The 22nd national council of the ruling Awami League (AL) will be held today with a pledge to build a Smart Bangladesh by 2041.
The main theme of this year's council is 'Unnoyon Abhijatrai Deshratna Sheikh Hasinar Netritte Bangabandhur Swapner Unnoto, Samridho O Smart Bangladesh Gorar Protoye'.
Awami League President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will inaugurate the council by releasing pigeons at 10.30am at the historic Suhrawardy Udyan. After the hoisting of national and party flags, central leaders will take seats at the stage. Then a 30-minute cultural function will be held.
Party's Office Secretary Barrister Biplab Barua will present the obituary references. Obaidul Quader will present the report of general secretary. AL Presidium Member and reception committee convener Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim will deliver the welcome address.
The first session of the council will end with the speech of Sheikh Hasina. Around 7,000 councilors and over one lakh leaders and workers from across the country will join the national council.
There will be a break for lunch and prayers after the end of the inaugural session. Then the council session will be held in the auditorium of Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh (IEB). Party's president and general secretary will be elected in the session.
A three-member election commission has already been formed to elect the leadership.
A total of 11 sub-committees are working for the council. As per the tradition, party president Sheikh Hasina is chairman of the council preparatory committee and general secretary Obaidul Quader is its member secretary.
After visiting the council venue at the historic Suhrawardy Udyan on Thursday, Obaidul Quader said the council will be held a simple manner as part of austerity measures but huge number of leaders and workers will join it.
AL Organizing Secretary and stage and decoration affairs sub-committee member secretary Mirza Azam said the stage of the council is being made in the shape of boat along with Padma Bridge which will be 80 feet long and 44 feet wide. The height of the main stage will be 7 feet. Separate stage will be for cultural episode. Chairs will be set at the stage in four layers. Party president and general secretary will seat in the first layer followed by advisory council members, senior leaders and presidium members in the second one and other central leaders will seat in the rest of the two layers.
Besides, LED monitors will be in the council venue. As part of maintaining austerity in view of the global economic crisis, the council is being arranged in a simple manner. So, invitations were not extended to foreign guests. But central 14-party, Jatiya Party, BNP and all other registered political parties have been invited.
Previous councils were held in two days but this time council is being held on a single day to minimize costs.
The 21st council of the party was held on December 20-21. The budget of the last council was Taka 3.43 crore. The national committee of the party has approved Taka 3.13 crore for this 22nd national council.