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Military, civilian admin should work together, says Army Chief

  • Staff Correspondent
  • 21 January, 2022 12:00 AM
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Chief of Army Staff General SM Shafiuddin Ahmed on Thursday underscored the need for the military and civilian administration to work together to build ‘Sonar Bangla’.

“The goal of building ‘Golden Bangla’ can’t be achieved if the military administration and the civilian

administration don’t work together,” he said.

The army chief was talking to reporters after attending a session on the third day of the Deputy Commissioners’ conference at the Osmani Memorial Auditorium in the capital.

General Shafiuddin said assistance to the civil administration is an important factor in Bangladesh Army fulfilling its traditional responsibilities.

Asked what issues he emphasised during the meeting, he said, “An environment is very important to carry out any work together. Good relations are important for a good environment. I’ve focused on strengthening the communications. If the communications improve, it’ll reduce the gap. We’ve discussed the areas. We all agree that there’s no alternative to it (enhancing communication).”

“We’ll have to work together. At present we have a very good relationship. We want to go further with the civilian administration by capitalising on it,” the army chief added.

Replying to a query whether there was any proposal from the DCs, he said, “There’s no specific proposal. But we’ve discussed some proposals for which we have the potential to enhance our civil-military relations.”

Responding to another question about army being on the election field, General Shafiuddin said their first responsibility is to protect the sovereignty of the country.

In addition, they carry out nation-building activities and disaster management work in aid to the civil power and support the law enforcement agencies, he said. “We’re also performing a special duty in the Chattogram Hill Tracts. We’re on duty at the FDMN camp in Cox’s Bazar. We, the Bangladesh Army, have been serving abroad from within our constitution.”

“A large number of Bangladesh Army troops are working in Kuwait and earning a lot of foreign currency for the country. Bangladesh Army has been recognised by the United Nations as the No. 1 peacekeeper in the world,” the army chief said.

“We’ve seen that the assistance of the civilian administration is an important factor in carrying out these activities. Whenever the civilian administration thinks that Bangladesh Army can stand by them under the directives of the government, we’ll respond to their call. Of course, we’ll sit next to them and fulfil our responsibilities,” he said.