Tuesday, September 29th, 2020
PM’S BIRTHDAY SPECIAL: A Tribute to Sheikh Hasina —The Indomitable Leader of Bangladesh
September 29th, 2020 at 1:30 pm
PM’S BIRTHDAY SPECIAL: A Tribute to Sheikh Hasina —The Indomitable Leader of Bangladesh

by Omer Selim Sher in Ottawa;

On the 74th birthday of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, eldest daughter of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, it brings to our mind her political wisdom and personality, by which she has taken herself to a stage where no political figure could from a country like Bangladesh could ever imagine.

The world and her political opponents also could not think that she would have such a firm hold on her ruling Awami League. Her enemies and opposition also acknowledge that Bangladesh now has an indomitable leader after decades.

She did not come to politics in a normal way. The Bangladesh Awami League had to shoulder the responsibility of accepting the cruel reality. In carrying out her duties, she is moving forward by pointing the finger at many conspiracies inside and outside the party. So far 19 attempts have been made to assassinate her. If she can be killed, the spirit in which the independence of this country came can be shattered once again like August 15. The rule of the country will again fall into the hands of anti-independence forces.

She is now serving the country for the 4th term and for the 3rd time in a row. Next to her name is the title “Mother of Humanity”. She also set an example in establishing world peace on the Rohingya issue. Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has received the “International Achievement Award Special Recognition for Outstanding Leadership” and the “Champion of Skill Development for Youth Award” for her visionary and prudent leadership.

Bangladesh land acquisition compensation
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina

The people’s support for Awami League is 63.5 percent while the support for Sheikh Hasina is 66 percent (IRI survey). She has surpassed her party behind in popularity. Sheikh Hasina’s party is popular because of her popularity. There is no other example in the world where a party leader is more popular than the party. This is where Sheikh Hasina is incomparable. She has taken herself to such heights that she is now compared to the world leaders. She is ranked 29th in the list of the most powerful women in the world. All this has been possible due to her strong political wisdom and personality.

Political researchers and historians believe that her zero tolerance against militancy, Bangladesh’s progress in the economy, ensuring the punishment of Razakars, prosecuting Bangabandhu’s assassins and the friendly foreign policy she is pursuing in the politics of the subcontinent have skyrocketed her popularity. While many leaders of the Awami League are suffering from existential crisis due to their controversial activities and are criticizing the party, the people of this country are relying on one and only Sheikh Hasina. Again, she has proved that there is no other alternative to her.

In 2009 Sheikh Hasina took the lead of a failed state (Bangladesh became champion in corruption during 2001-2007) to prosperity from the black clutches of militancy. Now Bangladesh has moved away from failed state to most prosperous state with average GDP growth rate of 8% and during the COVID-19 is 5.24%. Ignoring the eyes of the western world, showing their thumbs up to their non-cooperation, all the enviable progress that Bangladesh is making today has been made possible by the leadership of Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. She is managing the country with one hand and the party with the other. She is the most successful president of Awami League after ’75 and also the most successful statesperson. She has no pause in carrying out dual responsibility with all the courage’s and self determination.

She has remained steadfast in her ideals and beliefs. Did not panic in danger. Has overcome adversity. Even after being in power for a long time, egoism and intimacy did not get her. She kept her feet on the ground all the time. Impossibly brave again fiercely compassionate. One point to be note that she has no mercy for rogues or thugs. But on the other hand, she opens her heart and very kind to the oppressed. Most importantly, she understands the language of the people. She understands and foresees the hopes of the people and their aspirations. When the heads of state or government go the distance of the stars from the people. Sheikh Hasina is quite the opposite. He picked up the phone of a stranger. Listen to him. He has been able to establish a connection with the people. And that is why Sheikh Hasina’s popularity has not diminished even after being in power for than a decade. Rather, she is the one who has no choice now. Sheikh Hasina is like Bangladesh now. All the people of the country believe that Sheikh Hasina is Sheikh Hasina’s alternative.

My tribute to Prime Minister Sheikh on her birthday.

I wish her a very, very long life to steer Bangladesh to a country free from militancy, free from communalism and a prosperous economy.  She has to live long for the country, for the poor and downtrodden people of the country.

Joy Bangla, Joy Bangabandhu, Joyetu Sheikh Hasina.

Omer Sher is a retired Professor of Economics at Algonquin College, Ottawa, Canada and a researcher on politics in South Asia.