Sunday, 29 January, 2023

Bangladesh Navy set to become ‘builder’ from ‘buyer’: PM

Bangladesh Navy set to become ‘builder’ from ‘buyer’: PM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday asked Bangladesh Navy to stay prepared for dealing with any natural disaster as well as protecting the country’s sovereignty, reports UNB.

“Being emboldened with the qualities of integrity, leadership and self-sacrifice, you’ll always have to remain prepared to protect the country’s independence and sovereignty as well as face any disaster, standing shoulder to shoulder with the members of the Army and Air Force. Bangladesh is a disaster-prone country,” she said.

The prime minister was addressing the President Parade of the passing cadets of Midshipmen 2020 Alfa Batch and Direct Entry Officer 2022 Bravo Batch of Bangladesh Naval Academy (BNA) in Chattogram's Patenga.

She said the Bangladesh Navy always stands beside the people during natural disasters and continues to conduct rescue operations competently. “I want our officers to do the work with utmost sincerity,” she said.

Referring to the graduating officers, the PM said, “You are the future helmsmen of our Navy in protecting the country’s sovereignty and security.”

She asked them to discharge the responsibilities towards the country, being imbued with patriotism, and equipped with the senses of discipline and integrity.

Govt Modernizing Armed Forces to Resist Attack

Sheikh Hasina said her government has been working to modernize the armed forces with a view to making them capable of resisting possible attacks.

She said Bangladesh will not engage in a war with anyone, rather it will maintain friendly relations with all. “Being an independent country, we will have to be prepared to protect our independence and sovereignty. I want to develop our armed forces, equipped with modern technological knowledge and advanced equipment, so that we can resist any attack from external foes and can win any war,” she added.

She said her government is putting emphasis on training of the armed forces and has developed infrastructures to this end.  Bangladesh Navy Set to Become Builder from Buyer 

The prime minister said Bangladesh Navy is turning into a builder of military ships and systems which will generate employment alongside saving foreign currency.

She said Bangladesh is building ships at local shipyards for its own use. Bangladesh Navy has completed the construction of five patrol crafts and two large patrol crafts in Khulna shipyard. The manufacturing of five more patrol crafts is in progress, she said.

“Our Navy has prepared IFF (identification of friend and foe) system for three forces. Now, the Navy is going to become a ‘builder’ (of military ships and systems) force from ‘buyer’. This will save foreign currencies, develop local technology, create jobs and enhance the skills,” she said.

The PM said the Bangladesh Navy was entrusted with the overall security of the Bangabandhu Tunnel under the Karnaphuli river, which is the first such tunnel in South Asia.

She said construction of BNS Sher-e-Bangla is in progress and a permanent submarine base is being developed at Pekua in Cox's Bazar.

Sheikh Hasina said her government formulated and is now implementing the Forces Goal 2030.

In the last 14 years, a total of 31 warships, including 4 frigates, 6 corvettes, 4 large patrol crafts, 5 patrol crafts and 2 training ships were added to the fleet of Bangladesh Navy, she said.

She said the government also established 'Special Warfare Diving and Salvage Command' and Naval Aviation Wing as efficient commando and rescue teams.

“We added two submarines in 2017. As a result, our Navy has today been established as a three-dimensional naval force,” she added.

The PM said Bangladesh Navy provides security to commercial vessels, fishing trawlers, boats and the blue economy-related maritime institutions in sea and coastal areas, including Chattogram and Mongla seaports.

“We are developing the infrastructure of Mongla Commander Flotilla West. Digital technology has also been introduced in the Navy,” she said.

Bangladesh Navy recently hosted the 'International Fleet Review-2022' on the occasion of birth centenary of the Father of Nation and golden jubilee of independence, which has earned a huge appreciation for the navy in national and international arenas.

The premier inspected a splendid parade at the academy parade ground.

At the function, a total of 35 midshipmen of the 2020 Alfa Batch were commissioned, while 6 direct entry officers of the 2022 Bravo Batch graduated.

The PM handed the sword of honour and CNS Gold Medal to the two best all-round midshipmen, while Bir Sreshtho Ruhul Amin Gold medal was handed to the best direct entry officer.