Sheikh Hasina said the government has framed the Bangladesh Perspective Plan and two five-year plans to speed up the socioeconomic development by alleviating poverty and removing disparity. “Currently, we’re working to frame a 20-year perspective plan,” she said, seeking cooperation of all to this end.

The prime minister said the government has a goal to turn Bangladesh into a middle income country by 2021. “We’ve already been upgraded to a lower middle income country, but we’re not satisfied with it in any way,” she said

She added: “The word lower doesn’t suit us as we’re a victorious nation and we’ve liberated the country through liberation war … we must always hold the top.”

Sheikh Hasina said her government assuming office again in 2009 undertook planned uplift programmes and completed many development works in the last nine and a half years.

She said the unprecedented development that Bangladesh witnessed in the socioeconomic sector has been possible due to maintaining continuity of the government.

As a strategy of overall initiatives, she said, the government enacted the National Integrity Strategy to establish good governance and it is being implemented and monitored in 57 organisations.

The premier said her government after taking office is regularly giving promotion to the government employees by evaluating their merit, qualifications, efficiency and experience.

“The retirement age of the public employees of all classes has been increased to 59 from 57 while the retirement age of freedom fighters employees has been raised to 60,” she said.

Sheikh Hasina said the salary and allowances of the government employees has been enhanced by up to 123 percent and the Public Administration Medals have been introduced for creative and innovative works of the employees of the republic.

To earn professional efficiency, she said, various facilities including training at home and abroad for the government employees have been increased.

Sheikh Hasina said the ultimate goal of the government is to build a happy, prosperous and just and knowledge-based Digital Bangladesh, free from hunger, poverty, illiteracy, militancy and communalism.

“With efforts of all of you, Bangladesh will emerge as a middle income country by 2021 and a developed and prosperous one by 2041 Insha Allah,” she said.

Later, the prime minister witnessed a cultural function performed by renowned artistes of the country.