Army to be made modern force: PM | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 12, 2011 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, September 12, 2011

Army to be made modern force: PM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina hands over National Standard to Ordnance Centre and School of Bangladesh Army at the Rajendrapur Cantonment in Gazipur yesterday. PHOTO: PID

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said her government will implement the 'Forces Goal 2030' to turn the army into an effective and modern force alongside implementing its `Vision 2021'.
She voiced the resolve while addressing a function organised for awarding National Standard to Ordnance Centre and School of Bangladesh Army at the Rajendrapur Cantonment.
The prime minister called upon the members of the Bangladesh Army to build their force as a disciplined, efficient, and modern one -- ready round the clock for protecting the country's independence and sovereignty.
She expressed the hope that the Bangladesh Armed Forces, founded by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, will uphold the dignity of the national flag across the world.
Hasina said the Ordnance Corps was first established on November 20 in 1972 at the Central Ordnance Depot, and later, this Corps was shifted to Rajendrapur on October 1 in 1977.
She said members of the Corps played a vital role in making Chittagong and Mongla seaports operative by removing numerous mines and sunken ships after the War of Liberation. The Ordnance Corps is now well established due to relentless efforts and sacrifices of its members.
The premier mentioned that the Ordnance Corps has been playing a commendable role in the national life since its inception.
She said the members of this Corps also made significant contributions towards rebuilding war-ravaged Kuwait, especially in removing mines after the Gulf War. They are still engaged in rebuilding the oil rich gulf country.
Despite many constraints, Hasina said, Bangabandhu had started rebuilding the army in the just liberated Bangladesh in order to uphold the independence and sovereignty of the country which was achieved at the cost of bloods of millions of martyrs.
She said Bangabandhu had declared, 'We don't want to get involved in matters of others and interference by others into our affairs will not be tolerated'. In his determination to uphold the independence and sovereignty, Bangabandhu built a modern army, navy and air force, and the nation now feels proud with the performance of the armed forces, both at home and abroad.
The PM said Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib had been able to send the Indian army back within only three months of independence due to his steadfastness. He established the Military Academy, which was a milestone for the advancement of the armed forces in a just liberated country, she added.
She said Bangladesh is now the largest contributor of peacekeeping forces in the world. The armed forces have brightened image of the country abroad and are also contributing a lot towards expediting the country's economic development through their remittances.
She listed various steps of her government for modernisation of the armed forces, including procurement of modern weapons and equipment and establishment of National Defence College, Non-Commissioned Officers' Academy, Bangladesh Peace Support Operation Training, Military Institute of Science and Technology, and Armed Forces Medical College.
Hasina sought cooperation of all in implementing the government's `Vision 2021' to build a poverty-, hunger-, illiteracy-free digital Bangladesh based on science and technology.
Cabinet ministers, PM's advisers and high civil and military officials were present at the function.
Earlier, on her arrival at the Rajendrapur Cantonment, premier was received by Army Chief General Abdul Mubeen.
She handed over the national flag to commandant of the Ordnance Centre and School Brig Gen Mirza Baker Sarwar Ahmed.
She also placed a wreath at the 'Roktosopan' in memory of the martyrs of the War of Liberation.
The PM also addressed the Fifth Corps Reunion of Ordnance Corps and 31st Commander Conference-2011.
While addressing the 31st Commander Conference-2011, Hasina said her government would eradicate poverty at any cost and asked the army personnel to put in their best efforts in this regard.
Hasina said her government is trying its level best for modernisation of the armed forces with limited resources.

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