Hiren Pandit: Sajeeb Wazed Joy is a visionary leader. He envisioned the future of Digital Bangladesh and Smart Bangladesh in 2009. Today more than 13 crore people are using the internet in the country. 186 million people are using mobile phones. The use of information technology in the education sector has increased. The children are studying ICT in the curriculum, and Business Incubation Centers have been set up in universities. Even the country’s BPO sector is currently exporting more than $100 million; More than 50 thousand employment opportunities have been created. Six and a half lakh people are currently freelancing in the ICT sector and numerous people are working in this sector. By 2025, 1 million people will have the opportunity to work. Bangladesh is dreaming of earning 500 million dollars in this sector and all this has been possible according to Sajeeb Wazed Joy’s plan.
As Bangladesh has progressed under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina in the last 15 years, the country has become a technology-based modern economy due to the visionary decisions of her son. In accelerating the progress of Digital Bangladesh, Sajeeb Wazed Joy has always said that Awami League should be given a chance to finish the unfinished revolution of development. According to him, continuity of development should be maintained for a new and modern Bangladesh. Now is an important time for Bangladesh. Technology kept our economy running during the pandemic.
Born on July 27, 1971, in Dhaka. Same-age Sajeeb Wazed Joy of Bangladesh. He has the ability to shoulder any responsibility of the country in the future. He holds a BSc degree in Computer Engineering from India and MA in Public Administration from Harvard University, USA. In 2007, he was honored as one of the 250 Young World Leaders. He is working as the ICT advisor to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. He has been aware of politics since childhood. In June 2008, he was instrumental in securing the release of Sheikh Hasina from the prison of the military caretaker government.
Under the leadership of Sajeeb Wazed Joy, the country has moved from a labor-based economy to a technology-based economy. In his thoughts, the developed form of digital Bangladesh is now being enjoyed in our daily life. Online technology has become a means of human-to-human communication, starting from the treatment of life-threatening diseases.
By 2025, Bangladesh is expected to earn a 5-billion-dollar export income from the IT sector. At least one lakh people are expected to be employed in the IT device manufacturing industry in the country. A roadmap of $5 billion in export earnings from the IT sector by 2025 has been set. In the information technology sector, a plan has been made to increase the export earnings of digital devices made in the country from about one billion dollars at present to 5 billion dollars by 2025. At the same time, the domestic market for ICT products and IT-enabled services is also expected to reach $5 billion.
The government believes that digital devices and IT products like mobile phones, computers and laptops will play a major role in capturing the potential market of 10 billion dollars in the information technology sector in the country and abroad within the next four years. As a part of this, the Department of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has taken a ‘Made in Bangladesh’ roadmap to expand the scope of setting up the digital device manufacturing industry in the country and branding local products in the international market.
If this roadmap is properly implemented, the employment of at least one lakh people will be ensured in the IT device manufacturing industry in the country. Laptops and mobile phones will be exported abroad to meet the domestic demand of about 200 million dollars. Recently prepared by ICT department. The hope of the ICT department is that if the ‘Made in Bangladesh’ action plan is implemented, Bangladesh will become one of the centers of ICT and IoT (Internet of Things) product manufacturing. It will also help implement the government’s Digital Access for All agenda.
The growing demand for digital devices and consumer gadgets by the country’s emerging middle class and affluent class has created a conducive environment for Bangladesh’s entry into the international hi-tech industry. The roadmap recommends prioritizing the use of locally produced ICT products in government procurement.
For this purpose, initiatives have been taken to increase the awareness of officials of government agencies involved in procurement. Besides, efforts are being made to set up hubs in Singapore, Dubai, England or any other country to facilitate the export of products produced in the country.
In the new roadmap, importance has been laid on various issues including the creation of skilled manpower, improvement of product quality, quality assurance, assessment of global demand, increase of image of Bangladeshi products worldwide, protection of intellectual property, and increase of research.
In addition to the government’s ICT department, the Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Planning, Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, Ministry of Industry, Ministry of Education as well as various ministries including Bangladesh Computer Council, Bangladesh Hi-Tech Park Authority (BHTPA), Bangladesh Economic Zone Authority (BEJA), Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA), Bangladesh Export Processing Zone Authority (BEPZA), Export Development Bureau (EPB), BSTI, BTAK, Skill Development Authority and University Grants Commission will work together. In order to make the roadmap a success, various non-governmental organizations as well as various organizations of entrepreneurs will have important responsibilities. Sajeeb Wazed Joy, Advisor to the Prime Minister on ICT, is showing us this dream. Working tirelessly for the development of digital Bangladesh.
60 percent of the total population of Bangladesh is youth. Sajeeb Wazed wants to move forward with this youth. He thinks that if we can employ two-thirds of the country’s youth in the IT sector by training them, then we can capture a significant part of the global IT market very quickly. This young population is our wealth. The government has taken various initiatives to train these people to make them skilled in the ICT sector. Efforts are also underway to establish a technology-based society with the youth’s priority and participation. Broadband connections have been established in about 5,500 unions in the country and 8,650 union digital centers are operational to reach the common people. Services are being delivered to the people through these centers. From filling out the exam form, job application, registration for corona test, and shopping to various foreign university degrees are being taken at home. People can avail of services easily through mobile banking and i-banking without going to the bank. All these are possible due to the welfare of digital Bangladesh. Now the target is Smart Bangladesh in 2041.
In 1981, today’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina made her debut in politics. In his continuation, Sajeeb Wazed Joy created new expectations by inspiring young workers. Like the father of the nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his mother Sheikh Hasina, he has the extraordinary ability to sincerely draw common people closer. Sajeeb Wazed Joy is naturally the worthy successor of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Most of the country’s eyes are focused on this leadership of the third generation.
He is hardworking like Bangabandhu. He wants to build Awami League as a political party of the new day in the spirit of youth. However, there is no denying that the Awami League is still the most powerful and popular political party in the context of Bangladesh. Today’s youth can show Bangladesh the way of tomorrow’s leadership. As shown by Sajeeb Wazed Joy. He is now on the stage of politics due to the inheritance of politics.
Agrarian societies have gradually become technological societies. Technology has expanded in this country only by working under the guidance of Sajeeb Wazed Joy. As a result, modern Bangladesh was formed. After building Digital Bangladesh, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is taking the lead to build Smart Bangladesh. Just as Sheikh Hasina is selfless and loves people from her heart, Joy is moving forward in the same way. He had to win the hearts of opposing people.
In fact, the father of the nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his parents’ scientists Dr. Wazed Mia and Sheikh Hasina, he has the extraordinary ability to draw common people to him with a sincere heart. Just as Sheikh Hasina has set an example with active initiatives in eliminating corruption, terrorism and militancy in the country, on the advice of Joy, the high import duty has been lifted from over 94 parts in the production of technology products and brought down to 1 percent. Joy knows that the way Bangladesh’s economy is progressing, we will become a middle-income country after 2026.
A new generation of leadership like Joy has ushered in positive changes in our politics as well as overall progress in development. The entry of the new generation into politics is an additional achievement on our way forward. According to the data of the Election Commission, about 23 lakh young voters appear on the voter list every year. Out of 9.21 lakh voters, 4 crore voters are under 40 years of age.
Since 2020, we have seen the reality of the dream of ‘Digital Bangladesh’ which was shown to us a century ago. In last two months during covid we did all office work from home on internet, meeting on video conference; Done banking with fintech, done online marketing, took doctor’s advice through telemedicine. Also watched dramas and movies through streaming and OTT. We have now very well witnessed the benefits of Sajeeb Wazed Joy’s Digital Bangladesh. When court proceedings are going online, when students are studying using e-learning, when farmers and farmers are selling their produce directly to the consumer avoiding middlemen; While the youth in remote areas of the country are earning foreign exchange by freelancing; Then the nation realized the foresight of Sajeeb Wazed Joy.
Sajeeb Wazed Joy, the architect of Digital Bangladesh, has shown his wisdom in many ways. Avoiding bureaucratic complications, he formed ‘a2i’ under the direct supervision of the Prime Minister’s Office, When Bangladesh’s own artificial satellite ‘Bangabandhu Satellite-1’ was launched into space in 2018, many could not understand the far-reaching plans of Sajeeb Wazed Joy. By using this satellite, television channels are not only saving billions of foreign currencies but the frequency of this satellite is also being sold abroad. Due to having its own satellite, the status of Bangladesh has also increased in the eyes of the world. By 2041, a knowledge-based digital Bangladesh pioneer Sajeeb Wazed Joy has arranged to launch 5G network to join Bangladesh in the fourth industrial revolution and enjoy its full benefits. As a result, our productivity increases as well as efficiency and effectiveness. At the same time, the efficiency of our public resources is increasing. For that purpose, Sheikh Hasina Institute of Frontier Technologies and Sheikh Kamal Training Institute and Incubation Center have been created in all districts.
He has helped formulate universal policies so that the nation’s wealth depends on digital commerce, and rural youth and housewives can also contribute to the economy. BTRC has fixed the selling price of bandwidth by declaring ‘One Country, One Rate’ so that marginalized people can get cheap high-speed internet as well as city dwellers. We can see the reflection of the personality, passion and patriotism of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in his character Sajeeb Wazed Joy.
Hiren Pandit is a columnist and a researcher.