Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday expressed her firm conviction that none can stop the indomitable pace of the country's advancement as it has become a "role model" of development before the world.
"Bangladesh is an independent country. None can ever stop the indomitablepace of Bangladesh's advancement. It is much needed to march Bangladesh ahead in such a way," she said.
She also urged all to work in a united way for transforming Bangladesh into a developed one by 2041 maintaining the country's current status of developing nation.
The prime minister was addressing the graduation ceremony of the "DSCSC 2021-2022 Course" of Defence Services Command and Staff College (DSCSC) held at its Sheikh Hasina Complex, Mirpur Cantonment, Dhaka, joining virtually from her official Ganabhaban residence in the capital.
She said that Bangladesh has appeared to be the role model of development before the world as it has achieved the status of a developing nation due to its miracle of socio-economic advancement.
"We want to be a developed and prosperous country by 2041 keeping the status intact," she said.
The Prime Minister called upon the graduating officers to work as the "soldiers of 2041", saying, "Move ahead keeping your heads always high. Love the country and its people and devote yourselves to the betterment of the country."
"None can ignore Bangladesh from now on," she said.
The premier urged the fresh graduating officers, particularly the overseas officers, to be the envoys of Bangladesh as some people still love to spread out defamatory propaganda against the country like in past despite Bangladesh has achieved a reputed position before the world.
Sheikh Hasina said that the image of Bangladesh has brightened due to the country's socio-economic advancement, maintaining international peace by Bangladeshi peacekeepers and efficiency in curbing terrorism and militancy.
Bangladesh is now getting that honour which it had earned after becoming an independent nation in 1971, she said.
After the assassination of the Father of the Nation with most of his family members in 1975, the country lost the hard-earned honour of being an independent state that was achieved through Liberation War led by the Bangabandhu, she said.
Turning to Covid-19, the prime minister asked all to comply with the health protocols accordingly as a new variant of the lethal virus has emerged.
"Follow the health protocols. Protect yourselves and your families," she said.
The prime minister also remotely handed over certificates among 251 graduating officers including 17 female and 47 overseas officers from 18 friendly countries.
Commandant of the DSCSC Major General Md Jubayer Salehin delivered the welcome address at the function.
Sheikh Hasina said her government is following the foreign policy of "Friendship to all, malice to none" adopted by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
She added: "We don't want to fight with anyone. But, we will not remain silent if the country's independence and sovereignty are attacked. We definitely protect it or denounce it." Following the foreign policy, she said they are holding talks with Myanmar and international communities to send back the Rohingyas to their homeland in a peaceful manner.
"Bangladesh has created a dignified position in the world due to our foreign policy," she continued.
The prime minister said that they are building the armed forces with modern equipment in such a way, so that they can protect the country's independence and sovereignty.
"I want each of the members of the armed forces to be of international standard and for that I have done many things that included changing the designations, "she said.
Describing the armed forces as the symbol of independence and sovereignty, the premier said that the armed forces personnel are always ready for making supreme sacrifice in any needs of the nation alongside protecting the country's independence and sovereignty.
She highly praised the contribution of the armed forces in dealing with the Covid-19 situation despite the fact that the world economy and livelihoods have become standstill due to the pandemic.
The armed forces personnel have brightened the image of Bangladesh on the world stage by working with efficiency and devotion in the peacekeeping missions, she said, adding that Bangladesh has once again topped as peacekeepers sending country.
Spelling out the government's steps for development of the DSCSC, she said the government has taken up projects to extend infrastructural facilities of this college.
About the DSCSC, the prime minister said the institution has been acclaimed as a unique military educational institution in the international arena.
Since its inception, she said, this college has successfully completed 128 courses, through which, 5686 officers including 1255 overseas ones from 43 countries have so far graduated.
The Prime Minister in her speech, congratulated all the graduates on successful completion of the course. She advised all the graduating officers to contribute to the national development through their attained knowledge, will-power and enthusiasm. She also thanked the Commandant, DSCSC for the successful completion of DSCSC Course 2021-2022 with highest professionalism and without curtailing any event despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
At the beginning of the ceremony, Commandant, DSCSC, Major General Md Jubayer Salehin delivered his welcome address. In his speech, the Commandant highlighted the training activities designed within the course curricula to prepare the course participants to take on the challenges of the 21st Century. At the end, he expressed his deep gratitude to the Prime Minister for her gracious presence and consistent support for the development and progress of the college.
This year total 251 officers including 132 from Bangladesh Army, 34 from Bangladesh Navy, 35 from Bangladesh Air Force, 3 from Bangladesh Police and 47 overseas officers from 18 friendly countries namely India, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Uganda and Zambia graduated from this college. It is mentionable that a total of 17 female officers have graduated this year which is a testimony of Women Empowerment in the Armed Forces.
Defence Services Command and Staff College is the oldest tri-service organisation and a premier training institute of Bangladesh Armed Forces. This institute prepares the selected mid-level officers of three services for the assumption of increasing responsibilities both in command and staff appointments. Over the period, this institute has become one of the prominent military institutes of the globe because of its professional standard. So far, 5,686 Bangladeshi officers, 08 Police Officers and 1,255 overseas officers from 42 friendly countries have graduated from this college.
The graduation ceremony was conducted following all Covid protocols. Senior military and civil officials attended the colourful ceremony.