Bangladesh country of peace, fraternity: PM
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said the government has established Bangladesh as a moderate, democratic and economically prosperous country.
“Bangladesh is again known as the country of peace and fraternity,” she said while addressing a function of holy 'Kathina Chibara Dana' (a ritual of offering yellow robe to monks) and Buddhist Religious Congregation 2011 on the premises of International Buddhist Monastery at Merul in the city.
Supreme patriarch of the Buddhists in Bangladesh Dhammasen Mahathera presided over the programme organised by Bangladesh Buddhist Federation.
Industries Minister Dilip Barua, State Minister for Chittagong Hill Tracts Affairs Dipankar Talukdar and Ambassador of China to Bangladesh Zhang Xianyi also spoke on the occasion.
Hasina said Awami League (AL) always believes in communal harmony in the country and establishes it when it comes to power.
During its previous tenure (1996-2001), her government gave one bigha of land to the International Buddhist Monastery and is again giving another bigha for the same purpose, she said adding that, she gave Tk 10 million to the Buddhist Religious Welfare Fund and waived the duty on 353 statues of Lord Buddha that were given by the Thai government.
The government is providing fund for celebrating different Buddhist programmes throughout the year. It is also providing assistance for the modernisation and repair of Buddhist monasteries across the country, she said.
“In the last three years, we developed and renovated 733 temples, Kang and pagodas, and gave Tk 15 million to the Buddhist Religious Welfare Trust,” said the PM.
The premier said, at current, there are two ministers in the cabinet from the Buddhist community. This year, the government gave Swadhinata Padak to late Shangharaj Joytipal Mohathero for his contribution to the War of Liberation.
She said people of all faiths now celebrate their religious programmes in befitting manner with joy and fervour.
Earlier, Hasina formally unveiled the plaque of International Buddhist Monastery.