In spite of sporadic developments towards Digital Bangladesh, coordination in the process has become the most essential need of the time. If need be, an adviser maybe appointed to look into the matter and the concerned ministries maybe reformed to make the process organised. Speakers from a cross section of stakeholders said these at a roundtable titled ‘One year of Digital Bangladesh’ organised by the Bangladesh ICT Journalist Forum on January 16.
The roundtable was chaired by Hasanul Haq Inu, chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee for Post and Telecommunication Ministry while Dr. Akram Hossain Chowdhury, Member of Parliament and chairman of Centre for E-parliament research was special guest at the event. The roundtable was convened by Mohammad Kawsar Uddin, president, BIJF.
The chief guest at the event said a lot of efforts are already in process towards developing Digital Bangladesh. But due to its sporadic development, people are not able to picture the whole situation. The government should come up with specific plan and a participatory environment and present its activities to the public in a coordinated manner. A coordinator maybe appointed to centrally manage the process. ‘Like the others, I too believe that the Ministry of Science and ICT and the Ministry of Post and Telecommunication should be merged instead of keeping them separate.’ He also emphasized on reforming the Bangladesh Computer Council.
Dr Akram Hossain Chowdhury said, ‘in my constitution those who approach to me on email, I consider their applications with greater priority. In spite of many efforts made in the last one year towards Digital Bangladesh, there has not been a roadmap to implement them. We will try to discuss the matter in parliament.’
The roundtable was attended by Mustafa Jabbar, president, Bangladesh Computer Samity, Habibullah N Karim, president, Bangladesh Association of Software Information and Services, Akhteruzzaman Manju, president, Internet Service Providers Association of Bangladesh, Mojahidul Islam, general secretary of BIJF, AHM Sultanur Reza, deputy general manager of Grameenphone, Moutushi Kabir, communication manager, Nokia Emerging Asia, Mujibur Rahman Shawpan, secretary general of BCS, Fahim Mashroor, chief executive of Bdjobs,
AHM Bazlur Rahman-S21BR, Chief executive Officer of Bangladesh NGOs network for Radio and Communication, Tarek Barkatullah, senior system analyst of Bangladesh Computer Council, Moinul Haq Siddiqui, managing director of Fiber@Home, S M Akash, communication and media manager of Access to Information with the Prime Minister’s Office, Professor Dr. Lutfor Rahman of Computer Science Department of Dhaka University, Dr Aminul Haq of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology and many more. The roundtable was moderated by TIM Nurul Kabir, chairman of Digital Knowledge Foundation.
The discussants at the roundtable pointed out that the government’s budget allocation of Tk 100 crore in the ICT sector last year remains unused till date. There has not been much of success in the last year towards implementing Digital Bangladesh. There has been a lack of responsibility on the part of government towards taking initiatives. The discussion also urged the need for public and private partnership towards faster implementation of the vision 2021. The organisers assured to reach the recommendations to the government at the earliest.