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Bangladesh Published At: 09 Jul 2024, 15:53 p.m.

Buet students form human chain demanding quota reform

Students of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) form a human chain in front of the Central Shaheed Minar of Buet on Tuesday, July 9, 2024.

Highlighted High Court ruling that declared quota cancellation circular illegal

Students of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) formed a human chain on Tuesday to express solidarity with protesters advocating for the maintenance of the government circular on quota reform and merit-based recruitment.

The human chain was formed in front of the Central Shaheed Minar of Buet at 12:15 PM. The students highlighted the High Court ruling on June 5, which declared the Ministry of Public Administration's 2018 quota cancellation circular illegal, causing uncertainty about future government employment among talented students across the country.

Explaining their stance, Buet students recalled that after the Liberation War, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman established a 30% quota for war-affected families and a 10% quota for women, a decision deemed necessary due to the sacrifices and struggles faced by these groups at that time. However, they argued that the situation has since changed.

The students noted that most freedom fighter families are now prosperous and that their grandchildren do not face the same backwardness. Therefore, they believe it is mandatory to reform the freedom fighter quota system.

They also pointed out the progress made in women's education and self-esteem, with the country's literacy rate at 76.8% and girls' literacy at 73%. Maintaining a 10% female quota is seen as disrespectful to self-respecting women, many of whom do not want this special quota. Hence, the female quota should also be reformed.

Criticizing the district quota as outdated, the students argued that improved communication systems, such as the Padma Bridge and Jamuna Bridge, have connected remote districts to the rest of the country, making the concept of a remote district obsolete. They believe that keeping a 10% district quota is baseless.

The Buet students emphasized that recruitment should be based on merit if there are no suitable or qualified candidates in various quotas. They underscored the country's progress towards building a smart, modern Bangladesh, where talents are proving their abilities on the international stage.

"The talents of the country will be the backbone of the future of Bangladesh. That is why it is desirable to maintain the full scope of merit," they asserted.

The students concluded by stating that the nationwide movement for quota reforms is logical and that Buet students are expressing solidarity with this cause. They urged the court to prioritize the evaluation of merit and deliver a speedy verdict in favor of the students' demands.