Rohingya children living in refugee camps will be allowed to receive a formal education after a change of heart by government in a move welcomed by rights activists and UN. Nearly one million Rohingya, including more than half a million children, live in the squalid and crowded camps near the southeastern border with Myanmar, where many had fled from in 2017 after a brutal military crackdown.
The children were previously barred from studying the curriculums used in Bangladesh and Myanmar, and instead received primary education in temporary learning centres set up by UNICEF. “We don’t want a lost generation of Rohingya. We want them to have education. They will follow Myanmar curricula,” Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen said, after greeting guests. The decision came after a meeting of a national taskforce set up by the government. A pilot programme involving more than 10,000 students would be launched soon, with UNICEF and Dhaka jointly designing the curriculum. The refugee children will be schooled in Myanmar history and culture up to age 14, and will also receive skills training so they can take up jobs back in Myanmar.
About 23 percent women garment workers experience sexual harassment at workp, according to a study by Manusher Jonno Foundation. Among the workers interviewed, 79.90 percent women and 79 percent men have not heard about the High Court directives regarding the prevention of sexual harassment at work. Titled “Sexual Harassment Against Female Workers at Workplace: Strategy to Combat and Way Forward”, the study was presented at a roundtable at Prothom Alo office in the capital.
The Bangla daily organised the discussion in association with the MJF and Sweden Sverige. The MJF interviewed 425 workers from 12 factories in Dhaka 10 factories in Chattogram last year. The anti-harassment committee, prescribed by the HC, had been formed in only six of the factories. About 24.5 percent of the women said their work environment was unsafe as they could not express their opinion because of abusive managers, constant fear of losing the job, heavy workload, poor payment, long working hours, and a sense of insecurity.
The government declared Cox’s Bazar an expensive town considering the prices of essentials and cost of transportation in the country’s main resort town. The cabinet division in a statutory regulatory order issued on January 27 made the declaration. It is reported that demand for essentials and other items had gone up with the influx of 750,000 Myanmar nationals of the Rohingya ethnic group in the space of a few months starting from August 25, 2017.
Once the government includes a city corporation or a municipality area on its list of expensive cities or towns, the public officers and employees working there receive some allowances at a higher rate. Cox’s Bazar becomes the 12th city designated as such. In July 2019, Mymensingh was declared an expensive city, following Narayanganj, Gazipur and Savar in 2013. Dhaka, Chattogram, Rajshahi, Khulna, Barishal, Sylhet, Rangpur are the other expensive cities.
The Election Commission has decided to use closed-circuit television cameras of educational institutions in the forthcoming elections to the Dhaka north and south cities slated for February 1. The commission has asked the returning officers for the polls to collect detailed information of the CCTV cameras of the educational institutions that will be used as polling centres, EC secretary M Alamgir said.
The educational institutions have been requested to hand over the control of the cameras to EC officials for the voting day and days before and after the voting day for security reasons, Alamgir added. He also said that there was no scope for vote rigging with the electronic voting machines as all concerned expressed satisfaction with the EVM system. Responding to a question about the Bangladesh Nationalist Party’s reservation over the use of EVMs, he said that the Election Commission had nothing to do if any party did not come to see the machine.