Dhaka, Aug 1 (UNB) - The Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) has celebrated the 62nd Anniversary of the ascension of Aga Khan to the Ismaili Imamat.
The occasion also marked the fifth anniversary of the establishment of AKDN’s Diplomatic Representation Office in Bangladesh.
Senior government officials, members of the diplomatic corps, representatives of civil society and business, and members of the Ismaili community attended the celebration on Wednesday evening.
Acting Foreign Secretary Kamrul Ahsan addressed the function as the chief guest.
AKDN’s Resident Diplomatic Representative to Bangladesh Munir M Merali thanked the government for the support accorded to the Network through the realisation of the Protocol Agreement signed in 2013.
AKDN has been operating for over six decades in Bangladesh across a broad spectrum of activities and programmes, said a media release on Thursday.
Building upon various bilateral agreements, the AKDN in Bangladesh is actively engaged with the government and a variety of development partners to help bring social and economic progress, it said.
Merali highlighted a number of key global initiatives for this year.
First, the inaugural Aga Khan Music Awards - which concluded at the end of March 2019 in Lisbon, Portugal, and a final concert that brought together ten laureates from different countries in a showcase for diversity and pluralism through music.
The Awards were presented by the Aga Khan, President of the Portuguese Republic Professor Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, and Prince Amyn Aga Khan.
Second, in June 2019, the Global Centre for Pluralism – founded by His Highness the Aga Khan in partnership with the Government of Canada – announced 10 finalists for the 2019 Global Pluralism Awards including, Rupantar – a social organisation based in Khulna, Bangladesh.
Thirdly, Representative Merali also informed that in April 2019, the Aga Khan Awards for Architecture announced the 20 projects shortlisted for the 14th Award cycle. Marina Tabassum – winner of the Award in 2016 and member of the Award’s Steering Committee – presented the projects that included two from Bangladesh: The Arcadia Education Project in South Kanarchor and the Amber Denim Loom shed in Gazipur.
The selection of this Cycle’s eventual laureates will be honoured at a ceremony in September 2019, in Kazan, The Russian Republic.
Representative Merali updated on the ongoing construction of the Aga Khan Academy in Dhaka with the first phase of buildings expected to be completed by June 2020.
The award-winning Academy represents a significant investment in education by AKDN for the benefit of all the people of Bangladesh.
Today, AKDN agencies are present in over 30 countries across South Asia, Central Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Europe and North America.
Their combined mandate is to create enabling environments that allow individuals and societies to achieve a standard of self-reliance while bettering the overall quality of life.