Factories outside economic zones and designated places would not get new gas and electricity connections, said State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid yesterday.
“Refrain from making proposals for setting up industries outside the planned areas,” he told deputy commissioners at the DC conference in the capital.
“The decision will go into effect right now,” he told reporters after a session on the second day of the conference.
This year, the annual conference of divisional and deputy commissioners is being held over five days instead of the usual three.
When his attention was drawn to DCs’ request for power distribution line expansion, Nasrul told journalists that acquisition of required land was a problem.
“The government is preparing a land acquisition policy. After that we will be able to expand the distribution line rapidly,” he said.
He said the government would disconnect power and gas lines to government and autonomous entities if they did not pay their outstanding bills. They owe the government between Tk 8,000 crore and Tk 9,000 crore, he added.
The National Board of Revenue (NBR) termed “positive” the DCs’ proposal for forming revenue collection committees, led by UNOs and DCs, to increase the revenue collection at local level, said Mashiur Rahman, economic affairs adviser to the prime minister.
“But the NBR said it needs more details on the proposal and that it would decide only after getting details,” he said after a session with the DCs.
The NBR is recruiting more tax officials at district and upazila levels to increase revenue collection. After that, it would think about forming such committees, he said.
Mashiur said there was no discussion in the session on the DCs request for Tk 1 crore allocation for each district to observe “special days” and establishing “Janaprashasan Bank” for administration cadres.
He said the government would consider the proposals when it gets them through proper channels.
Following a session with the DCs, Education Minister Dipu Moni told journalists that the government was considering launching “Education Television” channel.
She said lessons by renowned teachers would be aired there to improve education quality.
“We have had a discussion on setting up Education Television. We will look into what we can do regarding the matter.
“It will be better to have Education TV so that classes of renowned teachers could be telecast. Students and teachers of all areas would be benefited. With this, all students would have equal knowledge on a topic,” she said when asked if the government would send good teachers from urban areas to rural schools as guest teachers.
Asked about the DCs request for specialised university for civil servant, she said, “We will consider the matter if we get the proposal.”
The minister asked the DCs to take steps to stop coaching centre business, and illegal guidebooks, and to ensure quality school infrastructure.
“We also asked the DCs to keep an eye on sexual harassment of students. Carry out awareness programmes at schools and elsewhere against this,” she added.
Information Minister Mohammad Hasan Mahmud after a session said the government would register “true” online news portals after scrutinising their applications.
After a session with the DCs, he said over 8,000 news portals have sought registration.
A DC requested specific guidelines for journalists of online news portals.
The minister said misuse of Digital Security Act was discussed in the session.
DCs MEET PRESIDENT
President M Abdul Hamid asked DCs to serve as real “public servants” and give priority to greater interests of the country.
“In your respective workplaces, keep the difference between responsibilities and powers . . . Don’t misuse power. Take government services to the people’s doorsteps,” he said at the Durbar Hall of Bangabhaban yesterday evening.
He said the DCs must provide effective and proper leadership to fulfill the people’s fundamental rights, and ensure social safety and women empowerment.
He ordered them to take steps to stop the wrongdoings of vested quarters as the paddy famers were being deprived of fair prices.
Referring to different development projects in housing, education, expansion of industry-based agriculture, medicare services, electricity, gas, water and sewerage system, the president asked the DCs to turn upazila towns into modern townships.