DHAKA, Sept 28, 2020 (BSS) – Information minister Dr Hasan Mahmud today said the present government is working relentlessly to build equality and knowledge-based society to ensure continued social and economic development of the country.
“Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s government believes not only in infrastructural development but also building a just, equity and knowledge-based society,” the minister said while speaking at a discussion at Agargaon here making the International Access to Information Day (formerly RTI Day).
He added: “Assuming office for the second time through a landslide victory in the 2008 general polls, Sheikh Hasina’s government first enacted the Right to Information (RTI) Act and the Human Rights Commission Act.”
Hasan Mahmud said all government departments have put a lot of information on their respective websites, which is a very positive initiative as it will help citizens to get necessary information within shortest possible time.
State Minister for Information Ministry Dr Md Murad Hasan and Information Secretary Kamrun Nahar were present as special guests at the programme with Chief Information Commissioner Mortuza Ahmed in the chair.
The Information Commission organized the discussion, where former Dhaka University Vice-Chancellor and chairman of the Board of Directors of national news agency Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS) spoke as the key speaker. Information Commissioner Suraya Begum presented the keynote paper.
Speaking on the occasion, State Minister for Information Murad Hasan called upon all to make the day a success with a pledge to increase mass awareness campaign about the RTI Act.
The information secretary said the RTI Act, enacted to protect the rights of the people, has already proved to be a unique milestone for country’s development.
The chief information commissioner said the access to accurate and timely information is a great tool to overcome any crisis.
It helps to create more public awareness and ensure transparency, accountability and responsibility of the authorities concerned, he added.
Information Commissioner Abdul Malek, Secretary of the Disaster Management and Relief Affairs Md Mohsin, Chief Information Officer (PIO) Surath Kumar Sarkar, Sumna Sultana Mahmud of Bangladesh chapter of The Carter Center, Information Commission Secretary Sudatta Chakma and MRDI Executive Director Hasibur Rahman Mukur, among others, were also present.
Later, the Information Minister handed over 13 awards in six categories to various ministries for their outstanding contribution to the practice of Right to Information Act this year.