Govt to set up rural development academies in Jamalpur, Rangpur...

Govt to set up rural development academies in Jamalpur, Rangpur

 Staff Correspondent

 Published: 09:28 PM, 28 April 2022   Updated: 09:28 PM, 28 April 2022

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina chaired the Cabinet meeting in the conference room of her office in Dhaka; Photo: PID

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina chaired the Cabinet meeting in the conference room of her office in Dhaka; Photo: PID

The government will establish two more rural development academies in Jamalpur and Rangpur districts aiming to make the private sector, especially small and medium enterprises, more effective for balanced development of the country.

To this end, the Cabinet today, in principle, approved the drafts of Sheikh Hasina Rural Development Academy, Jamalpur Act, 2022 and Rural Development Academy, Rangpur Act, 2022.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina chaired the regular Cabinet meeting at her office.

“We need more academies similar to Bangladesh Academy for Rural Development (BARD) and Rural Development Academy (RDA) to meet the necessities of growing work pressures,” said Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam while briefing the reporters after the meeting at Bangladesh Secretariat in the capital on Thursday.

Mentioning that both the acts have 23 sections, he said the two academies would be governed in the similar manner of the BARD, Cumilla and RDA, Bagura.

A 21-member board would be led by the minister or state minister or deputy minister of the ministry of local government, rural development and cooperatives, while secretary of the rural development and cooperative divisions would be vice-chairman and director general of the academy would perform as the member secretary, he said.

The Cabinet Secretary said the academy would be responsible mainly for capacity building works, conducting research and piloting some projects. “Research would be their fundamental job alongside piloting new projects to assess the utility of those,” he added.

He said the academy, if necessary, could affiliate with educational institutions to offer diploma, post-graduation diploma and certificate courses alongside conducting different professional training courses.

With the new two, the number of rural development academy will be four in the country, said Anwarul Islam, adding that another academy would be established in Jashore.

The Cabinet today also approved the draft of National Voluntary Policy-2022.

He said the policy has been brought in line with sections 16 and 59 of Bangladesh’s constitution, perspective plan, sustainable development goals, five year plans and the directives of tackling Covid-19.

He added the policy would cover all volunteer services such as community services and educational activities, educational institutions and students, group of destitute, inequality and deprived, environment group, community cooperation group, community political group, organised social group, comprehensive community activities, community festival, sports, entertainment, corporate volunteer service, relevance and spontaneous volunteer service, emergency service, emergency decision making and online volunteer services.

The Cabinet Secretary said although the local government ministry has initiated it, lots of ministries have the involvement with this job and according to the allocation of business the ministry of disaster management would lead it.

Replying to a query regarding the policy, he said the United Nations (UN) has told the government that Bangladesh should have a volunteer policy as Bangladesh is mainly a pioneer country of volunteer activities.

Anwarul Islam said many countries have the policy but Bangladesh, as the first country, done it in an organised manner in 1973 under Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and then the volunteer activities expanded to many countries.

Due to the policy, foreign volunteers could work in Bangladesh while similarly local volunteers could also work as UN volunteers in different countries, he said.

He said beyond the schedule, the Cabinet also discussed about the recent Diarrhea in the capital and flash-flood in haors.

The Cabinet Secretary said Dhaka WASA has conducted tests in different areas but it didn’t find any bacteria on the source of its water.

“People are frequently taking connections by perforating the main supply pipe of WASA, which is the reason for bacteria intrusion in water,” he said.

Besides, experts have found chlorine shortage in water in main areas and it is also another main reason, but WASA has taken necessary measures to solve the problems, he added.

The Cabinet secretary revealed that WHO will give 7.5 million Cholera vaccines and if anyone receives two doses of vaccine, he or she will remain safe for three years.

The Cabinet Secretary said another thing is that the Prime Minister has requested people to clean their water tanks regularly.

“If these reservoirs are not cleaned in every three to six months, bacteria will develop...This is also an important factor (for cholera),” he said quoting the Premier.

He said everyone needs to be a little motivated and WASA has been told about it. “We are also telling PID that they will launch a massive campaign from now on (about cleaning water tanks),” he added.

About the flood in haors, Anwarul Islam said around 70 percent of paddy has already been harvested in haors areas and if there is no more rain, the remaining paddy could be harvested easily.