Mentioning that electricity is the most essential element for the country is overall development, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said her government will light up every house by boosting the power generation.
"It’s our goal to light up every house through increased generation of electricity," she said while inaugurating six power plants with the total generation capacity of 1,062 megawatts and nine new grid sub-stations through videoconferencing from her official residence Ganobhaban.
The Prime Minister also opened power supply to Sandwip upazila in Chattogram through submarine cable, and cent percent electrification of 12 upazilas.
Addressing the programme, the Prime Minister said the electricity demand goes up with the improvement of socio-economic status and lifestyle of people.
"So, we’re also increasing the power generation capacity keeping consistency with the growing demand," she added.
Sheikh Hasina said now 93 percent people are enjoying electricity facilities in the country.
She said now people do not need to run to and fro for having power connections as the government is taking electricity to their houses. "Our goal is to light up every corner of the country."
Expressing her gratitude to the people of Bangladesh for electing her government by casting their votes in favour of ’Boat’ in the 2018 general election, she said, "We’ll march forward upholding the confidence and trust the people put on us."
She said Awami League government took the country towards the path of development in the last 10 years from 2008 to 2018 coming to power for two consecutive terms.
"Today, we’ve graduated to a developing country and we’ll keep working to maintain the trend," she added.
Noting that the AL government is taking measures for the overall development of all upazilas, she said, "We’ll be able to build the country as hunger- and poverty-free, developed and prosperous one as dreamt by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman."
Coming to power in 1996, the AL government made Bangladesh a food-sufficient country, boosted power generation and increased the literacy rate, and developed infrastructures, including schools and bridges which created the ray of hope among people, Hasina said, adding, "But the ray of hope had gone out after BNP-Jamaat came to power in 2001."
Talking about the power supply to Sandwip from the national grid, the Prime Minister said it will attract investment, accelerate industrialisation, help increase crop productions, help set up agro-processing industries and unlock the potentials of blue economy.
Mentioning that Sandwip is a very beautiful island, she said tourism can be flourished there.
The six power plantsinaugurated at the functionare Sirajganj 282 MW Simple Cycle Power Plant, Bhola 225 MW Combined Cycle Power Plant, Chandpur 200 MW Power Plant, Ashuganj 150 MW Power Plant, Rupsha 105 MW Power Plant in Khulna, Julda 100 MW Power Plant (3rd unit) in Chattogram.
The nine grid sub-stations are Ramganj, Barishal (North), Baraiyarhat, Shikalbaha, Jaldhaka, Sunamganj, Bianibazar, Rangamati and Matarbari.
The 12 upazilas which came under cent percent electricity coverage are Harinakundu, Thakurgaon Sadar, Baliadangi, Goalanda, Kalukhali, Bamna, Lakhai,
Shaistaganj, Ajmiriganj, Bahubal, Melandah and Islampur.
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid and PM’s Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Adviser Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury spoke on the occasion.
Nasrul Hamid said 186 upazilas have come under cent percent electricity coverage. There is also 80pc-90pc electricity coverage in the rest upazilas of the country.
"We hope we’ll be able to bring 100 percent of all the upazilas under electricity network at the end of this year," he said.
PM’s Principal Secretary Md Nojibur Rahman moderated the function, while Power Division Secretary Dr Ahmad Kaikaus made a presentation on the development of the power sector in the last 10 years.
In his presentation, Dr Kaikaus said the country’s daily power generation capacity is now 20,854 megawatts.
The Secretary said Bangladesh has now been turned into a power-surplus country from a deficit one thanks to the inauguration of 100 new power plants in the country over the last 10 years.
Awami League senior leaders Tofail Ahmed and Engineer Mosharraf Hossain were present.