Centre for Research and Information (CRI) hosted its most awaited episode of Let’s Talk with Sheikh Hasina on 22 December 2023. The meticulously curated session featured over300 young individuals including achievers, content creators, athletes, social activists and young professionals. Senjuti Saha, a globally recognized young scientist, moderated the session.
The Let’s Talk provided a platform for the youth to discuss the most pressing issues and ideas with the country’s highest policymaker. They raised various topics reflecting diverse areas of concerns and aspirations of Bangladesh’s younger generation. The premier addressed questions on topics ranging from third-gender rights, climate justice, digital future, human rights, misinformation, development planning, foreign policy to personal life and more.
The session started on a jovial note as the prime minister addressed the participants as her grandchildren. Her friendly interaction made the two-hour-long discussion engaging as well as joyful.
At the outset, the prime minister articulated her vision for a “Smart Bangladesh” where innovation of young minds will be pivotal in national development.
She also offered some advice to the youth, suggesting ways to become self-starters. Her key message was that this generation cannot rely on others and have to believe in their work and work for the country.
“I call upon the youth of Bangladesh to be self-starters, so that the country doesn’t have to look at someone else for its progress,” said the prime minister.
“Sports, outdoors & chit-chats with friends energize the youth. There is no time for the youth to be hopeless. Bangladesh is on a forward momentum, and the youth have to take the baton now,” she added.
Transgender rights activist Monisha Meem Nipun questioned the discriminatory attitudes towards her community and sought the prime minister’s initiative to change the traditional mindset.
Tahsin Jahan, a university student and journalist, highlighted the need for safety measures for women at workplaces, suggesting the establishment of daycare centers.
Environmental activist Shamim Mridha criticized developed nations for not fulfilling their commitments to climate change, particularly affecting vulnerable countries like Bangladesh, at COP28.
On a lighter note, content creator Iftekhar Rafsan asked her about the dish she prepares best as a cook.
The prime minister took down notes during the engagement. The deft policymaker also promised that she would address the issues and concerns raised by the participants.
“We were greatly inspired. We listened to songs, talked, and clapped. We had the opportunity to directly ask the prime minister our heartfelt questions. It was a one-of-a-kind experience,” reflected Senjuti Saha, the moderator.
The participants appreciated the prime minister’s relentless effort and unwavering commitment to national development. They were also fascinated to find the prime minister approachable and affectionate like a family member.
The Daily Star: http://Let’s Talk with PM: Interactive dialogue held