Prime minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday received the Dr Kalam Smriti International Excellence Awards-2019, introduced in memory of eminent scientist and former Indian President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam.
Chief adviser of the Dr Kalam Smriti International Advisory Council ambassador TP Sreenivasan handed over the accolade through a ceremony at the prime minister’s office here.
The award has been conferred upon prime minister Sheikh Hasina as recognition to her commitment for a close and mutually satisfying India-Bangladesh relations, welfare of her people, particularly women and children, and international peace and cooperation, according to a citation read out in the function.
Dedicating the award to the people of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina told the function, ‘You’ve honoured me which means you’ve honoured the people of Bangladesh.’
‘This award will certainly inspire me and my government to strive for the achievement of greater inclusive development for my people while bearing in mind the need to ensure the conservation and protection of our natural ecosystems,’ she said.
The prime minister extended her sincere thanks to the organisers for conferring upon her the Dr Kalam Smriti International Award. The premier congratulated the past recipients of this award in recognition to their work towards attaining sustainable development for their respective countries and for the globe as a whole.
The presidents of the Maldives, Ghana and Mauritius earlier received the prestigious award since its introduction in 2015.
Chairperson of the Dr Kalam Smriti International Deena Das read out a citation.
The citation reads, ‘Dr Kalam Smriti International Excellence Award, instituted in the name of outstanding scientist, visionary, statesman and former President of India Bharat Ratna Dr APJ Abdul Kalam is presented to prime minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina, an architect of modern Bangladesh rapidly progressing towards being Sonar Bangla (Golden Bengal), as envisioned by the country’s founding president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Dr Abdul Kalam as the president of India and Sheikh Hasina as the prime minister of Bangladesh fostered cooperation between India and Bangladesh and worked together for a prosperous world free from poverty, hunger and illiteracy,’ it stated.
‘They share a common vision of a peaceful and prosperous South Asia, free of tension, conflicts and terrorism. The common values of freedom from oppression brought the two peoples together in the liberation of Bangladesh in 1971, which guides us even today,’ it added.
It noted that the award was a testimony to the contribution made by Sheikh Hasina to the common good of mankind, which was a cherished dream of Dr Abdul Kalam, who said, ‘Dream is not that which we see while sleeping, it is something that does not let you sleep.’
At the function, the visiting team of the Dr Kalam Smriti International Excellence Awards presented Kerala traditional saree and ponnada (a piece of cloth) as well as Kalam logo to prime minister Sheikh Hasina.
Dr Kalam Smriti International Excellence Awards is given to honour presidents, statesmen or leaders, who have shown excellence in their field and have shown great vision to achieve the best for their country.
Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen was present on the dais.
Ministers, advisers, lawmakers and senior Awami League leaders and officials of the prime minister’s office were present on the occasion.
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