Saying she is moved immensely by unnatural death of any child across the globe, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today sounded a note of warning against child repression.
"We are taking measures to ensure their [children] security. We are giving special attention on taking immediate action once repression on children in any form takes place. We want our children to be safe and [be] good human beings," she said while virtually inaugurating the World Children's Day and Child Rights Week-2020.
The premier opened the event as the chief guest from her official Gono Bhaban residence through a video conference. The event was organised by the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs from the Bangladesh Shishu Academy auditorium.
Recalling the assassination of her 10-year-old brother Sheikh Russell, along with other children and the Father of the Nation and most of his family members on August 15, 1975, she said, "I am seriously shocked whenever I witness unnatural death of any child, no matter if it takes place at home or abroad or on the Bay of Bengal or beside the Mediterranean Sea."
She reiterated her desire to turn the world into a suitable and peaceful place for children.
In this connection, Hasina said, "We have said that today's children are the future of the nation. Yes, they are indeed, but we have to build the future generation as good human beings by creating scopes to utilise their talent, knowledge and intellect."
She went on to say that it would be possible only then when a congenial atmosphere will be created for them with ensuring basic needs including proper education and better healthcare services, alongside making arrangements for them to get involved in sports and culture to give them a beautiful and developed life.
The PM also unveiled covers of a number of 25 children's books written on the life and works of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, "Amra Ekechi 100 Mujib", a book published with selected pictures drawn by children, and "Amra Likhechi 100 Mujib", another book published with writings of children, on the occasion of the 'Mujib Year' marking the Bangabandhu's birth centenary.
At the outset of the function, the premier witnessed a colourful cultural programme performed by the children.
State Minister for Women and Children Affairs Fazilatun Nessa Indira and Representative of UNICEF Bangladesh Veera Mendonca addressed the function while Bangladesh Shishu Academy Chairman Lucky Enam gave a welcome address.
Nabid Rahman Turjyo and Hridika Noor Siddique, trainees of Bangladesh Shishu Academy, spoke on the occasion on behalf of the children.
Hasina said her government has aired recorded lessons for the students on the Sangsad TV and arranged classes online as the academic life of the children should not be hampered.
Referring to Bangabandhu's advice to the children to read attentively and be worthy citizens of the country, she said, "Children have to pay attention to their studies as no contribution could be made for the country without education."
The premier also stressed the need for making arrangements of sports and cultural activities for the children alongside studies to make them worthy citizens.
She said that her government has been building mini-stadiums at every upazila across the country.
The PM also appreciated the children who earned gold medals at the Special Olympics.
Hasina said her government has been untiringly working to ensure child rights including proper education and healthcare services following the footsteps of the country's founding president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman as he had formulated the 'Children Act' in the country in 1974 to ensure children's rights. He (Bangabandhu) also included child rights in the country's constitution, she added.
She said that the Father of the Nation made primary education free for all and established a 10-bed hospital at every union to ensure education and healthcare services for all.