The construction of the much-cherished Padma Bridge was possible because of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's indomitable courage and taking up challenges, said Parliament Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury on Tuesday.
"Padma Bridge is a symbol of pride for Bangalees. It is not just a brick and stone bridge. This bridge is the symbol of our emotion and pride," she said at a function to unveil the cover of a book titled "Our Padma Bridge by Our Money" edited by Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen at Foreign Service Academy in the capital.
Pointing out that the bridge has become the economic lifeline of the south-western region of the country, the speaker said that a special plan should be taken to avail all kinds of benefits from it.
"For this purpose, it is important to take steps now. The Padma Bridge will give us the courage to overcome all future challenges," she added.
She said the book, which portrayed different aspects of building the Padma Bridge, would be considered an important document of Bangladesh's development history.
Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Anisul Huq, State Minister for Foreign Affairs Shahriar Alam and Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam also spoke at the function.
While presiding over the programme, AK Abdul Momen said there are 67 write-ups in this book. These include 50 essays, 10 poems and four interviews of the people who were associated with the Padma Bridge.
The foreign minister dedicated the book to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for her firm decision to build the bridge with the country's self-financing, wiping off all conspiracies at home and abroad.
Anisul Huq said the World Bank's decision to withdraw itself from funding the Padma Bridge was a blessing in disguise.
"Our self-respect has gone way up after constructing the bridge with our own funds. Our confidence in ourselves has become more robust," he added.
On the occasion, Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam said that in future, a PhD can be done in 13/14 subjects on the bridge. This book on Padma Bridge will serve as a reference.