The forthcoming Eleventh parliamentary election 2018 has created interest from all corners of society in Bangladesh and beyond. In fact, it’s a very important election for the country and its people because it will determine the future of the country and its people in the next five years. It is pertinent to note that the policy of the leader will affect our everyday life in one way or another. Thus, the active participation of the people of Bangladesh to elect the visionary, efficient leadership is a must because visionary leadership matters for changing the fate of tens of thousands of marginal people in the country. This write-up focuses on the question of why Sheikh Hasina should be in power again? I will be looking at this question briefly from two dimensions, national and international.
From the national perspective, the level of development in the country is visible to everyone. Even the critics of Sheikh Hasina acknowledge this. Once, access to food, healthcare or education was a luxury to tens of thousands of people in Bangladesh. In the last ten years of Hasina’s regime, this gap has been reduced drastically. For instance, the introduction of ‘Books distribution ceremony’ on 1st January each year at Primary and Secondary level, awarding thousands of scholarships to the needy, meritorious students’, and other social safety net schemes need to be regarded as excellent initiatives taken by Sheikh Hasina to improve the life of many marginalized people in the society.
In addition, the approval of 8th pay scale for the government officers in Bangladesh is noteworthy which has affected the lives of millions in one dimension or another. The whole country has now transformed into a digital one which has many positive sides for the development of the country. Moreover, the abolishment of quota system in the government jobs is one of the praiseworthy decisions taken by Sheikh Hasina.
Another notable visionary initiative of Sheikh Hasina is the approval of Delta Plan 2100 as a long-term strategy to prevent floods and soil erosion, manage rivers and wastes, and supply water throughout the century. It is praiseworthy plan for sustainable water management in the country which will impact the lives of millions in the country.
Y.Sawada and M. M. N. Kitano in their recently published (2018) book, entitled Economic and Social Development of Bangladesh: Miracle and Challenges, identify Bangladesh as a developmental miracle which needs to be celebrated. The country is now cited as one of the fastest growing economies in the world. In addition, the recent Human Development report acknowledges the overall development in the people’s lives of Bangladesh. Thus, it is well-known whether nationally or internationally that the human development in Bangladesh is not a prediction or myth but reality today which merits serious attention. Behind such success story of Bangladesh, the efficient leadership of Sheikh Hasina both at home and abroad played crucial role which needs to be acknowledged from all corners of society.
From international relations perspective, Sheikh Hasina has brought a dimension in peaceful international relations. Indeed, refugees all around the world are highly neglected. Even the strong, powerful, developed states has closed their doors to the tens of thousands of refugees in the world today. While being a small country, having more than 160 million people, Sheikh Hasina has opened the doors to the millions of Rohingya refugees which deserve serious acclamation. In fact, if every leader of the world would follow the same international relations, the world would be more peaceful, stable and prosperous.
In addition, Sheikh Hasina has taken the name of Bangladesh in the external world with prestige and honour. She has improved the foreign relations of Bangladesh tremendously. She has been able to represent Bangladesh in the multilateral forums in a prestigious manner. Needless to mention, today, Bangladesh is a name of dynamic, peaceful international relations to the whole world. And this dynamic international relations based on cooperation matters for Bangladesh. Today Bangladesh-India relations enjoy warm ties which have touched the lives of millions through the access to electricity.
It might not be wrong to say that if the current level of development and peaceful international relations continues, the day is not so far when Bangladesh will be in the list of developed world. The country will not be cited as poor or developing world anymore.
The bottom-line is that in every plus, there is a minus. But it is noticed that some national and global media intentionally highlighting some negative news of Bangladesh in their coverage while overlooking many positive dimension. The critical question comes, can they mention the name of those developing countries which has been developed in such a pace like Bangladesh in the last ten years? Thus the role of the media needs to be constructive.
And I am not saying that there are no limitations of Sheikh Hasina government. Despite few limitations, one needs to acknowledge the positive steps taken to change the lives of the Bangladeshi people. Thus, you might not like the political ideology of Sheikh Hasina, just think about the continuing extraordinary development, the future of the country, and especially the future of your kids and the future generations. Against such backdrop, I strongly believe that there is no alternative to the continuing leadership of Sheikh Hasina in Bangladesh considering the overall development of the country and its peoples. In fact, such visionary leadership is a crying need for a peaceful world today which needs to be acknowledged from the international community as well.