Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said the government is working to transform Bangladesh Army into a time-befitting, technologically well-equipped and modern force.
She said after assuming office her government established military units including the new infantry divisions, brigade unit and training institutes for overall development of the army, reports BSS.
The prime minister said this while addressing a programme as chief guest at the parade ground of Bangladesh Military Academy (BMA) in Chattogram, marking the President Parade 2019 of the 77th BMA Long Course.
The premier said army should always be well-trained and equipped with modern technologies. In addition, she said, her government has ensured inclusion of women in the force.
Sheikh Hasina asked cadets to respect their seniors and take special care of subordinates. “You have to remain alert while discharging duties,” she said.
“Our armed forces have been working at various UN missions with due competence and their role is lauded everywhere,” she prided.
Noting that the day was a memorable one for the academy, the prime minister said in her speech that trainees from Bangladesh as well as friendly countries such as Saudi Arabia, Palestine and Sri Lanka were commissioned yesterday as lieutenants after completing the three-year course.
Greeting the cadets, Hasina said, “Necessity of army for an independent and sovereign country is immensely needed and inevitable.”
Therefore, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman inaugurated the BMA at Cumilla Cantonment in 1974 to develop the army as a trained, strong and efficient force.
She said it is the duty of all to take the country forward. “Let’s work for a developed and prosperous Bangladesh,” she told the cadets, reports UNB.
The PM continued, “We have adopted the ‘Forces Goal 2030’ in accordance with the ‘Defence Policy’ adopted by the Father of the Nation.” In line with that, the Awami League government has been taking necessary measures, including setting up a new infantry division.
She mentioned that today’s Bangladesh Army is much more developed, self-reliant, efficient and professional in terms of infrastructure, strategy and technology.
The premier said Bangabandhu Complex has been built with all kinds of modern facilities in the academy.
Besides, four-year honours and engineering degrees have been introduced in the academy whereas the duration for cadets to be commissioned has also been increased to three years from two years, she said.
Earlier, the prime minister handed out prizes among 265 promising young officers.
Of them, 234 are from Bangladesh, 29 from Saudi Arabia and one each from Palestine and Sri Lanka.
Sabir Nawaz Shaon, battalion senior under officer of the course, received the “Sword of Honour” while Md Barkat Hossain, company senior under officer, was awarded the “Army Chief Gold Medal”.
The cadets also took formal oath on the occasion.
Marking the event, Bangladesh Army arranged a parade, which the premier inspected and took salute.
Cabinet members, chiefs of the three services, lawmakers, diplomats, political leaders, distinguished personalities, and civil and military officials were present on the occasion.
On her arrival at the academy, the prime minister was received by Chief of Army Staff General Aziz Ahmed.