Narayon Chandra Chanda, AKM Shahjahan Kamal and Mustafa Jabbar have been sworn in as ministers and Kazi Keramat Ali as a state minister in the current Cabinet.
President Md Abdul Hamid administered the oath at Bangabhaban at 6:30pm on Tuesday.
Narayon has been serving as the state minister for the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock, Shahjahan is an elected member of parliament for Lakhsmipur 3 constituency, Keramat is an elected lawmaker for Rajbari 1, and technocrat Mustafa Jabbar is the president of Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS), reported UNB.
Earlier in the evening, Shahjahan, Keramat and Mustafa were seen entering Bangabhaban with their family members, while Narayon went alone, reports Bangla Tribune.
On Monday, the government announced that it would be bringing some changes to the Cabinet in an effort to speed up administrative activities.
Narayon Chandra was made full minister from state minister for fisheries and livestock.
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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu, Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed and Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury were present at the swearing-in ceremony conducted by Cabinet Secretary M Shafiul Alam.
The new ministers and the state minister have yet to be given portfolios. The cabinet secretary told reporters that a notification on the distribution of portfolios would be issued today.
However, Keramat told reporters that he would be made the state minister for education.
With this change, the Cabinet now has 53 members, with 34 ministers, 17 state ministers and two deputy ministers.
The Cabinet was last expanded on July 12, 2015 when three ministers – Nurul Islam BSc, Asaduzzaman Khan and Yeafesh Osman – and two state ministers – Nuruzzaman Ahmed, lawmaker from Lalmonirhat 2 constituency, and Tarana Halim, a lawmaker from reserved women seat – were sworn in.
State Minister for Home Affairs Asaduzzaman Khan and State Minister for Science and Technology Yeafesh Osman were elevated to the rank of ministers at the same time.
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Narayon was made the state minister for fisheries and livestock after the Awami League-led 14-party alliance formed the present government through the 10th parliamentary election on January 5, 2014.
Fisheries and Livestock Minister Muhammed Sayedul Hoque passed away on December 16, 2017.
Shahjahan was elected MP twice – first in 1973 and then in 2014 – from Lakshmipur 3 constituency.
BASIS President Mustafa Jabbar is best known for creating software Bijoy, and he published the Bijoyfirst Bangla keyboard in 1988. He is also leading the ICT industry as the president of Bangladesh Computer Samity.
He was sworn in as a technocrat minister as he is not an elected member of parliament.
‘This is my greatest achievement’
Born on March 12, 1945 at Ula village in Dumuria, Khunla, Narayon Chandra Chanda completed his bachelor and master degrees in political science at Rajshahi University in 1966 and 1967, respectively.
Chanda was elected lawmaker from Khulna 5 constituency for the first time in 1995 and then in 2014.
On being the minister for fisheries and livestock, Chandra expressed his gratitude to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and said his top priority would be helping take the government’s development projects forward.
“Being a minister is the greatest achievement in my 50-year political career. I will take steps to increase our fish production capacity. Also, we will start fishing in areas in the Bay of Bengal that we won from Myanmar and India.”
‘A minister’s job is to serve people’
Born on February 10, 1950 at Laharkandi in Lakshmipur, Shahjahan Kamal was the administrator of Lakshmipur District Council and director of Janata Bank Ltd.
The president of Awami League’s Lakshmipur district unit, Shahjahan was elected lawmaker from Lakshmipur 3 constituency in 2014.
Sworn in as minister, Shahjahan too said he would put all his efforts to help the government implement its development projects country forward.
“Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had nominated me as a candidate in the 1973 elections. This time his daughter Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina chose me as a minister. I am a simpleminded human being living in a rural area. For me, being a minister means to serve the people.”
‘Letters in English won’t be allowed in my ministry’
Born on August 12, 1949, Mustafa Jabbar is best known as the creator of Bijoy Bayanno software, the first Bangla keyboard developed in 1988.
A 1971 war veteran, Jabbar completed his bachelor and master degrees in Bangla literature at Dhaka University in 1972 and 1974, respectively.
Jabbar, sworn in as a technocrat minister, said he would work to overhaul the ICT sector in a bid to make it a digital industry. “Our country is already on the track to become Digital Bangladesh. Still, we need to focus on certain issues, and I will take care of them.”
He said: “Letters written only in English will not be allowed in the ministry I will be chosen for. They will have to be written either in Bangla or both in English and Bangla.”
‘I will uncover the barriers to quality education’
Keramat Ali was elected from Rajbari 1 constituency in the 2014 parliamentary elections.
He is the chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and the general secretary of Awami League’s Rajbari unit.
Born on April 22, 1954, Keramat was elected lawmaker four times from the Rajbari 1 constituency.
After taking oath, Keramat told journalists that he would be taking the office of the as state minister for education and his top priority would be ensuring the provision of quality education.
“I will uncover all barriers to ensuring quality education and take measures to address them accordingly,” he said.