business administration, science and engineering and social sciences programmes.
Rahman, who has also served the country as the chief justice, called upon the graduating students not to shy away from politics, saying any nation aspiring to walk the path of progress needs healthy politics.
Unfortunately, he said, the educational base of the country is very weak, with 90 percent of the total workforce having education below the secondary level. The quality of science and mathematics education is far below the global standards.
Terming the academic quality at public universities deplorable, he said Dhaka University, considered the country’s premier seat of higher education, stands near the bottom in the world ranking of 6,000 universities.
The universities are of local standards, not even national, and fall far short of global standards, said Rahman.
There are 79 private universities in the country, many of which even lack a campus, a library and a laboratory, he said, but the government has a lenient attitude towards them apparently for the sake of partisan and business interests.
Rahman said a civilised society should have a uniform education system, but Bangladesh has a general, an English-medium and a madrasa system.
Prof M Omar Rahman, vice-chancellor of IUB, conferred the degrees on the graduates.
IUB Founding Trust Chairman Saifur Rahman and IUB Trustee Board Chairman Rashed Chowdhury, among others, spoke on the occasion.