By Syed Altefat Hossain
TETULIA, Panchagarh, Jan 26, 2023 (BSS) - Once Iqra Akter Eva, a sixth grader, used to live in a rented room with her family at highly crowded community housing in Tetulia as they did not have a permanent shelter, resulting in hampering her study.
Now, she is dreaming of becoming a doctor after getting a house of Ashrayan-2 Prakalpa a few months ago at Mandul Para (Moniku) of Buraburi Union here, thanks to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
Eva's family used to lead a miserable life in different rented houses both in Tetulia and Gazipur as her father Md Ilias (52) worked at a tiles factory in Gazipur.
"We were compelled to live in different rented houses since we had no permanent abode. Once we would have to shift our families to one rented house from another and my study got hampered. I could not concentrate on my study," Eva told this correspondent during his visit to the Ashrayan project site.
Now, she said, as they got a permanent home under the project, she is enjoying a suitable atmosphere for her education there, which helped keep her dream alive.
"Now I am dreaming of becoming a doctor. I do believe my dream will come true one day," Eva added, depicting a ray of hope in her face.
As a landless one, Eva's father Ilias had no capacity to buy a piece of land to build a house since he had to spend all the money he earned to bear the expenses of his three-member family. But he did not forget to give efforts to continue his daughter's study despite living in extreme poverty.
During the visit to Eva's home, it was seen that she was nursing their homestead vegetable garden with her mother Lovely Akter while her father was helping them.
"We are now in a better condition as Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina gifted us a concrete-made house with the ownership of the land where the house was built," she said.
Eva said Panchagarh Deputy Commissioner has gifted a bicycle for her outstanding results in the annual exams of Class V.
"Now I go to school riding on this bicycle. Thanks to DC sir for giving me such a wonderful bicycle," Eva said.
Like Eva's family, 37 landless families got permanent houses- a concrete-made two-room accommodation having a kitchen, a toilet and a veranda on a two decimal of land- in Mandul Para Ashrayan-2 Prakalpa.
Panchagarh DC Md Jahurul Islam said the district has been announced landless and homeless-free on July 21, 2022 while handing over 26,229 more houses to landless families across the country under the third phase of the project.
He said they found a total of 4,850 landless and homeless families in the district. "We've accommodated all of them in 176 spots," the DC added.
According to project officials, as part of the government's intensified campaign to ensure a permanent home for all, so far 546,681 landless and homeless families have been rehabilitated across the country under the project since 1997.