Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday, August 17 urged the people to keep their trust and confidence in her government as she wants to make the life of the country’s every citizen meaningful.
While rolling out the much-anticipated Universal Pension Scheme, she said, “I want to make the life of everyone meaningful and thus improve their living standard by completing the unfinished tasks of my father.”
She opened the pension scheme, joining a virtual function from her official residence Ganabhaban. The participants and beneficiaries were connected from three districts -Gopalganj, Bagerhat, Rangpur and the Bangladesh Consulate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
The universal pension scheme was introduced aiming to bring the country’s all citizens aged above 18 under the pension coverage.
Sheikh Hasina said, “Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman made Bangladesh as a least developed country by building a war-ravaged country and now Bangladesh gained the status of a developing country following the footsteps of Bangabandhu. Inshallah, Bangladesh will be transformed from a developing to a developed country. The people’s trust, confidence and affection are the sources of her strength. So, keep this trust and confidence. I want it from you.”
The Prime Minister added Bangladesh had to face many blows, Covid-19 pandemic, the brunt of Ukraine war, economic sanctions, counter-sanctions and worldwide high inflation, and arson violence.
She mentioned since the people are with us, Bangladesh is moving forward facing everything -natural calamities, pandemic and manmade disasters. Sheikh Hasina described the universal pension scheme as an inclusive programme, and said that her government has been able to bring even the grassroots and disadvantaged people under their development plans.
The Premier said the inaugural day of universal day is really a very significant day for Bangladesh. The day will remain written in the golden letters in the history of Bangladesh.”
Under the universal pension scheme, four different packages: Pragati, Surokkha, Samata and Prabashi out of a total of six planned ones were initially introduced under the universal pension scheme to ensure the lifetime pension facility for the participant citizens.
The Pragati package will cover private job holders, while the Surokkha is designed for self-employed persons, the Samata for the low-income people and the Prabashi package for the expatriate Bangladeshis. The two remaining packages will be launched later.
Any citizen aged above 18 can participate in the universal pension scheme to get the pension facility during the retirement life, by paying installments till the person reaches the age of 60. An individual aged even above 50 can join the scheme but the person will need to pay installments for 10 consecutive years.
Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal and Bangladesh Bank Governor Abdur Rouf Talukder also spoke at the event. Senior Secretary of the Finance Division Fatima Yasmin delivered the welcome speech. Prime Minister’s Principal Secretary M Tofazzel Hossain Miah moderated the event. A video documentary on the Universal Pension Scheme was screened.