Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday reaffirmed her government’s goal of illuminating every house of the country by next year and urged the people to be frugal with electricity use.
“We have taken up massive programmes to celebrate the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in 2020 and the golden jubilee of the country’s independence in 2021. Our goal is to light up every house of the country by 2021,” she said.
The PM was addressing a programme marking the inauguration of cent percent electrification in 31 upazilas of 18 districts.
She also opened two power plants, 11 grid sub-stations and six new transmission lines through videoconferencing from the Gono Bhaban.
Mentioning that the government was providing a huge amount of subsidy to the power sector, Hasina reiterated her call to the people not to misuse electricity.
“A huge amount of money is spent for producing electricity. We’re now importing LNG and we are still providing a huge amount of subsidy to the power sector. But all have to keep in mind that it is not possible to give subsidy continually.”
The premier said the government has already been able to provide electricity to 97.5 percent people of the country and it was hopeful about giving power to 100 percent people by 2021.
She said her government has planned to generate 24,000 MW electricity by 2021, 40,000 MW by 2030 and 60,000 MW by 2041 for the overall economic development of the country.
“We are setting up 100 special economic zones across the country for further industrialisation and generating more employments. Electricity will be needed for this.”
Hasina said the government has also established Digital Bangladesh. “With the increasing use of ICT in the country, the demand for power will go up.”
Noting that the government has multifaceted electricity production, she said power is now being produced from gas, coal, and solar panel.
The PM said her government’s development works were not only capital- or town-centric. “We want to transform every village into a town by reaching civic amenities to the houses of rural people.”
Hasina later exchanged views with cross section of people, including public representatives, deputy commissioners, superintendents of police, teachers, students, imams, housewives as well as users of electricity from five districts — Noakhali, Patuakhali, Cumilla, Gopalganj and Manikganj.
Talking about the novel coronavirus pandemic, she said the entire world was suffering due to it.
When a student from Noakhali exchanged views with her, the premier said the study of students is being affected due to the closure of educational institutions. “We have made arrangements for taking classes virtually and through television.”
Belal Hossain, a resident of Noakhali, sang a song on Bangabandhu.
Earlier, the PM opened cent percent electrification in 31 upazilas of 18 districts. The upazilas are Nabinagar, Sarail and Ashuganj in Brahmanbaria, Faridganj and Kachua in Chandpur, Barura and Muradnagar in Cumilla, Bhanga and Boalmari in Faridpur, Sadullapur in Gaibandha, Jhenidah Sadar in Jhenidah, Manikganj Sadar, Daulatpur, Singair and Shibalaya in Manikganj, Rajnagar in Moulvibazar, Manda, Dhamoirhat and Sapahar in Naogaon, Domar in Nilphamari, Begumganj in Noakhali, Mirzaganj in Patuakhali, Rajbari Sadar, Pangsha and Baliakandi in Rajbari, Baghmara in Rajshahi, Satkhira Sadar in Satkhira, Zakiganj and Osmaninagar in Sylhet, Raypura in Narsingdi and Kalkini in Madaripur district.
The two power plants opened by the premier are 110 MW Confidence Power Bogura-1 Ltd and 113 MW HF Power Ltd, Noakhali.
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid was connected to the programme from his ministry office.
PM’s Principal Secretary Ahmad Kaikaus moderated the function while the secretaries concerned to the PM were present at the Gono Bhaban.