Emphasising that women must create their own fate and personal destiny, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said women can do all outside works maintaining decency as religion Islam gives them that liberty.“Maintaining decency, we could go anywhere and do all of our works — religion Islam gives that liberty and scope to women …women have to create their own fate and work out their own future,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina said this while addressing a function at Osmani Memorial Auditorium. The Ministry of Children and Women Affairs organised the function on the occasion of ‘Begum Rokeya Day’, marking the 136th birthday of the pioneer of women renaissance.
The Prime Minister said the all rights of women have been ensured properly in Islam. “When it comes to wealth or workplace, there’s no scope to refrain the womenfolk from their workplaces,” she added.
The Prime Minister mentioned that the first person who embraced Islam preached by the Prophet Hazrat Mohammad (PBUH) was his wife Bibi Khadiza (R), and she was a businesswoman. Another wife of the Prophet (PBUH) Bibi Ayesha used to be present in war fields with the Prophet (PBUH).
“These are the great examples for us, Islam has given that scope and we have to keep that in mind,” she said emphasising women must create their own fate and work out their own future.
“Women’s self-confidence will grow up when they’ll do their own works, and this self-confidence will open up the path for them to earn their self-dignity,” the Prime Minister told the function.
Sheikh Hasina said her government paid special attention to the welfare of poor, marginal, under privileged and uncared women of society to expedite women empowerment.
She mentioned that Begum Rokeya had dreamt of a society where women would be magistrates, judges and barristers and that has come true as many women are already there in such posts.
The Prime Minister said her government for the first time appointed women secretary, women SPs, OCs, and women judges, and they are doing excellent in their jobs.
She also mentioned that the Prime Minister, the Deputy Leader of the House, the Opposition Leader, the Speaker and a number of ministers are women in Bangladesh now which is indeed a rare example in the world.
Hasina said Bangladesh has become a role model of development to the world community due to massive women development in the country, including adoption of women development policy, women development, expansion of their work areas, bringing the poor and distressed women under social safety network and empowerment of the all levels of women.
To build women leadership from the grassroots level, she said her government has kept seats reserved for the women at union level local government elections, and over 45,000 women contested the first elections for 12,000 posts despite some initial obstacles.
Bangladeshi women are also working across the world as the present government arranged short training programmes for the aspirant migrant workers on languages and laws of the countries concerned and on the use of electronic appliances, she mentioned.
She also referred to the increase in maternity leave to six months, and establishment of daycare centers to help working mothers, mentioning mother’s name mandatory in any document, enactment of Family Violence (prevention and protection) Act, Child Marriage Prevention Act, setting up eight hostels for working women, VGD programme in 4547 unions, and mother, and community clinic for rural women.
State Minister for Women and Children Affairs Meher Afroze Chumki presided over the function, while ministry secretary Nasima Begum delivered the welcome address.
Earlier, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina handed over Rokeya Padak-2015 to late educationist Dr Taibun Nahar Rashid and noted fashion designer Bibi Russell for their outstanding contributions to their respective fields.
Ali Asgar Khurshid, son of late Dr Taibun Nahar Rashid, received the Padak from the Prime Minister on behalf of his mother.
Later, the Prime Minister witnessed a colourful cultural programme.