BNP is frustrated or ashamed over Padma Bridge: Hasan

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Dhaka, Dec 12: Information Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud today said there are questions among people whether BNP and others, who raised different allegations in meetings and seminars over Padma Bridge, are frustrated or ashamed as the construction of the bridge has almost completed.

“The countrymen are happy as the Padma Bridge is almost completed. Now they (people) have a question whether BNP and others are ashamed or frustrated over the bridge,” he told journalists at his official residence in the city’s Mintu Road.

Earlier, the minister addressed a seminar through online platform organized by Chattogram District Administration titled ‘Jodio Manchi Duratho, Tobuo Achi Sangjuktha’ (We remain connected though maintaining distance).

Chattogram Deputy Commissioner (DC) Ilias Hossain presided over the seminar.

Hasan said, in the beginning, the World Bank had raised an allegation of corruption over the Padma Bridge project though the bank didn’t disburse a single penny. At that time, BNP, different research organizations and economists had also raised different allegations along with the World Bank about Padma Bridge and they did everything what they could, he added.

But it was proved in a Canadian court that the allegations of the World Bank were false, said Hasan, also Awami League joint general secretary.

In later though the WB wanted to finance the project, the Prime Minister refused their proposal and decided to construct the Padma Bridge with own fund, he said.

He said BNP and others gave negative statements continuously. But they are no longer heard after the two sides of the Padma were connected on December 10.

For this, the countrymen are raising questions whether they (BNP and others) are frustrated or ashamed, the minister said. Their (BNP and others) silence proved that they are really frustrated when everyone congratulated Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her party, he added.

Hasan said the BNP chief told the people that Awami League could not construct the bridge or even if they can, no one will cross the bridge. So, the people have a question now – in which way BNP will cross the bridge, he added.

In the meeting, the minister said the world is now in ICT-based fourth industrial revolution. Bangladesh is now moving ahead with the revolution though the country was behind in the last three revolutions. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina had declared to build ‘Digital Bangladesh’ in 2008 while the neighbouring country-India declared it in 2016 or the United Kingdom in 2018, he added.

And later, she turned the country into ‘Digital Bangladesh’ under her dynamic leadership, said Hasan, adding about 11 crore people are using internet while employment opportunities have been created for about 10 lakh people.

He said in this sector, the export income is 26 million dollars in 2008 and it is now one thousand million or 1 billion. Bangladesh is one of the few countries in the world that have seen positive growth during in the Corona epidemic, he added.