News and Events

CRI Participation at the 136th Inter-Parliamentary Union

The 136th Assembly of the Inter- Parliamentary Union (IPU), a mega conference of world parliamentarians, was held from 1st-5th April in Dhaka. The IPU, established in 1889 with its headquarters in Switzerland, is the focal point for global parliamentary dialogues for peace, development, more

E-Village: Digitally empowering villages

Pajuliya village in Gazipur near Dhaka has a typical Bangladeshi agro-based economy. Nearly 90 percent of the villagers make a living out of agricultural activities of some sort – cultivating paddy, growing vegetables, rearing cattle, and so on.  more

Let’s Talk on Reducing Inequalities

On 23rd March, 2017, Centre for Research and Information (CRI) organized a Let’s Ta!k with In the run up to the upcoming 136th Assembly of Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU) scheduled to take place in Dhaka. Mr Saber Hossain Chowdhury MP (President, Inter-Parliamentary Union), Ms. Waseqa Ayesha Khan MP, Mr Kazi Nabil Ahmed MP, Mr. Farhad Hossain Mp, Mr. Shah Ali Farhad and Ms. Shahreen Srabon Tilottoma were among the panelists present. The topic of this session of Let’s Ta!k was “Reducing Inequalities” with around 200 participants took part in this interactive discussion at Krishibid Institution, Dhaka. The participants consisted of youths from a cross section of society, including among others, students of public and private universities, young professionals, entrepreneurs, development workers as well as Joy Bangla Youth Awardees.

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For the ease of discussion, the event was divided into five segments: economic inequality, social & political inequality, governance and access to services, equality in law and policies and a rapid fire round.

Cashing on the opportunity to ask questions to the IPU President, Saber Hossain Chowdhury, the participants raised issues like urban poverty, wealth disparity, gender, community volunteerism, skilled labour force, internship opportunities in government bodies, incubation for start-up and education for physically challenged, national youth parliament, infrastructural development, disaster preparedness and many more. The panellists acknowledged the challenge in gathering the youth for discussion on national issues and were delighted with the questions they received from the enthusiast and knowledgeable young crowd. It became apparent from the discussions based on their queries and concerns how the young generation faced inequality in everyday lives whether it was financial, political and state policy or public service related. Mr Chowdhury, also a lawmaker, said while there are more young people in the world than ever before, creating unprecedented potential for economic and social progress, this demography constitutes only a handful of 2% lawmakers across the globe. He also stated that he the youth generating is grossly underrepresented in national politics and policy making, which is tragic considering what a large percentage of the population they make up. He recognised the need for participation of youths in politics and stated that unless we have more youths in policy making level, chances are very slim that the thoughts of youths get reflected in national policies and become youth centric. He believes that the youth acting as an agent of change in our society and would like to see them more active in political roles in the future. The suggestions regarding equality from this event will be presented at the IPU Assembly, he added.

The youth group raises concern over an array of topic ranging from the welfare of our blue collar workers, the disabled, the third gender to discrimination faced due to individual or community backgrounds. Some of the participants suggested that some of these inequalities may have resulted due to the lack of decentralised industries and services across the country. They expect to see vast developments nationwide, along with a stronger regulatory policy in the near future. They also raised concerns regarding Bangladesh’s vulnerability due to climate change and the absence of public polls or referendums before major changes in national policies. There were also common opinions among the crowd regarding a general dissatisfaction regarding the inconsistency in the quality of health and education sectors.

In reference to the queries raised the panellists explained that many of the issues raised could not be solved in the short term and many of them were already in the list of the government’s national agenda. The panel pointed out the progress made in terms of support provided to the agricultural sector, people’s welfare and steps taken for social inclusion. Barrister Shah Ali Farhad also said in reference to Britain’s equality act 2010 that focus should be laid out to enact such a law in our country to endow our citizens with legal right to lodge complaints after being faced with any form of discrimination– either from government or non-government institutions— in everyday life.

Joy Bangla Concert 2017: A Thread, Binding Music and History

Music can work as a joining thread between youth and patriotism. From the reflection that, music can be the bridge between youth and the true history of the country, Young Bangla has been organizing the Joy Bangla Concert every year since 2015 on the anniversary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s historic 7th March speech. The concert is not just a musical extravaganza; rather it’s a firm call upon every young mind who truly believes in the spirit of freedom with which the Liberation War was fought in 1971 and which drove an entire generation of young souls to sacrifice their lives for independence.

After organizing two successful grand rock concerts in 2015 and 2016 this is the third grand rock event of the town. Warfaze, Artcell, Arnab and Friends, Shironamhin, Nemesis, Shunno and Arbovirus rocked the event of 2015 and the Joy Bangla Concert 2016, roared with the voice of Warfaze, Cryptic Fate, Shironamhin, Nemesis, Lalon, Arbovirus and Shunno.

Young Bangla’s secretariat, the Centre for Research and Information (CRI), is facilitating this bridge between youth and nationalism. A line up of leading and popular bands will enthrall the crowds with their own songs and also by rendering patriotic and motivational songs of “Swadhin Bangla Betar Kendra”which inspired our war heroes during the liberation war.

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This year the performers are Warfaze, Cryptic Fate, Arbovirus, Nemesis, Shironamhin, Shunno, Lalon and Chirkut.

Apart from the musical performances, there will also be some presentations on the historic 7th March to bring the history into a deliverable tune to the youth. Above all the arrangement, colored presentation of the historic 7th March speech is of great attraction.

There will be different stalls of Young Bangla and CRI to showcase and merchandize the CRI and Young Bangla publications and other materials. Food stalls from different tastes and vendors will also be available for the food crawlers. There will be free WIFI available in the venue.

Joy Bangla Concert is a comprehensive initiative pulled up with the brace of multiple sponsors, they are: Beximco Group, Hamid Group, Gemcon Group, Confidence Group, Summit Group, East Coast Group, Bangla CAT, Orion Group and Aamra Group. Media partners are, Dhaka Tribune, Bangla Tribune, Ittefaq and Samakal. TV partners are Ekattor, Channel 9, Boishakhi TV, Maasranga TV and Gaan Bangla. Radio Partner is Radio Dhol 94.0 FM, WiFi Partner is Aamra Companies and overall Technical Partner is Microsoft Bangladesh.

This year the concert venue remained same as the last two years, which is the Army Stadium. The timing is from 4:30to 11:30. Ticket gateway is open for online registration from the Young Bangla website Tickets are free for all who register.

ICT Training for SRDL Representatives will Start from 9th February

Works are well underway to start the implementation of the much awaited ICT training course for around 2,10,000 school and college students in different digital labs set up in schools across the country.

The government set up 2001 such labs under the Sheikh Russel Computer and Language Lab (SRDL) initiative. This is part of the government’s ‘Digital Bangladesh’ initiative which is also a focus area of works of the CRI.

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To this goal, a discussion meeting has been held with State Minister for ICT Zunaid Ahmed, Maliha Nargis, Additional Director General (Joint Secretary) and Rezaul Maksud Jahedi, Director (Admin & Finance) in attendance. Moreover, Sabbir Bin Shams, Executive Director, CRI and Tonmoy Ahmed, Assistant Coordinator, CRI and some of the trainers were also present.

Held on January 26 in the capital, the event has seen discussions took place to start the first edition of the offering of training among the volunteers at the Dhaka DC office on February 9.

According to Tonmoy Ahmed, for every labs around Dhaka, a concerned teacher, a student and a volunteer will be equipped with proper training to run the activities in their labs. Relevant training assistance will be provided by a number of trainers registered by Young Bangla.

Starting from this, throughout next couple of months till June, such training sessions will held at district and city corporation levels so that people, from respective institutions, responsible for ensuring overall supervision of labs, can get introduced to proper training course required to make the labs operational, added Tonmoy.

As per agreement signed between Centre for Research and Information (CRI) and ICT Division, the Young Bangla, a youth platform of the CRI, will oversee ICT training and supervise, monitor and maintain the overall activities till 2018.

Under the agreement, signed on October 2, for each lab, two coordinators and 10 volunteers will be responsible for the overall arrangement and offering of training among the students.