Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said democracy was established on a strong base in the country as her government ensured people's voting rights.
“We've ensured it [the environment] so that the people of Bangladesh can exercise their franchise freely,” she said.
The PM was addressing the oath-taking ceremony of the newly elected mayors and councillors of Rajshahi and Sylhet city corporations at her office.
Hasina said Awami League mayoral candidate AHM Khairuzzaman Liton secured victory in Rajshahi, while BNP's Ariful Haque Chowdhury won in Sylhet. “Both have been sworn in at one function,” she said.
The premier, also the AL chief, said people have achieved their voting rights and can elect candidates of their choice which has been proved now.
Noting that democracy means the voting rights of people which is a constitutional right, she said her government wants people to have their rights.
The government takes actions if any minor incident happens during an election, the PM said.
Hasina called upon the newly elected public representatives to work properly for the overall development of their respective areas.
She assured the mayors and councillors, irrespective of their political affiliations, of extending her all-out cooperation to them.
The premier, however, said no one would be spared on political consideration if any irregularities and corruption, instigation to militancy and terrorist activities take place.
Mentioning her government's plan to set up a medical university in Sylhet, she said her government never allocated budget for local bodies on political considerations.
She said the government made huge allocations for Sylhet City Corporation as well.
Stressing the need for a sustainable democratic system in the country, Hasina said a country can prosper under a democratic rule. Over the last 10 years, Bangladesh has been able to achieve tremendous success in every sector due to uninterrupted democracy, she added.
“Today, Bangladesh is recognised as a role model of development,” the PM said, highlighting different socioeconomic development projects taken by her successive governments since 2009.