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Dhaka     Wednesday   22 September 2021

Happy birthday, Architect of Digital Bangladesh

Professor Dr. Md. Sazzad Hossain || risingbd.com

Published: 13:27, 27 July 2021   Update: 14:21, 27 July 2021
Happy birthday, Architect of Digital Bangladesh

Professor Dr. Sazzad Hossain

Joy!  It would not be wrong to say that this word is not just a word for the Bengali nation but a part of the existence of this nation. The answer to why the word Joy is so special to the Bengali nation is as follows the history of the origin of Bangladesh. ‘Joy Bangla’, which translates as ‘victory to Bengal’ or ‘hail Bengal’. In 1971, the entire Bengali liberation was awakened by this slogan. Our victory comes after the exchange of blood of three million martyrs and the sacrifices of countless victims of the freedom struggle. Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the father of our nation, led this struggle. It was under his leadership that the indomitable Bengali snatched victory and freedom. Bengali wins, humanity wins.

On March 26, 1971, he declared Bangladesh an independent state free from Pakistani invaders. Before his arrest, Bangabandhu told his daughter that if she gave birth to a son, his name should be Joy. Joy was born a few months before Bangladesh became independent. His birth seemed to be an incoming message of freedom for the Bengali nation. Joy's birth was a symbol of the beginning of a new era in Bangladesh.  Joy was raised in this country since his birth. Today he is an educated, intelligent and a man of great honor.

Similarly, Bangladesh is slowly moving on the path of progress and that is why Bangladesh's relationship with Joy is inseparable. Since the independence of the country, Bangabandhu has worked for the welfare of this state till his death. He had many dreams surrounding this country which he could not fulfill in his lifetime and therefore his daughter Sheikh Hasina, the current Prime Minister of Bangladesh, took the responsibility of implementing that dream. Slowly, Bangabandhu's daughter is going to fulfill all her dreams and Bangabandhu's grandson Sajeev Wazed Joy is making a very important contribution to it. Joy is proving his worth in many ways. He has been working as an advisor to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on ICT for free. Sajeeb Wazed Joy is the architect of converting Bangladesh into digital Bangladesh.

Joy was born on July 27, 1971. At that time the whole country was fighting for liberation with the invading forces. Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was still in jail. After nine long months of war, Bangladesh won on December 16, 1971. Bangabandhu returned free from jail and found that his wish had been fulfilled. His grandson has been named Jay. The greatness of the name Joy is understood only when the eternal slogan Joy Bengali was enchanted.   A new generation begins with the birth of Joy, a generation that can only move forward successfully, the proof of which we get when we see Sajeeb Wazed Joy. Joy is the son of two outstanding personalities. His father, M. A. Wazed Mia was a prominent nuclear scientist. His beloved mother The Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina is a unique statesman with a worldwide reputation. Needless to say, the son of such two outstanding parents will be special. The post-war days of Bangabandhu were very happy with the birth of the country and the joy of independence. But soon everything was turned upside down in a storm. On 15 August 1975, Bangabandhu and his family were brutally killed. Joy, his mother, father and aunt Sheikh Rehana survived by the grace of the most merciful God because they were living in Germany at the time. Despite such tragic events, Joy along with his aunt and parents was not allowed to return to the country until 1981. On her return to the country, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina took over the presidency of the Awami League and started the movement for the establishment of democracy. Joy's study continued through such a volatile situation. He attended St. Joseph's College in India and Kodaikanal International School in Tamil Nadu. He then obtained a bachelor's degree in science from the University of Bangalore. His subjects were computer science, physics and mathematics. He also holds a bachelor's degree in computer engineering from the University of Texas in the United States. He eventually earned a master's degree in public administration from the world-renowned Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Joy's own learnings, the education he received from his parents and the inherited spirit of Bangabandhu all have helped to create today's Joy. He landed the leadership role when the country was in a state of instability. Despite being the Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina was under constant threat. When she was the leader of the opposition party, she was brutally attacked with grenades on August 21, 2004. Although she survived, many leaders and activists of Bangladesh Awami League were killed and injured by that incident. Another black chapter began in 2006 and 2007 when the country fell under an unelected caretaker government with the tacit support of the military. At that time, a conspiracy was hatched to deprive the current Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina of the opportunity to take power. She was falsely accused and sent to prison. It was at this time when her son Sajeeb Wazed Joy played an important role in the movement. He promoted the movement in Europe and America. His movement was not only for the liberation of his mother but also for the establishment of democracy in the country. His movement was fruitful and with the release of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the caretaker government formed with the support of the military fell. Joy officially joined the Rangpur Divisional Awami League on 25 February 2010 as a general member. He could have held a higher position if he wished, but he did not take it. Sajeeb Wazed Joy has been working tirelessly for the development of the country as an ICT adviser to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

Joy is now leading the new generation in Bangladesh to transform Bangladesh into a digital Bangladesh. The concept of Digital Bangladesh is based on four main themes. These are the use of information technology in business, increasing communication among people, human resource development and civic services. Bangladesh is slowly improving in all areas. He has also given direction to the young generation of the country in different ways. He explained to the youth that the need for politics is essential for the overall welfare of the country. However, it is inappropriate to use politics for personal gain. Joy always inspires the young generation to play an important role in the development of the country. He is a man who, despite being the son of the Prime Minister, has made arrangements to speak directly to the younger generation of the country. He has given the opportunity to give opinion on important decisions of the country. To this end, Joy set up a social organization called 'Let’s Talk' so that the young generation of this country would have the opportunity to get involved in various activities for the development of the country. He created the Center for Research and Information (CRI) and the country's largest youth platform called 'Young Bangla' and ‘Let’s Talk’ through which the youth can be involved in various policy-making activities of the country and also the field of development according to their talents. This son of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has also published her thoughts in written form in various internationally renowned journals. He has also published various articles on various famous blogs. Most of the international publishing houses, including Diplomatic Courier, The Diplomat, The Washington Times, have published articles focusing on the political and progressive issues of the victory. He also expresses his attitude on social media Facebook and Twitter. Sajeeb Wazed Joy has been awarded the ICT for Development Award in 2016 for his outstanding role in information technology. He was also elected Young Global Leader in 2008 by the World Economic Forum.

During this time of pandemic, countries that are at the forefront of information and communication technology (ICT) are reaping additional benefits. He said that the information technology infrastructure developed in the last 11 years under the government's Digital Bangladesh program is working to handle this difficult situation. It is possible to continue economic activities including emergency services for the benefit of digital technology. He is leading the way in expanding digital infrastructure, including the launch of 5-G, to take Bangladesh to the developed world in technology. Like Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Joy is not only a dreamer, he also knows how to make dreams come true. He came to the political arena as a member of the party because he wanted to learn from the beginning. He has innovative and creative ideas that can be found among successful entrepreneurs.

He has always encouraged the young generation of the country to use their talents to do something creative without choosing a conventional career. He said that the youth of the country should not imitate to face various challenges in the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, but to acquire innovative skills. We believe that under his leadership future generations will be able to build a developed, leading in technology and modern Bangladesh as dreamed by the father of the nation.

Professor Dr Md Sazzad Hossain, ICT expert, is a member of University Grants Commission (UGC) and director of Bangladesh Satellite Company Limited (BSCL).