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Letting people thrive

  • Published at 02:42 pm December 12th, 2019
Economy
Photo: BIGSTOCK

We should be climbing further up the HDI in no time

There is so much more to development than just economic growth. Even the field of economics has long realized this, which is why the human development index is considered as such an important indicator the world over.

Bangladesh has made a slight improvement from last year, moving up one notch -- from 135th place to 136th -- in the HDI published in the UNDP’s highly regarded Human Development Report, and while it is good to see us moving in the right direction, there is no doubt that there is still a long way to go.

The HDI looks at three basic facets of development: Life expectancy, education, and per capita income. All three are necessary for a country’s people to thrive and fully realize their potential. Is the Bangladesh government doing all it to help people in that regard?

Education in particular is an area that requires more attention all around. A large part of the problem seems to be that our public education system is mired in politics, and our syllabuses are not updated to deal with the times. Furthermore, young people are rarely encouraged to pursue their passions or play to their strengths, and are instead, all too often, forced into fields they are not suited to.

We must also pay attention to public health. There is no doubt that the extremely high levels of pollution in our environment are hazardous to health, and to that end, it is good to see the government take the right measures. There has been a move to shut down brick kilns which are major polluters, and there is hope that people will soon be able to breathe easy.

There is a lot of work ahead of us, but by keeping people’s well-being in mind, and creating an environment that sets their talents free, we should be climbing further up the HDI in no time.