Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina attends SSF’s 38th anniversary

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Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina, Special Security Force

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina attended the 38th foundation anniversary of the Special Security Force (SSF) at Shapla Hall in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).

Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister emphasized her profound connection with the people of Bangladesh and underscored the importance of not isolating her from the public, whom she described as her “life-life”.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s speech at the SSF anniversary celebration was a testament to her deep-rooted bond with the people of Bangladesh. She candidly expressed that being isolated from the public would be tantamount to a death sentence for her, highlighting the emotional and psychological sustenance she derives from her interaction with the masses.

“If you make me isolated from the people, it doesn’t need to shoot me to death. I will die anyway because they (people) are my life-blood”, the Prime Minister stated. This powerful assertion reflects her enduring commitment to her constituents and her belief in the symbiotic relationship between a leader and the people.

The Prime Minister’s address to the SSF personnel was not just a ceremonial speech but a clarion call to ensure that the connection between the political leadership and the populace remains unbroken. “We do politics. I have no other strength. People are my only strength. We do politics with the power of the people. So, make sure that I will not be isolated from the public”, she urged the SSF personnel.

The ceremony was attended by several dignitaries, including the PM’s Security Affairs Adviser Major General (retired) Tarique Ahmed Siddique – Photo: PMO

Sheikh Hasina reminisced about times when she was out of power, recalling the unwavering support of the people. In a touching anecdote, she recounted how a humble rickshaw-puller bought a piece of land in her name with his hard-earned money, a gesture of solidarity and support. She later built a house on that land and returned it to the rickshaw-puller, emphasizing her gratitude and commitment to the people.

While the Prime Minister underscored her bond with the public, she also highlighted the critical role of the SSF in ensuring the security of VVIPs. She called on the SSF personnel to perform their duties with “firmness, efficiency, discipline, honesty, responsibility, and topmost professionalism”.

She stressed that without these attributes, it would be impossible to achieve success in their mission.

Sheikh Hasina also expressed her concern for the safety and security of the SSF personnel, acknowledging the risks they undertake in protecting her and other dignitaries. She recalled the numerous attempts on her life, including the horrific August 21, 2004 grenade attack that claimed the lives of 22 leaders and activists, including Ivy Rahman, the wife of late President Zillur Rahman.

In her address, the Prime Minister highlighted the steps her government has taken to enhance the capabilities and safety of the SSF. She noted that her government first established a shooting range for the SSF in 1996, which is now being modernized with updated equipment. This initiative underscores the government’s commitment to providing the best resources and training to the security forces.

Beyond security, Sheikh Hasina outlined her government’s vision for a prosperous and secure Bangladesh. She mentioned the strides made in transforming Bangladesh into a Digital Bangladesh and the ongoing efforts to evolve into a smart country by 2041. The implementation of the Delta Plan-2100, she noted, is aimed at ensuring better and more secure lives for future generations.

Sheikh Hasina’s vision for Bangladesh is not confined to immediate gains but extends to long-term sustainable development. The Delta Plan-2100 is a comprehensive framework aimed at securing the future of the nation in the face of climate change and other challenges. By focusing on sustainable development and leveraging technology, the government aims to improve the quality of life for all citizens.

The ceremony was attended by several dignitaries, including the PM’s Security Affairs Adviser Major General (retired) Tarique Ahmed Siddique and PM’s Principal Secretary Md Tofazzel Hossain Miah. SSF DG Major General AKM Nazmul Hasan delivered welcome address, reflecting on the evolution of the SSF since its inception on June 15, 1986, when it was originally named the Presidential Security Force (PSF).

The 38th foundation anniversary of the SSF was more than a celebratory event; it was a reaffirmation of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s enduring bond with the people of Bangladesh and her unwavering commitment to their welfare. Her heartfelt address underscored the essence of leadership rooted in public service and the crucial role of security forces in safeguarding this bond. As Bangladesh moves towards a future of digital transformation and sustainable development, the symbiotic relationship between the leader and the people will undoubtedly remain the cornerstone of its progress.

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