Only a pro-people government can ensure spontaneous participation of the people in every development project and progress. When people see that a particular project has been approved by their representatives in parliament and that it will bring benefit for the vast majority in the long run, they work to make the project successful.
Bangladesh Post recently caught up with a popular people’s representative, Md Ghulam Hussain, a member of parliament (MP) from Chandpur-1, Kachua, to know about a few things about his long career. Md Ghulam Hussain worked last as Secretary, Internal Resources Department and Chairman of National Board of Revenue (From October 2012 to January 2015). Before this he served as Commerce secretary in 2010-12, and in 2009 he served as additional secretary of Home Ministry.
He is the second Bangladeshi from the country who acted as president of the Committee of the 67th conference of US-ESCAP in Bangkok in 2012. He was the member-secretary of investigation committee on BDR Rebellion. During his government service he visited more than 60 countries of the world and had chance to work at Bangladesh Embassy in the United States. Besides, he has published many articles on country’s economic and industries in different newspapers and magazines.
The interview was taken by Anwar Hossain.
Bangladesh Post (BP): How you got involved in Politics?
Md Ghulam Hussain: Look, this is a bit longish story. From my early service life, I was engaged in different types of social work. Since my early life till now I have strong connection with my soil and people of my native area. I had a project named after my village known as ‘Alokito Hasimpur’. With this I started to educate the underprivileged people since 1980.
From my experience, I realized that politics is above all kinds of work, and social work is part of politics. And my social work started with making people educated. I should state here that I am the first master’s degree holder from my village.
In my student life I was involved in many kinds of activities. Many women and children came to my home for help, as their health condition was not good. From my doctor friends I came to know that they were suffering from malnutrition and also affected by worms.
I organized a health campaign to raise awareness among my village people. Many health organisations and medical officers helped me in this campaign. And it became a routine work to organize such health campaigns, and from there one of my friends suggested me to establish a medical centre. Finally, with the help of many other people, I established a hospital named Fayjunnesa Charitable Medical Centre in 1988. Some pharmaceutical companies supplied medicine for free for the hospital, and in 1992-93 it became a full 20-bed hospital.
With the help and donation of other well-wishers and also with Jakat fund I am running this hospital where treatment is totally free.
I also contribute to the spreading of education. I found out that the nearest college from my village is about eight kilometers away, and it was difficult for girls from my village to continue their education. It was the reason for 95 percent dropout happening after secondary education.
From those perspectives, I established a college in 2009 and named it Dr Mansoor-Uddin Mahila College. The pass rate is 100 percent in that college. It is totally running on personal donations. It is not enlisted in MPO; neither does it get any government facilities.
There are 450 girl students in the college and it’s a half residential. A total of 208 girls stay in college hostel. Centering on the college, huge employment opportunities have grown. Different people supply different kinds of things like rice, vegetables, fish, meat, and so on.
All civic facilities are there in my village excepting gas. That’s why it’s now truly ‘Alokito Hasimpur’.
I want to change the definition of social work through my political carrier, mandatory participation of all spare people based on their demand, comments and how they want to see the society in the coming future. What we do now, we impose a model from which we have to come out.
Everyone has to participate by depositing own investment even if it’s only Tk 1. This will make awareness to be employed and to get things done and maintain this after implementation.
I also have another project on accommodation which is totally based on Jakat fund. We collect this fund during Ramadan and construct at least 30 houses. We find such persons who do not have the ability to build a house but have their own land. We help them build a house.
We also have a unique project titled ‘Mother and Child Library’. This is for the children to learn to read and acquire knowledge. A mother can be a member of the library and take books to read. This project helps to promote family level education.
With this project I dream of making more educated mothers to make a better society. All my projects mentioned above showed me the way to do more and now I found the political carrier to do so.
BP: What is your future plan if you are elected?
Md Ghulam Hussain: My plan is very simple. I don’t want to criticize others but want to do something for the people. I strongly believe that if I don’t have the ability to do something good for the people I should not do such things that may cause harm to them.
I always try to do something for people without any condition. With everyone’s participation I will do more for the people’s well being. I will take people’s advice before doing anything.
Now, I only have one dream, if I can do ‘Alokito Hasimpur’ why cannot I dream for ‘Alokito Kachua’? This does not only mean to construct roads and bridges. Rather, I want to address education, treatment, accommodation and other facilities.
But I want quality education, better treatment for the people. By incorporating values we can ensure quality development. Violence, fighting cannot ensure us quality development. Bangladesh led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has already achieved many developments. Development over the last 10 years was a miracle but I will focus on education, health facilities, housing and finally renovating Kachua, my election constituency.
I believe development is a continuous process, and in the coming days many more will be added to our development agenda. So with my institutional experience in making a better Hasimpur I want to venture into nation building.
BP: What are your future thoughts about your constitution’s educated people?
Md Ghulam Hussain: My suggestion for the educated people is: why do they have to depend on private-public-bank job? They really should do something which will make them self-employed and also create employment opportunities for others.
We have local technologies, local labour; so we just need courage to combine all things together to make something different.
BP: If you get elected, how will you incorporate the party principles in your constituency?
Md Ghulam Hussain: I will focus on democratic practice. We will not criticize others but will find way how to make us richer with our limited sources. I can state here that I had the opportunity to directly obtain AL membership certificate from AL President [Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina] or the party general secretary, but I follow the party rules so I got my membership certificate from the union level AL president.
My principles make me popular among the root level people. I have done many things not to publicise myself but to go along with everyone’s participation.
If the party and public support is there it’s easier to establish party ethics. A party only run by its leaders but without support of the people will not survive in the long run. With support of everyone, I want peaceful coexistence of every party and people.
BP: What do you think the present MP of your constituency will do?
Md Ghulam Hussain: Undoubtedly, he has done vast development. As he is in power for the last ten years, he got opportunities to develop our Kachua. Maybe no one will have such opportunity to serve the people for such a long time.
But I will focus on shaping my constituency as per party ethics. I have confidence that I can go a long way with people’s support.