President Md Abdul Hamid on Monday said the homecoming of Awami League President Sheikh Hasina paved the way to establish the spirit of the Liberation War, the values of independence and democracy in the country.
"Sheikh Hasina's home return is a milestone in Bangladesh's history of democracy. Her historic homecoming paved the way to establish the spirit of Liberation War, the values of independence and democracy," he said in a message issued on the occasion of the 42nd homecoming day of Sheikh Hasina.
Abdul Hamid said upon returning home, Sheikh Hasina started a movement to recover the country's democracy and following it, the autocratic government collapsed through the 1990 mass movement and the democracy got triumph.
He said Awami League formed the government under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina after achieving a landslide victory in the general election held on June 12, 1996.
During that time, the President said, the Chittagong Hill Tracts Peace Accord was signed to resolve the long-standing conflicts between the hill dwellers and Bangalees, while the Ganges Water Sharing Agreement was inked between Bangladesh and India.
He said the 14-party alliance assumed power under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina through the 29 December general elections in 2008 and took various programmes for the welfare of the people, while the judgment of the Bangabandhu killing case was implemented.
Bangladesh's image was brightened in the national and international arena through the implementation of various programmes, including the establishment of democracy and human rights, education, health, agriculture, women's
empowerment, cent percentage electricity coverage, information technology, rural infrastructure, and foreign employment.
Abdul Hamid said the alliance, led by Sheikh Hasina, assumed power again through the January 5 general elections in 2014 and started trials of war criminals and executed the verdicts, and continued efforts to ensure welfare
for the commoners through establishing Bangladesh's rights in the sea, and resolving long-pending land boundary disputes with India.
The 14-party alliance government led by Sheikh Hasina has created history by assuming the state power for three consecutive times by the general elections on December 30 in 2018, and since then, it has been running the government successfully, he said.
Despite having various obstacles, the President said, Bangladesh is moving forward through the people-oriented activities under the bold and visionary leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
With continued growth, per capita income is increasing while the poverty is declining, he said, adding that construction work of the Padma Bridge with the government's own funds is nearing completion.
Construction works of Metrorail, Payra Deep Seaport, Karnaphuli Tunnel, Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport's Third Terminal and Rooppur Nuclear
Power Plant are also progressing uninterruptedly, the President said. To turn the country into a happy and prosperous 'Sonar Bangla', she has taken far-sighted programmes like 'Vision 2041' and 'Delta Plan-2100' in line with
the successful implementation of 'Vision 2021', Abdul Hamid added. "These groundbreaking programmes of Sheikh Hasina for democracy, development and people's welfare are being considered as role models throughout the world today," he said, adding Bangladesh has already evolved into a developing country from a least developed country.
"Last year, we celebrated the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the golden jubilee of Bangladesh's independence at home and abroad. The presence of the heads of states and governments of different countries and sending greeting messages at these events brightened the country's image," the President said.
On the occasion of the 'Mujib Year', he said, a huge number of landless and homeless people in the country are being provided with housing, which has created a new trend in the concept of poverty alleviation for the destitute people all over the world.
Despite the negative impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the world economy, Abdul Hamid said, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's timely and courageous actions have enabled the government to cope with the Covid-19 impacts and sustain economic growth.
The country's economy has turned around due to the government's various socio-economic and investment-oriented projects, programs and activities, he added.
If this progress of sustainable development continues, Bangladesh will stand with head high in the world as a developed and prosperous country by 2041, In Sha Allah, the President expressed hope.
"On the occasion of Bangabandhu's daughter Sheikh Hasina's Homecoming Day, I wish good health, longevity, happiness and well-being for herself and all her family members along with the continued success of the government," Abdul Hamid added.
On May 17 in 1981, Sheikh Hasina returned to the country after a long exile.
A large number of people had gathered outside the Kurmitola Airport in Dhaka to receive Sheikh Hasina upon her arrival in the country.
They had come from every corner of the country and the whole thoroughfare from the Farmgate point to Kurmitola in the city was full of a jubilant crowd.
"I have come to stay beside the people of Bangladesh. I have taken part in the struggle for freedom. I have not come to be the leader of the Awami League. I want to stay beside you as your sister, as your daughter, and as a worker of Awami League, who believes in the ideals of Bangabandhu," she told a huge mass gathering at Manik Mia avenue on the day.
Earlier, Awami League in its February 14-16 council meeting in 1981 elected Sheikh Hasina as the president of the party.