Hiren Pandit: Sheikh Hasina, who always puts the interests of the country and the nation above all, said, “My accountability is to the people of the country. If it is accepted by the countrymen, I don’t care what anyone else says about the election. Bangladesh is an independent and sovereign country. It may be a small country, but its population is huge. People are our main strength. So, I don’t care who says what. A favourable electoral environment has been ensured by confronting many hurdles. There were many obstacles, But the people of the country were wary of suffrage.
The Election Commission conducted the polls smoothly. In Canada too, the vote was 43 percent, no one questioned that. It remains to be seen whether the people can vote or not. Senator Patrick C of Nigeria said I have visited various polling stations in Dhaka and Narayanganj districts. I saw the locals voting enthusiastically. The vote was held peacefully. He praised the transparent voter list and voting system. Russian representative Andrey Shutov said the election was transparent, open, and credible. The polling security environment was also very good. Representatives of the Scottish Parliament, OIC, Arab Parliament, and Gambia also responded by praising the vote.
Many countries in the world now have women rulers. Germany, Ireland, Finland, India, Liberia, Argentina, Bangladesh, and many other countries have either women president or prime minister. In information technology, Bangladesh has made a lot of progress in empowering women. Bangladesh’s progress is much better than that of India and Pakistan in the social development index. The average life expectancy of the people of Bangladesh has increased. Bangladesh is in a promising position in the list of happy countries. Bangladesh has turned around in every field including education, health, agriculture, and sports. The government has adopted the ‘Vision-2041’ program to make Bangladesh a happy-prosperous Sonar Bengal.
Bangabandhu’s daughter Sheikh Hasina started working as a pioneer for the overall welfare, development and liberation of the people of Bangladesh. She has proved that she has no choice but to institutionalize and develop democracy in Bangladesh. Sheikh Hasina’s integrity, devotion, logical mindset, strong morale, wisdom, and extraordinary leadership have established Bangladesh at a different height in the world. She is now known as a world-renowned leader.
Bangladesh Awami League has been and continues to play a politically vocal, protective role against all forms of exploitation, deprivation, injustice, and oppression. Since its foundation, the Awami League has been working for the economic, social, political, and cultural liberation of the people. When the party is in power, people’s fortunes improve. The history of 74 years since the founding of this party bears witness to this fact. The Awami League has been in power for 15 years under the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the brave daughter of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu, and she continues to work dedicatedly for the welfare of the people.
The world is amazed by Sheikh Hasina’s indomitable strength, courage, morale and strong leadership. Bangladesh will become the 29th largest economy in the world by 2030 and the 20th largest by 2040. Meanwhile, Bangladesh was declared a ‘middle-income country’ in 2026 and will debut as a ‘developed country’ in 2041. The big proof that Bangladesh is moving forward is that the per capita income of the people of the country has increased in the last few years. Currently, the per capita income is 2 thousand 795 US dollars.
Bangladesh is one of the top local countries in the world today in terms of economic progress. Sheikh Hasina is Prime Minister for the fifth time. Sheikh Hasina is a world leader who ignores all bloodshot eyes. The shape of a new Bangladesh. The charismatic leader brought a huge victory to the Awami League in the 12th national parliamentary elections. She has set another record by becoming the Prime Minister of the country for the fifth time.
National elections are held every five years. We have created an environment so that people can vote without any hassle. Whether people accept this election or not is important to me. By forming a government with the support of the people, we will be able to implement the status that Bangladesh has as a developing country.
I have this faith and trust in the people. Since 2009, the country has developed so much because of this democratic system. We have more work ahead of us, which we want to complete. No one could complain about the 2008 elections. BNP got only 30 seats out of 300 seats in that election and Awami League got 233 seats.
Sheikh Hasina and Sheikh Rehana were in Germany when the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was killed along with most of his family members in 1975. After spending almost half a century in exile, she returned to the country in 1981. Bangladesh Awami League, which also led the war of independence, took the lead. In her 43-year political journey, she has walked a steady path in fighting for the right to vote. After 21 years in 1996, Sheikh Hasina took oath as the Prime Minister of the country for the first time after winning the seventh parliamentary elections on June 23.
After winning the 9th parliamentary elections, Sheikh Hasina assumed the duties of Prime Minister for the second time on January 6, 2009. She was sworn in as Prime Minister for the third time on January 12, 2014, in the 10th parliamentary elections. She formed the government on January 7, 2019, after winning the last eleventh parliamentary election.
Awami League’s absolute victory in the 12th National Parliament election opened the door for Sheikh Hasina to become Prime Minister for the fifth time. This will also be a record for becoming the Prime Minister of the country. All in all, Sheikh Hasina has created a new history in the new year. She has served three times as the leader of the opposition party. Voting in the 12th National Parliament elections was completed in a peaceful and festive atmosphere all over the country, putting an end to all speculations, doubts and fears.
Apart from a couple of isolated incidents, no major violence was reported anywhere in the country. About 8 lakh members of law-and-order forces including Police, RAB, Ansar-VDP, Army, Navy, and Coast Guard have been deployed at the field level to ensure free, fair, and impartial elections and for voters to travel freely to the polling stations. Apart from this, 8 lakh officials were engaged in polling.
About two hundred foreign observers observed the election of the 12th National Parliament. 76 of them are journalists. In addition, several thousand local observers observed the election. Voters cast their votes smoothly. Voters also expressed their satisfaction with the law-and-order situation. Apart from men, the presence of women voters was also noticeable. Despite the anti-election propaganda and attempts to create panic in the public mind, the voter turnout is satisfactory across the country.
It is a victory for democracy. The Election Commission and Prime Minister and Awami President Sheikh Hasina announced that neutral elections have been implemented. Meanwhile, Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Kazi Habibul Awal has commented that the national elections have been free, fair and impartial due to the political goodwill, sincerity and cooperation of the government. The government is sincere and we have received support as promised by the government, so elections were held in a free, fair and impartial manner with a concerted effort under the party government. 41.8 percent of voters voted in the election. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was able to successfully face all the conspiracies and lead her party Awami League to power again by winning a large number of votes. Her tenure is also called the golden era of development in the history of Bangladesh.
Sheikh Hasina, the eldest daughter of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, was born on September 28, 1947, in Tungipara, Gopalganj. She has been associated with politics since her student life. On August 15, 1975, Bangabandhu was brutally killed with all his family members. At that time Sheikh Hasina and her sister Sheikh Rehana survived because they were abroad. After six years of exile, she returned to the country as the president of the Awami League on May 17, 1981.
She successfully served as Prime Minister for 15 consecutive years and changed the image of Bangladesh. Bangladesh is now a truly changed Bangladesh. The people of the country have seen Sheikh Hasina’s magic of development success and progress for 15 years by opening the doors of all mega projects including the dream Padma Bridge, Metrorail, Bangabandhu Karnaphuli Tunnel, Elevated Expressway, Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant. In addition, at least 21 attempts were made on her life in her long political life. This includes the August 21 grenade attack. Awami League President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina once again proved that there is no one else in the country who is equal to her in terms of political strategy and intelligence. Not only statesmen; but her name is also on the list of powerful personalities of the world. Sheikh Hasina is at the 46th position in Forbes magazine’s list of the world’s most powerful women in 2023.
Germany’s Angela Merkel was prime minister for 16 years with four consecutive terms. Indira Gandhi was in power for three terms for a little over 15 years. Sheikh Hasina has already broken their records and now she is writing a new history. She opened the way for the party leaders to participate in the elections to make the elections competitive and participatory. After her announcement, many local leaders of the Awami League participated in the election as independent candidates. Awami League and 14-party coalition partners have also lost in many places to independent candidates.
She was able to bring radical changes in increasing domestic production, infrastructure development, expansion and paving of roads, education, and treatment. In addition, Sheikh Hasina worked hard to protect the interests of workers by providing incentives for remittances, development in the clothing sector, and protecting the interests of the workers to enrich the country’s economy. Due to the prosecution of war criminals, suppression of militancy, and zero-tolerance policy against drugs, these negative effects could not be so strong even in the last decade and a half. Sending Bangabandhu satellite in space, women empowerment, digitalization of government services, city services in the rural environment.
Awami League was able to provide support to people through My Village My Town with all civic amenities in the village and my house, my farm. Sheikh Hasina supervised herself from the grassroots to the highest level of Awami League. Foreign observers also expressed satisfaction with the overall conditions of the polls. Observer groups from the United States, Germany and Ireland gave complimentary and positive responses.
After visiting the polling station, they are very satisfied and very optimistic about the election of Bangladesh after seeing the presence of so many voters and the peaceful atmosphere in the polling station. They congratulated the Bangladesh government after seeing the presence of 40 to 70 percent of voters outside the capital. The observer group of the United States, Germany and Ireland also said that the matter will be presented internationally. In the United States, Democratic Party politician Jim Batts said the vote was fair and participatory.
The main achievement of the progress of women in Bangladesh is Sheikh Hasina. Her liberal and unbiased views on women are remarkable. Her contribution to the development and progress of Bangladesh and the development of democracy is immense and unparalleled. She took Bangladesh to the highest place. Sheikh Hasina is the longest-serving female head of government in the world. The current Sheikh Hasina government has played a challenging role in poverty alleviation.
The current government has been able to lay the foundation for the desired growth of the country. Maternal and infant mortality rates have decreased. In information technology, Bangladesh has made a lot of progress in empowering women. Bangladesh’s progress is much better than that of India and Pakistan in the social development index. The average life expectancy of the people of Bangladesh has increased. Bangladesh is in a promising position in the list of happy countries.
Bangladesh has turned around in every field including education, health, agriculture, and sports. Sheikh Hasina will take a strict stand against corruption and irregularities by forming a new smart cabinet – this is the expectation of the countrymen. The rise in prices of essential commodities has to be controlled, need to remove irregularities in the financial sector and curb money laundering. Sheikh Hasina is now the world’s best example and world leaders have praised her initiative to tackle the global crisis.
The writer is a, columnist & researcher