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Messages - Md. Fouad Hossain Sarker

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Like other 3rd world countries Bangladesh is a developing country. Her economic development depends firstly on agriculture and secondly on industry. Although Bangladesh is not developed in industry, it has been enriched in Garment industries in the recent past years. In the field of Industrialization garment industry is a promising step. It has given the opportunity of employment to millions of unemployed, especially innumerable uneducated women of the country. It is making significant contribution in the field of our export income.

Historical background of the Garment Industry: 

Once the cloth of Bangladesh achieved worldwide fame specially muslim and jamdani cloth or our country was used as the luxurious garments of the royal figures in Europe and other countries. The British rulers in India didn’t develop our cloth industries at all. Rather they destroyed them and imported cloths from England. Garment Industry Large-scale production of readymade garments (RMG) in organized factories is a relatively new phenomenon in Bangladesh. Until early sixties, individual tailors made garments as per specifications provided by individual customers who supplied the fabrics. The domestic market for readymade garment, excepting children wears and men's knit underwear (genji) was virtually non-existent in Bangladesh until the sixties.

Since the late 1970s, the RMG industry started developing in Bangladesh primarily as an export-oriented industry although; the domestic market for RMG has been increasing fast due to increase in personal disposable income and change in life style. The sector rapidly attained high importance in terms of employment, foreign exchange earnings and its contribution to GDP.

Most importantly, the growth of RMG sector produced a group of entrepreneurs who have created a strong private sector. Of these entrepreneurs, a sizeable number is female. A woman entrepreneur established one of the oldest export-oriented garment factories, the Baishakhi Garment in 1977. Many women hold top executive positions in RMG industry.The hundred percent export-oriented RMG industry experienced phenomenal growth during the last 15 or so years. In 1978, there were only 9 export-oriented garment manufacturing units, which generated export earnings of hardly one million dollar. Some of these units were very small and produced garments for both domestic and export markets. Four such small and old units were Reaz Garments, Paris Garments, Jewel Garments and Baishakhi Garments.

Reaz Garments, the pioneer, was established in 1960 as a small tailoring outfit, named Reaz Store in DHAKA. It served only domestic markets for about 15 years. In 1973 it changed its name to M/s Reaz Garments Ltd. and expanded its operations into export market by selling 10,000 pieces of men's shirts worth French Franc 13 million to a Paris-based firm in 1978. It was the first direct exporter of garments from Bangladesh. Desh Garments Ltd, the first non-equity joint-venture in the garment industry was established in 1979. Desh had technical and marketing collaboration with Daewoo Corporation of South Korea. It was also the first hundred percent export-oriented company. It had about 120 operators including 3 women trained in South Korea, and with these trained workers it started its production in early 1980. Another South Korean Firm, Youngones Corporation formed the first equity joint-venture garment factory with a Bangladeshi firm, Trexim Ltd. in 1980. Bangladeshi partners contributed 51% of the equity of the new firm, named Youngones Bangladesh. It exported its first consignment of padded and non-padded jackets to Sweden in December 1980.

Till the end of 1982, there were only 47 garment manufacturing units. The breakthrough occurred in 1984-85, when the number of garment factories increased to 587. The number of RMG factories shot up to around 2,900 in 1999. Bangladesh is now one of the 12 largest apparel exporters of the world, the sixth largest supplier in the US market and the fifth largest supplier of T-shirts in the EU market. The industry has grown during the 1990s roughly at the rate of 22%.
The growth of the industry in terms of number of units and employment generation is shown in table - 1 below:

Table 1: Growth of the industry and Employment:

Year    Number of Garment Industries   Employment in Million Workers
1983-84                134                                                   0.040
1988-89                759                                                   0.317
1993-94               1839                                                   0.827
1998-99               2963                                                   1.500
2003-04               3957                                                   2.000
2008-09               4825                                                   3.100
[Source: BGMEA]

At present there are about 5000 garment industries in the country and 75 percent of them are in Dhaka. The rest are in Chittagong and Khulna. These Industries have employed fifty lacks of people and 85 percent of them are illiterate rural women. About 76 percent of our export earning comes from this sector.
The country's RMG sector, to a creditable level has relieved Bangladesh from over populous unemployment burden through providing the largest employment next to agriculture, transport, and trade and industry sector. This sector has uplifted the neglected section of the population, thus radically transforming the socio-economic condition of the country. Such empowerment and employment raised awareness regarding children education, health safety, population control disaster management only so for. It is an epoch making event in the history of Bangladesh.

Pharmacy / History of Pharmacy Education in Bangladesh
« on: September 27, 2011, 08:33:54 PM »
History of Pharmacy Education in Bangladesh:

History is the way to find out the root. In 1964, 1st July PHARMACY Education started its endless journey under the supervision of Professor Emeritus Dr. Abdul Jabbar which roams around him till today.
In 1947, there was no institute for pharmacy education in the newly born Pakistan though there were lots of thoughts to open such an institute. In response to the introduction of Pharmacy profession and its brighter aspects in abroad and development of foreign pharmaceutical companies in Pakistan, Lahore University opened pharmacy department in mid 1948 in West Pakistan (present Pakistan). From the partition of subcontinent the gradual discrimination towards East Pakistan (Bangladesh) also affected the Pharmacy Education, though a good number of students of this part were interested in Pharmacy. But they didn’t get the chance. At that period Prof. Dr. Abdul Jabbar strongly felt the necessity of Pharmacy Education when he was adopting higher degree in abroad and tried to admit some students in Lahore University every year. But only 2 to 4 students got the chance among the 10 to 15’s though they were truly qualified. Those days went on in this way.

During the late 50’s there were few small pharmaceutical companies in East Pakistan (Bangladesh). The demand of medicine market was fulfilled through importing. Moreover, some big companies named Albert David, Glaxo and Baroz Welcome went on production, which needs Pharmacists though there was no scope to fill the demand.

First stride:
Gradually increasing demand of the Pharmacists and the discrimination faced by the students of East Pakistan initiated the thought to start Pharmacy Education in Dhaka University. And Dr. Abdul Jabbar was the First to initiate the process. During that period renowned Educationist Dr. Mahmud Hossain was the Vice Chancellor of Dhaka University. With his help a scheme of establishing Pharmacy department in Dhaka University was sent to Planning Commission several times. But Planning Commission of Government refused to do so, mentioning the lack of teachers. Though in Lahore University Pharmacy education ran under teachers who were not pharmacists, for more than one decade and a new plan was passed to start Pharmacy in Karachi University. Moreover, from 1950’s Biochemistry and Pharmaceutical Chemistry existed as subsidiary subject under Chemistry department in Dhaka University. Thus today its not difficult to understand the decision was just an expression of discrimination.

Meanwhile Dr. A.Jabbar got a fellowship in San-Francisco School of Pharmacy, USA for one year in 1960 and Biochemistry was established as separate department. Dr. Kamaluddin Ahmed was selected as Chairman.Coming back Dr. A. Jabbar with Dr. Kamal started again to set up a platform for pharmacy. Moreover, Dr. Kamal sent three meritorious students named Mr. Abdur Rashid, Mr.shukur Khan and Mr. Shamsul Alam Talukdar for higher studies during 1961-62. Thus the lack of teachers was solved.
Afterwards Dr. A. Jabbar and Dr. Kamal interacted with the University administration to start the Pharmacy education. Prof. Mahmud Hossain as Vice Chancellor passed the proposal and sent to Planning Commission. Today we must reminiscence the name of those great persons to whom we are grateful, the Education Minister of East Pakistan Late.Mafizuddin Ahmed and Economist Late. Dr. M. N. Huda and Dr. K. T. Hossain who shortly joined in planning commission. At last with their reference Planning Commission was bound to approve the proposal in late 1962.

After the approval by Planning Commission raised the questions of syllabus, teachers, associates, chairman, place etc. The syllabus was taken as the syllabus of London School of Pharmacy, which was worldwide, recognized for Pharmacy at that period. It was decided to take class in the classrooms of Biochemistry Department, which is situated in the Carzon Hall. Though Dr. Abdul Jabbar was the only teacher who did fellowship in pharmacy at that period, due to some political movement in 1962, Dr. Kamaluddin Ahmed was selected as chairman of both Biochemistry and Pharmacy. Few days later Dr. Abdul Jabbar was selected as First chairman of Pharmacy Department.

Though Pharmacy department was started as 3 years professional B.Pharm degree in 1964, it was converted into 3 years B.Pharm (Hons) degree in 1965 due to protest from the students. In 1967 the first B.Pharm batch passed out.

Heritage/Culture / History of Muslin Fabrics of Dhaka
« on: September 27, 2011, 08:27:17 PM »
Muslin fabrics of Dhaka:

Muslin was a brand name of pre-colonial Bengal textile, especially of Dhaka origins. Muslin was manufactured in the city of Dhaka and in some surrounding stations, by local skill with locally produced cotton and attained world-wide fame as the Dhaka Muslin.

Origin of the word ‘Muslin’:

The origin of the word Muslin is obscure; some say that the word was derived from Mosul, an old trade centre in Iraq, while others think that Muslin was connected with Musulipattam, sometime headquarters of European trading companies in southern India. Muslin is not a Persian word, nor Sanskrit, nor Bengali, so it is very likely that the name Muslin was given by the Europeans to cotton cloth imported by them from Mosul, and through Mosul from other eastern countries, and when they saw the fine cotton goods of Dhaka, they gave the same name to Dhaka fabrics. That the name Muslin was given by the Europeans admits of little doubt, because not only Dhaka cotton textiles, but cotton goods imported by the Europeans from other parts of India like Gujrat, Golconda, etc were also called Muslin.

Historical Background of Muslin:

The textile industry of Bengal is very old. Bengal cotton fabrics were exported to the Roman and the Chinese empires and they are mentioned in Ptolemy's Geography and the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea, and by the ancient Chinese travellers. But Dhaka Muslin became famous and attracted foreign and transmarine buyers after the establishment of the Mughal capital at Dhaka. The Muslin industry of Dhaka received patronage from the Mughal emperors and the Mughal nobility. A huge quantity of the finest sort of Muslin was procured for the use of the Mughal emperors, provincial governors and high officers and nobles. In the great 1851 Exhibition of London, Dhaka Muslin occupied a prominent place, attracted a large number of visitors and the British Press spoke very highly of the marvelous Muslin fabrics of Dhaka.
Different types of cotton for making Muslin:
The finest sort of Muslin was made of phuti cotton, which was grown in certain localities on the banks of the Brahmaputra and her branches. The other kinds of cotton called bairait and desee were inferior and were produced in different parts of Dhaka and neighbouring areas; they were used for manufacturing slightly inferior and course clothes. The persons connected with the manufacture of cloth, from the cleaner to the maker of thread and the person who did the actual weaving, belonged to a family of weavers, or if the family was small two to three families joined together to manufacture the cloth.

Different types of Muslin:
The productions of Dhaka weavers consisted of fabrics of varying quality, ranging from the finest texture used by the highly aristocratic people, the emperor, viziers, nawabs and so on, down to the coarse thick wrapper used by the poor people. Muslins were designated by names denoting either fineness or transparency of texture, or the place of manufacture or the uses to which they were applied as articles of dress.Names thus derived were - 

1.Malmal :
 The finest sort of Muslin was called Malmal, sometimes mentioned as Malmal Shahi or Malmal Khas by foreign travellers. It was costly, and the weavers spent a long time, sometimes six months, to make a piece of this sort. It was used by emperors, nawabs etc. Muslins procured for emperors were called Malbus Khas and those procured for nawabs were called Sarkar-i-Ala. The Mughal government appointed an officer, Darogah or Darogah-i-Malbus Khas to supervise the manufacture of Muslins meant for the emperor or a nawab. The Malmal was also procured for the diwan and other high officers and for JAGAT SHETH, the great banker. Muslins other than Malmal (or Malbus Khas and Sarkar-i-Ali) were exported by the traders, or some portion was used locally.

2.   Jhuna’ was used by native dancers.
3.   Rang’ was very transparent and net-like texture.
4.   Abirawan’ was fancifully compared with running water.
5.   Khassa’ was special quality, fine or elegant.
6.   Shabnam’ was as morning dew.
7.   Alaballee’ was very fine.
8.   Tanzib’ was as the adorning the body.
9.   Nayansukh’ was as pleasing to the eye.
10.   Buddankhas’ was a special sort of cloth.
11.   Seerbund’ used for turbans.
12.   Kumees’ used for making shirts.
13.   Doorea’ was striped.
14.   Charkona’ was chequered cloth.
15.   Jamdanee’ was figured cloth.

Manufacturing areas of Muslin:

Weaving was prevalent in the Dhaka district in almost every village, but some places became famous for manufacturing superior quality of Muslins. These places were Dhaka, SONARGAON, Dhamrai, Teetbady, Junglebary and Bajitpur. Dhaka does not need introduction, it is the same place where the capital stands now; Sonargaon is now in Narayanganj district, it was once the capital of Sultan FAKHRUDDIN MUBARAK SHAH and his son (1338-1353), and again capital of ISA KHAN in the Mughal period; Dhamrai is still an important place on the Bangshi river, about 20 miles west of Dhaka; Teetbady is a village in the Kapasia thana of Gazipur district; Junglebary is now in the district of Mymensingh on the eastern bank of the river Brahmaputra; Bajitpur, 15/20 miles away from Junglebary is also in Mymensingh district; Junglebary was for long a residence of the family of Isa Khan. These places manufactured fine quality cloth, because they were situated near the places where cotton suitable for manufacturing Muslins was produced. These were also the places where the headquarters of ruling dynasties, Muslim or Hindu, were established. So the weavers of these places got support and encouragement from the aristocratic class.

National and International Markets for Muslin:

Dhaka Muslin was in great demand in the national and international markets. The traders were active at Dhaka. Local businessmen procured the cotton goods from the ADANGs or manufacturing stations and sent them to Dhaka, where foreign buyers were ready with cash in hand. The foreign traders came from far-off countries like Arabia, Iran, Armenia, in the west, and China, Malaya, Java in the east. Some traders were busy in inter-provincial trade, while others sent the Muslin to countries outside India. The government officials procured various types of Muslin, which they sent to Delhi for the use of emperors and ministers. When the capital was transferred to Murshidabad, the Muslins meant for the subahdar, diwan and other aristocratic people (like the banker Jagat Sheth) were sent there. In the 17th century, the European companies came and established their settlements in Bengal.
Their principal settlements were located near HUGHLI, on the bank of the river Bhagirath; the DUTCH settled at Chinsura, the PORTUGUESE at Hughli, the ENGLISH settled first at Hughli but later shifted to Calcutta and the FRENCH settled at Chandernagore. The Ostend Company also came towards the beginning of the 18th century. They procured Dhaka Muslin, through dalals, paikars and also through their own officials. When they found their export of Muslin extremely profitable, they also established settlements at Dhaka. By the beginning of the 17th and certainly by the middle of that century, the Portuguese trade declined. The Dutch set up their factory at Dhaka in 1663, the English in 1669 and the French in 1682.
Formerly Europe used to get the Muslin through Iranian and Armenian merchants, but with the coming of the European companies and the establishment of their settlements in Bengal the export of Dhaka Muslin increased enormously. The volume of the export trade of the European companies increased year to year, so much so that they had to establish settlements and factories at Dhaka proper to feed the increased volume of trade. The imports of European companies had no local markets, so the companies imported hard cash, bullion, to meet the growing demand of Bengal, and particularly of Dhaka. Available estimates show that in 1747 the export of Dhaka cotton goods (chiefly of the fine variety of Muslin), including those procured for the emperor, nawab etc was valued at rupees twenty-eight lakh and a half.

Declined after the Battle of Palashi:

The Muslin industry of Dhaka declined after the BATTLE OF PALASHI, 1757; by the end of the 18th century, the export of Dhaka Muslin came down to almost half of that of 1747, and by the middle of the 19th century was valued at less than ten lakh Rupees. The decline of Dhaka Muslin was due to loss of patronage from the Mughal emperors, nawabs and other high officials. The Mughals not only lost their power and prestige but also their buying and spending capacity. With the establishment of the EAST INDIA COMPANY's monopoly over the trade of Bengal after the battle of Palashi, the trade of other European companies and traders belonging to other nationals practically came to a stop. But the most important cause of decline and the ultimate extinction of the Muslin industry was the industrial revolution in England, which introduced modern inventions in manufacture. The costly Dhaka cotton goods, particularly the Muslin, lost in competition with the cheap industrial products of England.

James Taylor, A Sketch of the Topography and Statistics of Dacca, London 1840; Dhaka Commissioner's letter dated 2 may, 1844, Board's collection no. 100122, India office Records, London; A Descriptive and Historical Account of Cotton Manufacture of Dacca, by former Resident of Dacca, London 1851; JC Sinha, "The Muslin Industry of Dacca" in the Modern Review, April, 1925; A Karim, "An Account of Dacca, dated 1800" in the Journal of the Asiatic Society of Pakistan, Dhaka, vol. VII. No.2, 1962; A Karim, Dhakai Muslin, Bangla Academy, Dhaka, 1965, Reprint, Dhaka, 1990.

Common Forum / Use of ID card
« on: September 27, 2011, 06:04:18 PM »
It is a tremendous opportunity for us that we all faculties of DIU are getting a good atmosphere for building our career especially in teaching profession. But we did not ensure our responsibilities properly.
For example, today I went to conduct my class in due time and observed some of my students entered in my class without ID. I enforced them to bring ID and finally to hang but they raised a question why every teacher of DIU did not ensure that one in their class time. Hope we all ensure it.

Md. Fouad Hossain Sarker

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