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No scope to deter women from doing job: PM

DHAKA, Dec 9, 2015 (BSS) - Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today said there is no scope to deter a country's woman from doing job in any plea as Islam has given the opportunity to the women and guaranteed their rights in the working place.

She said women can do every work maintaining modesty. Islam has given them that opportunity. Islam is the only religion which guaranteed the rights of the women either it's in the wealth or in the working place, she said giving example of Bibi Khadeja, who was the first female adopted Islam, also a business person in profession.

Bibi Ayesha, wife of the Prophet (SM) always remained beside Prophet in the war field, the prime minister noted saying it's the best example before us and we always should keep this in mind.

The Prime Minister said this while inaugurating Begum Rokeya Day and distributing Begum Rokeya Padak-2015 at Osmani Memorial Auditorium here this morning.

This year the prestigious award has gone to world famous fashion designer Bibi Russell and noted educationist, philanthropist and social worker Dr Taibun Nahar Rashid.

Bibi Russell was given the award for her contribution in aesthetic fashion designing with local component and Dr Taibun Nahar got the award for their outstanding contribution to spreading female education, ensuring women rights and women empowerment.

Bibi Russell herself and Ali Asgor Khurshid, son of late Taibun Nahar received the award from the prime minister.

The government introduced the award in 1995 after the name of Begum Rokeya, a pioneer of women's liberation movement in the undivided Bengal who was a leading feminist writer and social worker during the early 20th century and mostly famous for her efforts for gender equality and female education.

The Ministry of Children and Women Affairs organized the award giving ceremony with State Minister for Women and Children Affairs Meher Afroze Chumki in the chair. Secretary of the ministry Nasima Begum delivered the welcome address at the function, while Bibi Russell also spoke expressing her feeling on getting the award.

Paying rich tributes to Begum Rokeya, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said she was beacon of women renaissance and an institution of female education. "Her ideology, writings, strong mentality and working spirit still inspire us during our hard time though Rokeya herself could not attend matriculation due to social barrier," Sheikh Hasina said.

Congratulating the award recipients Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said she is very much glad to have the opportunity of giving the Rokeya Padak to Bibi Russell and Dr Dr Taibun Nahar Rashid, two outstanding ladies, made their contribution to the emancipation of womenfolk.

The prime minister mentioned the service of Bibi Russell in Nishbethganj of Rangpur to help the 'sataranji' producing people for improving their socio-economic condition. People of Nishbethganj fought against the Pakistani occupation force with their arrows and bows during War of Liberation in 1971. BNP and Jamaat unlashed atrocities on them in 2001 in the same style of Pak force, she said.

Sheikh Hasina praised the support of Bibi Russell to the people of Nishbethganj saying it was one of the outstanding jobs she has done, and in her reputation as a world famous female fashion designer of Bangladesh we are very glad.

The prime minister also highlighted the service of Dr Taibun Nahar Rashid to the society and said Dr Nahar, a commander of Jatiya Rakki Bahini in 1948, served in different categories before and after liberation. She went to hide for giving training to female workers during non-cooperation movement in 1971. In 1972, she had given guard of honour to Bangabandhu on the Independence Day in 1972.

Recalling the contribution and sacrifice of the country's womenfolk in the war of Liberation, the prime minister said we have got independence at the cost of their sacrifice and we have got position in the global society as an independent nation.

Sheikh Hasina said emergence and awakening of womenfolk in Bangladesh is crucial as we don't want entering the country into another dark age again. Begum Rokeya has shown us the path on which the womenfolk of Bangladesh is moving ahead overcoming many obstacles.

"Begum Rokeya had dreamt of social order where women will have an acceptable position in the society. She wished that women would be educated and sit in the highest position of judiciary and administration. Her dream became true and Bangladesh's women have created their position at every level of the society crossing many barriers fulfilling the dream of Begum Rokeya, Sheikh Hasina said.

The prime minister said Father of the Nation Bangabandhu had taken massive steps for women emancipation and their political, social and economic development side by side rehabilitation and treatment of the mothers and sisters who suffered immense brutality of the Pak force and their local collaborators.

But it was a misfortune for the nation that within a short span of time after independence Bangabandhu was brutally killed along with his wife Fazilatunnesa Mujib, who also had made huge contribution for rehabilitation of the women suffered during the war, she said.

Listing the steps taken by her government for development of womenfolk, the prime minister said they need to stand on own feet for their social, political and economic emancipation. "The government is making relentless efforts to create efficient women workforce at grassroots level and their empowerment at every level of the society," she said.

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