Good bye Sri Lanka: Syed Mohd. Saleh Uddin

(The Russian blamed to Irfan that the owner of Breeze Residence Mr. Ram or some one from his staffs has taken away more than 100 US$ from his room. I wondered how is it possible! by a nice behave man like Mr. Ram whose wife is a Bank official and whose father and mother are also nice men and who gave us all the facilities and finally arranged our airport drop. Though for his service Irfan paid him about 82500 Rupee (eqvt.money).

However,I took that to be a guess only of that Rus family but I do not find answer how 5000 Rupee from Irfan’s custody and 5000 Rupee from Fatema’s bag is stolen from the room though no outsiders entered there!

So, on discussing with other people of the area it is known very gentle residence owner too are doing such crime because they know tourists will not go to the police as they have less time and they will not be able to prove it! I hope police will investigate and look into such crime for the honor of Sri-Lanka and to ensure practical sincereity of the residence owner.

I hope tourists will also try to find actual honest residence owners.In my few previous posts I talked high about Breeze Residence and Mr. Ram. If by this some one faced monetary loss, I am sorry. Mr. Ram’s external behaviour inspired me to advertised for him. I hope one day his external and internal will be the same and not a single person will be cheated by him.)

In Sri Lanka we spent more than two weeks. During this long period we have visited many areas of the land including Sri-Pada the landing place of Hazrat Adam (PBUH).

This is the sacred place for the followers of all the major religions of the world. It was believed to be it was the highest mountain peak in the earth. It may be true, in case of the green peak where foods for survival were also available and climate for human survival was present. In the other hand we know now, the Everest in the Himalayan mountain range is the highest peak. There is no doubt in it. But climate there for human survival is hostile and there is no food for human consumption.

However, I like to share with you my experiences of my Sri-Lanka visit. As a matter of fact in such a long visit there are always sweet and bitter experiences. Ours have no difference. There was a Russian family in our residence with whom Irfan talked. Once they came to Irfan and expressed their sorrow of losing more than one hundred dollar. Such may happen when one is not alert. So, while visiting any foreign country one should always be vigilant or various problems may arise. However, by the by he told their money is taken by some one from the residence. I doubt in it because the staff host residences employ must also be sincere. Though I do not know what actually happened whether they lost that some where in the beach or any one stolen that from the residence.

In my previous writings, I told you, in general Sri-Lankan are very nice men. In the bus, train and other public places they do not talk much. I heard about no pick pocket and hijack case. Here polices are very helping. Though most of the Sri-Lankan do not understand English and other languages yet some how or other they helped me finding my station in the bus and train and my abode while I was walking alone in search of that even by night.

As for example once I came from Colombo by train but I got no Kodapadu bound bus in the Negombo bus station. Police helped me by telling to go to the crossing for a Tuk Tuk. He did not take extra interest about me and I feel they never take any extra interest about a foreigner. So, foreigners there are not unnecessarily harassed by them.

However, I went to the road crossing and a Tuk Tuk driver was calling me. By this time a drunken man came and in Hindi he was talking with me and was guiding me about my destination. He took me to be an Indian.

By the by he informed me that while he was in a middle eastern country he had Indian and Bangladeshi friends. However, a drunken person could guess me to be a foreigner but most of the Lankan feel a Bangladeshi as Lankan till they talk and find him speaking Bengali. Its main reason is, people of both the countries look alike.

In Sri-Lanka what is odd looking for me was that there are many wine shops and every one can purchase any alcoholic drink from there. However, it is their culture and it should not be my concern.

Here best problem about Lankan’s is; since many of them are dealing with tourists they some times give priority of their interest only. What happened with us was as follows:

a) After landing in Sri-Lanka without knowing nicely we have given worth Rupee 10,000 equivalent in Euro to a great Doctor (we do not like to mention his name because he will not like it, we hope in future he will give priority to honesty) who was searching boarder in the airport. This we did to hire his residence in advance though we told him final decision will be taken later on and what he admitted. As the Doctor’s house was in Colombo (6 or 11) and far away from the beach and his residence was costly due to our low budget we decided to take a residence at Negombo at low cost but the Doctor did not pay us back the advanced money. So, our advise to the potential travelers is that they should pay in advance after taking final decision or before boarding only. Otherwise, You may not get your money back. This is what happened in our case.

b) During traveling towards Sri Pada ie Adam’ Peak in the Hatton station we missed the bus for our own mistake. So, we paid Rupee 5200 for a micro bus including parking charge in a parking area. If we would get bus we would require Rupee 100 or bit more per person. So, our advice, one should do right thing in a right time otherwise one may even miss aircraft. This is also happened in case of the crazy traveler Irfan. Once he was visiting Venice from Paris. During his return he reached the Venice airport well in advance. But he thought, “Let me try to sleep because the aircraft will fly at about 5 ‘o clock in the morning.” But when he got up the airplane had already taken off. So, he had to purchase a new ticket and returned to Paris.

c)As we missed the bus, we had to change dollars in Hatton for extra money. But the rate was very less. So, our advise, one should change money while in Sri-Lanka either in Colombo or Negombo from appropriate place by judging proper rate.

d) Our other loss was after the money change when we counted money later, we got no trace of Rupee 5000. Still, we do not know, whose fault was this. So, our advice is after all the transactions in a foreign country we should be sincere enough to count. Mere faith on a person is not enough and we should not do hurry at any case.

e) In the way many Lankan may try to talk with you. Our advice, be friendly with them and honor their warm activities. They will help you to know the Sri-Lanka more as Tuk Tuk driver Nausad, bus passenger Wasim, an unknown airman of Sri-Lankan Airforce, a police inspector of Sri- Lankan Police, Eros a train Passenger and many other tried to help me by giving various information.

f) However, many things you will like and others you may not like. As now I am writing good about Breeze Residence and about Mr. Ram for his nice dealings with boarders and receiving reasonable charge but I could also write good about the Residence of honorable Doctor. However, my pen is not helping me for his selfish like manner. He has given priority to Rupee about 10,000 not sincerity and Irfan’s blind faith on him.

Insha Allah we will take off for our motherland by a Lankan Airliner on 2nd, February, 2017. Good bye Sri-Lanka and its good people. I shall remember this memorable visit for a long time.

Seminar on Improved Flower Cultivation Methods and Potentiality of Export Organized by Export Promotion Bureau of Bangladesh : Dr Syed Md Zainul Abedin

Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) of Bangladesh organized a special seminar on Improved Flower Cultivation Methods and Potentiality of Export on 25 January,2017 at its head office located in Kawran Bazar,Dhaka.Dr. Farjana Nasrin Khan,Senior Scientific Officer of Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI) presented the keynote paper at the seminar.A good number of stakeholders of the promising flower industry attended the seminar.The existing situation of flower industry and way forward were revealed in the seminar.

The seminar was initiated by the welcome address of Mr. Md Jahangir Hossain, Director (Policy and Planning),EPB. Mrs.Mafruha Sultana,Vice Chairman,EPB presented the inaugural speech and declared the seminar open.She elaborated the programmes of EPB regarding the export of flowers from Bangladesh and stated that all necessary measures would be taken to support export of flowers.

Dr. Farjana Nasrin Khan presented the keynote paper emphasizing all aspects of flower farming and export.She pointed out the prospects and constraints in connection with the production of quality flowers and their export.After her lively presentation
the floor was opened for discussion and question and answer session.Professor Dr. AFM Jamal Uddin of Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University,Dr.Shah Md.Shaiful Islam of Shah nursery Jhenaidah,Kazi Liakat Ali of Root and Shoot,Mr.A K M Manirul Alam,Deputy Director(Fruit and Flower) of Horticulture Wing of Department of Agricultural Extension(DAE),Mr.Mohammad Quamaruzzaman,Senior Assistant Secretary of Bangladesh Export Processing Zone (BEPZA),Ms.Kamrunnahar,Additional Deputy Director of Plant Quarantine Wing of DAE and a number of other participants joined in the open discussion and presented very important points for successful management of flower production and export.
Mr.Avijit Chowdhury,Director General-1,Export Promotion Bureau concluded the seminar with optimism and thanked the keynote presenter and participants for their valuable contributions.

Mr.Md. Jakir Hossain,Deputy Director(Policy),EPB conducted the event.

The seminar was a milestone for the flower industry of Bangladesh.It may be reasonably hoped that the flowers grown by Bangladeshi farmers will soon bring recognition for Bangladesh in the foreign countries and strengthen the economy of Bangladesh.

Lanka’s Holiday Travelers : Syed Mohd. Saleh Uddin

Sri Lanka is a peaceful land. It is famous for Adam’s peak in the Sri-Padaya mountain range, tea plantation in the mountainous area, beautiful sea beaches, coconut palm orchards, flowers and faunas in the mountainous and forest area, Negombo’s very nice looking lagoon etc. Every year thousands of crazy travelers from the west and elsewhere visit this land. Now we are visiting it. Irfan is with us also. He is a crazy traveler.

Irfan told the story of his last visit to Spain. Travels bring immense pleasure for the individuals but sometimes it brings also sorrow. It is such a story. Now he is travelling to Sri Lanka in the way to Malaysia and Thailand.

During his last Holy days he traveled from France to Spain. At the end of his holy day he had to return in due time to join his University. So, he needed a train ticket but unluckily his credit card was not responding and his payment was not made by the machine.

But he would had to return. Being a student of a France University he could not stay in Spain for a long time. So, he took risk and got a France bound train in Bilbao station. He knew in the European rail one may get train without ticket and in this case the passenger will be fined which is payable later in his residing country.

In due time he was checked by the ticket checker in the train. Irfan explained his problem to him and requested to allow him imposing due fine. But the Spain Railway ticket checker made him bound to got down in Lemoa station. It was a hilly station but unknown to him.

It was utter surprise for Irfan that an old but kind hearted retired man named Huan Carlos living around that station came forward and helped him giving money to purchase a ticket and food. Irfan expressed his highest gratefulness for his act of such kindness. We also give him thanks for his great and generous heart. Let almighty also make him happy.

In the past we saw in the case of the greatest travelers, many of them faced problem in their way. Some where some one created problem and what were mostly by the man of power but they were also helped by the men in the way what proved, “man is for the man”. Famous Arab traveler Ibne Batuta cited many such examples in his memoir (In Bengali Ibne Batutar Safr Nama).

By this time this crazy traveler Irfan visited Italy, Spain, Greece, Nether land, Germany, Poland, Switzerland, Serbia etc countries. He had also to face problems what were minor. In Sri Lanka also a house owner of Colombo declined to pay booked money though Irfan explained humbly about the problem of boarding in that house. In relation to Huan Carlos he is a great man and very learned Doctor. He failed to realize that this crazy student traveler saved his money to travel because he likes it. A student is never a rich man like a big businessmen. Once the Doctor was also a student too.

However,the Doctor has given priority of about 10,000 Lankan rupee not the sincere faith of the student who believed him. His saying, “I can not pay you the money, sorry- is not acceptable at all. I hope the Doctor will realize his fault!

Adam’s Peak : Syed Mohd. Saleh Uddin

It was January 24, 2017. Today on January 25 I met with Mr. Shiva and Mrs. Delrin. They are father and mother of Mr. Ram the owner of The Breeze Residence. Among them the father is a Hindu and the mother is a Christian. But they are leading their life peacefully. Their son Mr. Ram is also a nice man. I always seen him dealing with his boarders nicely. However, people of this land is tolerant to each other. This land is multi cultural in nature due to its inhabitants of different religious group and here Adam’s Peak is such a place which is sacred for all the followers of the major religions of the world. However, there are other places to visit. Whatever, the case may be while you are in this country where do you like to live? It is an important question. Those who come here in a package tour of tour organizers this post is not for them but those who come alone or with family it may be helpful one.

For the information of the Bangladeshi traveler I am giving the address of The Breeze Residence. It is near the Negombo sea beach which is in the 09 Perera Place, Kudepaduwa, Negombo, Sri- Lanka. +94 312230187 Mobile +94 771 662621. For information of the potential travelers from any where one may give a ring to Mr. Ram. For the long stay in the Sri Lanka such a residence is cheaper than hotel and they allow cooking. It means you will not face food problem.

So, you will be able to enjoy family life during your travel. Besides Mr. Ram is so friendly that he tries to give all types of comforts to his boarder and arranges transport for reasonable rate from car dealers for the tourists.

However, for the information of the travelers, it is worth mentioning that Train and Bus fare in Sri Lanka is quite cheap. As for example, I have visited Negombo to Colombo by Highway bus and Local bus. Fair of first one is 120 Lankan Rupees whereas other one charged only 56 Rupees. I visited Kudapadua to Palangatu only by 10 Rupees. I paid 2nd class fare of train from Hatton to Colombo about 260 rupees. From Hatton one may travel by Bus to Adam’s peak and its fare is very less but due to our fault we missed the Bus and paid a commission agent 5200 Rupees with parking charge for that distance for a micro bus. In the Bus we would had to pay not more than 500 Rupees for one way travel for four persons. So, imagine the difference.

But many of the visitors go to the tour organizers for transport because visitors come here for shorter time and want to complete their seeing in shorter possible time. It is also for your information that such organizations are established for business purpose and are surviving by getting commission and other profits.

Airmen of Sri Lankan Air force: Syed Mohd. Saleh Uddin

Just on 14th January, 2017 I have landed at the Colombo Airport in Sri Lanka with my wife and sister. It is a sight seeing tour. The main object of this travel is to visit Colombo, its adjacent sea beaches, Adam peaks etc. It is worth mentioning here that before visiting this land I have posted an entry in this site about Adam’s peak which was written by the help of various online articles. So, I had an intention to see it practically.

My wife was also weak about Sri Lanka because she heard from her mother ie my mother in law about their visit to Colombo sea port while they were travelling by Safina E Arab a passenger ship of then Pakistan when my father in law Gazi Mohd. Kahfel Wara was serving in the PAF. He was an airman. Now, he is not alive, but my mother in law is still alive and can clearly remember her visit to Colombo port. Though the sea liner only anchored there but none of the passengers were permitted to visit mainland.

At that time my wife was mere a child. However, in her old age her visit to Sri Lanka is granted by the al-mighty Allah along with my sister Fatema a travel crazi woman. For her previous service in the ICDDRB as a research assistant she had to visit almost all the important areas of Bangladesh. After her recent retirement from ICDDRB she was searching a good land to visit. We know about the beautiful Lanka. It has rich history and heritage. My one of the nephew Zaed a Sub Lt. of Bangladesh Navy recently visited Colombo for a mission and was permitted to land in the mainland from their BN Warship. He talked high about the land.

About me, while I was an airman of BAF I had chance to work in the No-3 Squadron of the BAF. It was a transport Squadron. Its one of Antonov-26 visited Sri Lanka. However, I was not there on duty. Yet, I thought, alas! If I would get chance. However, in my retired life and old age al-mighty Allah also given me a chance to visit the land. Thanks to him for that.

The intention of this post is to give thanks to Sri Lankan Air Force airmen whom I met during my visit to Sri Lanka. It was 15th of the January when I was walking near the Colombo rail station, I saw a SAF Corporal in uniform. I walked to him and given my air force identity. He told about his Radio trade when I told him about my Air Frame trade. He shook hand warmly and told about another person who was standing near him in civil dress to be a Squadron Leader of SAF. He also shook hand warmly. I asked the Corporal about my destination and he tried to help me giving information.

On 18 January again I went to Colombo by a local bus. While it stopped in a bus stand before a Sri Lankan Air Force Base a passenger got in and sat beside me. He is an airman of Account trade. His rank is Corporal. He also helped me while I asked him about my destination.

Whom I met they were very nice airmen. Thanks to them. Thanks to Sri Lankan Air Force.

ACCCRN Learning Forum 2016 – Keynote: The Importance of UCCR – Jo da Silva

Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN) is a leading regional network connecting professionals and communities across Asia to build inclusive urban climate change resilience (UCCR) that focuses on poor and vulnerable people affected by climate change. We commit to empower people in building climate resilience, influence urban agendas, and build a regional resilient community in Asia where there is rapid urbanization and fast-growing cities that are prone to sudden shocks, as well as long-term stresses. We need resilience now and in the future.

Jo da Silva is a Director at Arup where she leads Arup International Development, a specialist team focussing on addressing the challenges to achieving sustainable and resilient communities. She gives keynote speech to the ACCCRN Learning Forum2016 in Semarang, Indonesia.The speech uploaded in Youtube on Jun 15, 2016 has been presented here to disseminate to the larger audience.
The video may be watched in Youtube at this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dI2XXNOuE2A

Report of the Working Group on Climate Change of the FAO Intergovernmental Group on Tea

http://www.fao.org/documents/card/en/c/90db57ee-4bd8-4507-9bb8-2a411ed41a88/?utm_content=buffer51693&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Report of the Working Group on Climate Change of the FAO Intergovernmental Group on Tea

Year of publication: 2016
Publisher: FAO
Pages: #100 p.
ISBN: 978-92-5-109279-8
Job Number: I5743;
Corporate author: Trade and Markets Division
Countries: India; Sri Lanka; Kenya; China;
Agrovoc: brewing; tea; tea industry; India; Sri Lanka; China; Kenya;
Abstract:
Tea is the most used beverage second to water in the world. Presently, the climate change triggered by global warming is posing a major threat to the resilience of agricultural systems including tea cultivation. Increasing temperatures, changes to rainfall amount and distribution, coupled with major shifts in other meteorological parameters in comparison with long term observations have further complicated the production process. This compilation of adaptation strategies for tea cultivation developed and practiced by major tea growing countries of the world, is the first step taken by the working group on climate change of the FAO-IGG on tea to minimize climate change impacts on tea plantations. It is a joint effort by the scientists of Tea Research Institute of India, Sri Lanka, Kenya and China supported by the FAO-IGG on tea in Rome. This documentation is mainly targeted at tea planting community, policy makers and other users such as researchers, national and international research institutes and multilateral organizations dealing with sustainable tea cultivation, development and livelihood security of dependents.

Concluding Session of the First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience held in Dhaka Bangladesh on 19 December 2017

The First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience was organized in Dhaka,Bangladesh during 17-19 December,2016.The first ever event on such important issue was organized by International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD) at Independent University Bangladesh (IUB), and Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN), Bangladesh.The three day long activity was held in the Spectra Convention Centre with participation of large number of experts from relevant disciplines.The First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience succeeded to engage participants and different stakeholders from different government, private sectors, NGOs,Donors,INGOs, academics and communities to come up with more sound solution under the context of urban development.
I am adding the video of the concluding session of the three day event which summarized the findings of the event and announced the way forward.

Be a MEMBER of Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN) ACCCRN-ICCCAD Bangladesh

About ACCCRN
“ACCCRN is a leading regional network connecting people across Asia to build inclusive urban climate change resilience focusing on the poor and vulnerable people affected by climate change, through collaboration among actors.
We commit to create common understanding, influence urban agendas, and build ACCCRN resilient community in Asia where there are a rapid urbanization and fast-growing cities
that are prone to sudden shocks.
We need resilience now and the future.”
ACCCRN Works in 50 Cities
of 7 Asian Countries
Who Can Join?
ANY INDIVIDUAL:
• Government officials
• Local government
• NGOs, CBOs
• Academicians and experts
• Private sector and media
• Students
• ICCCAD Alumni members around the world

ACCCRN-ICCCAD
ACCCRN-ICCCAD Bangladesh intends to become demand-driven, self-governing
and sustainably financed knowledge platform.
The network supports to create knowledge, access resources among resilience practitioners and their base institutions across Asia. It also provides an ‘interactive space’ among the ACCCRN-BD members and bridges experts
and practitioners on UCCR

“Connecting people to build inclusive urban climate change resilience.”
Why Do I Join?

• To get connected with other practitioners
• To amplify your voice
• To support and collaborate
• For learning and sharing new knowledge
• To find partners
• To take action together to build inclusive UCCR

How Can I Join?

Membership is FREE and takes less than 5 Minutes

• First go to www.acccrn.net
• Then click REGISTER
• Fill up the form
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• Click Submit
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Thanks for Joining ACCCRN!
You will receive a confirmation e-mail

For further information, Contact with:
Sarder Shafiqul Alam
Country Coordinator, ACCCRN-ICCCAD Bangladesh
and Coordinator, Urban Climate Change Programme, ICCCAD at IUB
Mobile no: +8801711840441 Email: [email protected]

The First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience 2016 held in Dhaka, Bangladesh: Dr.Syed Md. Zainul Abedin

The First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience was organized in Dhaka,Bangladesh during 17-19 December,2016.The first ever event on such important issue was organized by International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD) at Independent University Bangladesh (IUB), and Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN), Bangladesh.The three day long activity was held in the Spectra Convention Centre with participation of large number of experts from relevant disciplines.The First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience succeeded to engage participants and different stakeholders from different government, private sectors, NGOs,Donors,INGOs, academics and communities to come up with more sound solution under the context of urban development.

The inaugural session was opened by keynote speaker Mr. John I. Carruthers, Director of Sustainable Urban Planning Program at George Washington University,USA. Mr. Carruthers expressed his concern that planning is not just about perspective or autocracy, but rather the choice we have as a society to find solutions, by weighing cost and benefit, for people with greater needs. The opening session also saw the likes of Honourable Vice Chancellor of IUB Professor Omar Rahman who emphasized his concerns for family planning as an integral part of resilience in the urban context. Dr. Saleemul Huq concluded the inaugural by saying that this would be the first of many urban conferences to come, where visionaries can establish ideas and knowledge to better understand the importance of better understanding urban development.

The first plenary session was hosted by Concern Worldwide with the goal to have a discourse with Honourable Mayors, Members of Parliament and Urban stakeholders to have an open discourse on how to implement SDGs better in the greater urban context.

The plenary session was followed by three parallel sessions. UNDP hosted the session on Ensuring Climate Vulnerability Assessments that influence Policy and Practice, Care Bangladesh hosted “Inclusive approach to urban resilience in Bangladesh” and Habitat for Humanity hosted the topic on “Building resilience in Urban Slum Settlements”.

It was interesting to see dialogue amongst stakeholders and participants, the keys points from these sessions were to have a more transparent dialogue between stakeholders, government officials and development workers and how to move forward from the current status quo for a more better and resilient urban cities for the betterment of people.
The second plenary session of Conference was hosted by ACCCRN-ICCCCAD. The main initiative behind this session was to Introduce ACCCRN and engages peoples in ACCCRN network. The country director of ACCCARN Sarder Shafiqul Alam represented the ACCCRN activaties and the point of engagements and the potentiality of this network. He also mentioned that this network is currently having 100 members in Bangladesh.

Dr. Saleemul Huq,Director of ICCCAD announced that the network has just started its journey in Bangladesh and with the hope to take the urban practitioners and experts under one platform and disseminate their knowledge to the policy makers and interested private sector.

The second day of the First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience started of with the third plenary session on Participatory Vulnerability Assessment organized by ICCCAD-IUB. The session’s keynote speaker Mr. Terry Cannon of Institute of Development Studies, UK covered an interesting topic on participatory vulnerability assessment where Mr. Cannon challenged the term Resilience in the current status quo. He highlighted key aspects why perception of people in understanding resilience is important and asked people to question problems by asking the “whys” of any situation more vastly. The second part of the day started with three parallel sessions conducted by Practical Action Bangladesh, ACCNLDP Project and Save the Children.

Practical Action Bangladesh highlighted how untreated waste and improper use of resources can lead to high amount of waste generation and came up with different practical treatment process to tackle the waste problem in the urban context. Their development practice has supported 378k people where 58% are women. Transforming waste into wealth through green practices is one of the main focus areas they are using to promote resilience.

Save the Children hosted the topic of Building Resilience in a city. They urged that cities are lifelines of society and engines for economic growth. Going into the session they approached participants and stakeholders on how to reduce vulnerability. Currently they work with urban children who are using their concepts of survival in a concrete jungle to face Climate Change by becoming self-reliant. A K M Mamunur Rashid of UNDP climate change specialist highlighted the importance of communities to adapt and protect them from disaster related shocks.
The joint sessions of ACCNLDP Project, Planning Commission and GIZ has highlighted on the integration of local plan in national development on their session tilted as “Development Planning Needs Better Integration”. One of the panelists Dr. Khurshid Zabin Hossain Taufiq, Director of Urban Development Directorate (UDD) has discussed about the local planning practices from the government side.

The second part of the second day of the First Annual Urban Conference consisted of three productive parallel sessions. The sessions were conducted by United Nations Development Program, Care Bangladesh and ActionAid.

UNDP conducted a session on Creative Thinking for an Uncertain Urban Future tried to come up with solutions for the greater urban problems of infrastructure and services. Dr. Saiful Momen shared his idea of “adopting a canal” by any group of people so that they can take the responsibility of looking after it. Mousumi Pervin told her dream of a green home in a new silicon city. She sheds light onto 4 solutions that are decentralization of functions and responsibilities, efficient urban planning, improved city governance and coordination among the different service providers. Innovative ideas from the audience were creating cities that can produce its own food, dictated an idea of a self-resilience city. Lastly the session chair, Dr Saleemul Huq shared his view of not seeing rural urban migration as a problem and states his idea of creating a challenge fund for cities outside the capital city to offer incentive for migration to those other cities, as a reward. Apart from this he also calls upon the younger generation to take up the challenge of climate change issue in Bangladesh as a prospect to harness the skills of tackling it and be able to share that knowledge with other countries.

The second parallel session by Care Bangladesh of Universal Health Coverage: Resilient to Health Shock of Urban Low Income Population sought to answer and procure ideas on how to resolve health inequalities in Bangladesh. The key note speaker of this session Dr. Muhammod Abdus Sabur, Public Health Professional and Consultant, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare addressed the public on how resources should be used efficiently to generate more effective health services. The participants responded by saying that government hospitals should stay open for 24 hours to address the vulnerable communities and private hospitals should provide minimum 10 to 20% of its services to the poor.

The third parallel session was hosted by ActionAid with an amazing interactive session on how to make “safer city for women”. The session was chaired by Farah Kabir,Country Director, ActionAid. The session started off with the video showing what women require and lacks basic rights in the greater urban context. The video showed problems of basic services like transportation, proper street lights and public washrooms in our city areas. The audience suggested better public transportation, improvement of bus stands, more accessible public toilets to the panelist as prospective initiatives for the general population with the idea of making our society more women friendly. The session’s panelist respected Dr. Engr. Tariq Bin Yousuf, Superintending Engineer in Environment, Climate Change & Disaster Management Circle & Project Director of Urban Resilience Project, Dhaka North City Corporation ended the session with the promise to the audience about the city corporation’s initiatives to make the city safer integrated for women.

The last day of the First Annual Urban Conference kicked off with the topic “Financing the Sustainable Urban Development Agenda” hosted by BCAS. The topic’s main focus was to uphold clear and sustainable financing in the urban context. The session was chaired by Dr. Atiq Rahman,Executive Director, BCAS and the chief guest for this session was Dr. Shamsul Alam, Member, Planning Commission,Government of Bangladesh. The panelists answered the questions on how government sectors are planning the financial sectors to adopt environmental practices at the same time major areas regarding planning issues were discussed. Dr. Alam emphasized that development is a destructive creation and highlighted proper emphasizes to mitigate problems related to this is important. He also highlighted any project that costs more than the economic cost of a society should be banned. Some Crucial suggestions regarding Transparency of financial sectors were highlighted by panelist Catherine Cecil, Team Leader, PROKAS pressed that financial transparency on every sector is essential to have solvency and to help out urban poor. The morning plenary was followed by a tea break where participants had an opportunity to network between panelists and participants.
The second part of the day started with two parallel sessions. BRAC hosted “Realities of the Urban Poor” Tackling Challenges and Leveraging Opportunities”. This session gave scope for recognizing the gaps and needs of urban poor and discussed about comprehensive directions in formulating and selecting more effective interventions for more inclusiveness development. Tamzidul Islam from BRAC gave importance to social, economic and ecological sectors in the urban context. His solutions consisted of rental basis urban housing, public private partnership, and House loans for long term and with low interest, Introduce lad readjustment technique and establishing control over rent. Professor Ainun Nishat Professor Emeritus, Centre for Climate Change and Environmental Research, BRAC University highlighted “Resilience” as a buzzword and instead any development initiatives in the current status quo should revolve around the term “Transformative society.”

The second parallel session “Building Community Engagement to Enhance Urban Resilience.Host: ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, South Asia”. ICLEI has developed a tool kit – ICLEI ACCCRN Process (IAP) which is being used by local governments to develop their own climate resilience strategy and protect themselves against impacts of climate change. ICLEI successfully promoted their tool kit to assess the cities vulnerability. One success story was shared by Md. Zulfikar Ali, Mayor, Mongla Port Municipality, Bangladesh. He shared with the participants about the success story of rainwater harvest implementation in his city. The session was conducted by Ms. Bedoshruti Sadhukhan, Programme Coordinator (Sustainability Management), ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, South Asia. The day’s session ended with a lunch networking session where the outcomes of the day’s findings were discussed.