PM Sheikh Hasina names 29 member polls Cabinet


Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina formed a 29 member government yesterday which has been described a ‘Polls time administration’. Following the appointment of a number of new ministers on 18th November this new administration is supposed to take the country into national elections before 24th January 2014.

The only problem with this is that the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) has said that it will not participate in an election led by the Prime Minister. Instead it insists that a non-party administration headed by a ‘respected’ citizen chosen by all parties should take the country into an election. The BNP has shown that it has the power and support to disrupt the country after a series of strikes which have crippled daily life across the country.

The international community has also raised concerns with a US Congressional hearing yesterday calling on both parties to work together and the European Parliament calling for calm and a dialogue to achieve a peaceful election.

There were some signs that the Prime Minister might be moving towards some sort of consensus when she initiated a dialogue with a senior BNP figure at a public event. But the two sides seem to be miles apart and whichever side gives in will be severely weakened.

The formal notice of the formation of the new government as it appeared on the Press Information Department website is as follows:

“Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina Yesterday Formed A 29-member Polls Time Cabinet. The Cabinet Division Published A Gazette Notification On The Cabinet With 21 Ministers And Seven State Ministers. The Pm Will Oversee The Cabinet Division, Public Administration Ministry, Defence Ministry And The Armed Forces Division. She Will Also Be In Charge Of The Home And Law Ministries Till Further Notice”.

The ministers and their portfolios as gazetted are as follows:

Amir Hossain Amu Land and Disaster Management
Tofail Ahmed Industries and Public Works
Rashed Khan Menon Telecommunications
Rowshan Ershad Health
Ruhul Amin Hawlader Civil Aviation
Anisul Islam Mahmud Water Resources
Abul Maal Abdul Muhith Finance
Matia Chowdhury Agriculture and Fisheries
Abdul Latif Siddique Science and Jute
AK Khandker Planning
Syed Ashraful Islam LGRD and Cooperatives
Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain Expatriates’ Welfare and Labour
Obaidul Quader Communications
Ramesh Chandra Sen Food
GM Quader Commerce
Hasanul Haq Inu Information and Cultural Affairs
Nurul Islam Nahid Education and Primary Education
Shahjahan Khan Shipping and Liberation War Affairs
Hasan Mahmud Environment ministry
Abul Hasan Mahmood Ali Foreign Affairs
Mujibul Haque Railway and Religious Affairs
State ministers
Mujibul Haque Youth and Sports
Salma Islam Women and Children Affairs
Dipankar Talukdar Chittagong Hill Tracts affairs
Qamrul Islam Law
Monnujan Sufian Labour
Promode Mankin Social Welfare
Shamsul Haque Tuku Home Affairs

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