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Poverty eradication has been one of the topmost priorities of the Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives ministry and thus the ministry has been relentlessly working for rural development following the guidelines of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and 7th five-year plan of the Government of Bangladesh. Now, there is no Monga (Hunger) in the northern Bangladesh. This has been largely possible due to development projects such as Ekti Bari Ekti Khamar, CLP and M4C. Chief Guest Mr. Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain, Minister for Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives mentioned above on Wednesday, 09 May 2018 in a national seminar titled Future Planning of Char Development Research Centre (CDRC) which was organised by Rural Development Academy (RDA) in collaboration with Making Markets Work for Chars (M4C) at CIRDAP, Dhaka. He also added that the Honorable Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina felt that, for eradicating poverty and generating new employment in rural Bangladesh, every rural house should be “Ekti Bari Ekti Khamar” (One House One Farm). The seminar was chaired by Mr. S.M. Ghulam Farooque, Secretary, Rural Development & Cooperatives Division, Ministry of Local Government.

The seminar participants highlighted that inclusion of marginalized people of char areas in the mainstream development growth-trajectory by unleashing their potential is a necessity for Bangladesh to realize its vision of reaching middle-income country status by 2021 and developed country status by 2041. In the past, CLP project implemented by RDA has largely contributed to this vision and currently, M4C project is taking it forward. M4C is a project implemented by Swisscontact in collaboration with RDA and mandated by Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) under the umbrella of the LGRD and Co-operatives ministry. It is high time to promote the agricultural products of the char areas in the national and international markets in order to include the char dwellers in the mainstream development.

H.E. Rene Holenstein, Ambassador of Switzerland to Bangladesh, Mr. Tevita G. Boseiwaqa Taginavulau, Director General, CIRDAP and Mr. Anirban Bhowmik, Country Director, Swisscontact Bangladesh were present as the special guests of the event. Keynote speech was delivered by Engineer M. A. Matin, Director General, RDA and welcome speech was presented by Dr. Md. Abdur Rashid, Director, CDRC.

In this daylong event, participants from public sector organisations, development partners, NGOs and private sector organisations were present and shared their expectations from CDRC in the coming days.