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Infrastructure key focus to turn village into town

Published : 16 Jun 2019 09:05 PM | Updated : 07 Sep 2020 10:41 PM

In order to free the country from hunger and poverty and bring smile on the faces of distressed people, the government has undertaken programmes aimed at turning the country’s 85 thousands villages into towns. The facilities of towns will be reached to the villages, according to the finance ministry.

A huge Tk 66,234 crore allocation has been proposed in the budget for 2019-20 fiscal for rural infrastructure development in line with the promises made by the ruling Awami League (AL) in its election manifesto. Before the election, with the slogan ‘My village-My town’, AL promised to turn the villages into towns reaching city amenities at the doorstep of the villagers.

With the slogan in the electoral pledges ‘Somridhir Agrojatrai Bangladesh’ (Bangladesh in pursuit of Prosperity), Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina-led AL government assumed the office in January for the third consecutive times after a landslide victory in the 11th parliamentary elections on December 30 last year.

The government promised of reaching electricity at every household by the next five years while connecting all the villages to the district and upazila towns with concrete roads, according to budget speech analysis. Besides, congenial education atmosphere for children, fresh drinking water and sanitation will be ensured in the villages while infrastructures will be built for sports and recreation.

Apart from these, mills and factories will be built at district and upazila levels to create job opportunities while internet converge and information technology facilities will be reached all over the country. On the other hand, ‘My home, My farm’, one of the ten priority initiatives of the government, designed to bringing country’s poverty rate zero, has also got momentum aimed at attaining SDGs by 2030.

“The present government renamed the Ekti Bari Ekti Khamar’ project as ‘Amar Bari Amar Khamar (ABAK)‘ after assuming office in January this year with a view to making the rural people, particularly poor, self-dependent and bringing them to the mainstream of development,” ABAK Project Director Akber Hossain told Bangladesh Post on Sunday.

He said the government has converted the project to alleviate poverty as part of its plan to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through fund mobilisation and farming. According to ABAK officials, around 13 lakh house hold farms have so far been established across the country under the Amar Bari Amar Khamar project which envisaged reaching the figure to 20 lakh by June next year.

In line with the key objectives of the project, ABAK has been playing a vital role in making the poor self-reliant, he said. Akber said around 97 thousand Village Development Associations (VDAs) have already been formed across the country benefitting about 43.16 lakh families.

Under the project steps were taken to bring every inch of land of the low incoming families to cultivation, he said. However, the experts talking to different media said the government will have to implement these projects in planned and scientific way in order to reach its service at the villagers’ door step.

If the government fails to implement the projects in a planned and scientific way, it would not bring anything good for the rural people.
Experts suggested that the government should take multidimensional projects for ensuring smooth electricity and water supply, sanitation, quality education, health services and other civic facilities in the rural Bangladesh as like as in the city and town areas to turn villages into towns.