Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has called on newly commissioned members of the Bangladesh Navy to be inspired by the ideals of the Liberation War and dedicate themselves to preserving the independence and sovereignty of Bangladesh.
“Remember the spirit of the Liberation War and dedicate yourselves to the grave duty of protecting our country’s independence and sovereignty,” she said while addressing a passing out parade at the Bangladesh Naval Academy in Chittagong on Sunday.
“As a member of our orderly armed forces you must show loyalty to your superiors and your sympathy to subordinates.”
The prime minister reminded the gathered troops of the navy’s duty to protect the resources in the 118,813 sq km territorial seas, 200 nautical miles of economic zone and 364 nautical miles of resources below the continental shelf that has become Bangladeshi territory since the signing of maritime border agreements with India and Myanmar.
“Our expansive marine border contains fish, oil and other valuable and important minerals. The importance of these resources to our economy is unparalleled. The work of the navy has expanded significantly to protect these resources,” she told the group of graduating officers.
The government is taking the necessary steps to ensure that these resources are being used properly. The Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Maritime University, run by the navy, is training and developing the skills of the population to grow the sea economy, she said.
Hasina reviewed the graduation parade put on by the Midshipman 2015 and the Direct Entry Officers (DEO) 2017/B batches from the Naval Academy.
A total of 104 navy officers, including 21 women, were commissioned on Sunday.
“This year 21 women officers have received commissions, which is proof of women’s development and ability,” Hasina said.
The prime minister also presented awards for outstanding performance in the academy among the midshipmen.
Sohanur Rahman received the Sword of Honour for becoming the best midshipman.
Direct Entry Officer Acting Sub-Lieutenant AZM Nasimul Islam received the Bir Shrestha Shaheed Ruhul Amin Gold Medal, while Midshipman Simanta Nandi Akash received the Naval Chief Gold Medal for acquiring highest standard in the professional and educational subjects.
The prime minister also highlighted the various efforts made by her administration to grow and develop Bangladesh’s navy ‘in line with the instructions of Bangbandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’, including the addition of submarines, new warships, helicopters and patrol planes.
Ministers, advisors to the prime minister, members of parliament, chiefs of the Bangladesh Army and the Bangladesh Air Force, senior military and civil officials, diplomats, local political leaders and guardians of the newly commissioned midshipmen were present.
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