Rural development means the development of the village. Bangladesh is a land of villages. More than 80 percent of her people live in villages. So the importance of villages in our is very great. The development of the entire country depends on the welfare of these villages.
Rural development refers to a planned change towards the improvement of the economic and social lifestyle of the rural poor. In our country, rural development has various aspects. There are about 87,000 villages in our country. More than 75 percent of our population lives in villages. The most important of them are agriculture, education, communication, sanitary and health, cottage industries, fishery, co-operative societies community life, etc. This is done through increased production, equitable distribution of resources, and empowerment.
Good communication is essential for the development of villages. With this end in view, our government has taken some practical measures. Many new roads have been constructed and many old roads and culverts have been repaired. Means of communication should be developed more. There are various aspects of rural development. Agriculture, education, communication, health and sanitation, employment, empowerment, etc. are the most important aspects. So, it is clear to us that the development of Bangladesh entirely depends on the prosperity of the villages and the villagers.
Education is the backbone of a nation. Without education, a nation can not prosper. It is education which illumines the soul, broadens the outlooks on life, and dispels the darkness of ignorance. There is an acute shortage of schools and colleges in our rural areas. So, to educate our rural population, sufficient educational institutions need to be set up. Bangladesh is a poor country. About 85% percent of her population lives in the village. They do not know how to read and write. We can not reach the peak of prosperity and progress until and unless we can remove the curse of illiteracy from a lot of our people. Because, without eradicating illiteracy, rural development will remain nothing but a mere dream.
Bangladesh is an agricultural country. Agriculture is the lifeblood of her economy. Again about eighty percent of our people are engaged in agriculture who live in the village. So, farmers should be trained well and modern farming equipment and seeds should be made available in the villages. Even in this modern scientific age our agriculture is very backward. But at present, it is very happy news that our government has taken active steps and necessary measures for the progress of agriculture. Besides, irrigation systems, a supply of fertilizer, pest management, agricultural loan, etc. should be considered with care and revised where necessary.
“Health is wealth” goes the proverb. So a nation blessed with good health is the greatest blessing on earth. But we are far from this blessing. As most of the villagers are illiterate, they have no knowledge of health and sanitation. Water pollution, lack of awareness, lack of nutrition, etc. are causing suffering to rural people. Most of the villagers suffer from various diseases. Many hospitals, health centers, clinics, and charitable dispensaries have been set up in rural areas to ensure health facilities to the poor rural people. So, proper steps should be taken to ensure development in this field.
Pure drinking water was very scarce in the past. People used to drink water from ponds. As a result, they suffered from many water-borne diseases. Now a day’s every village has at least one or more tube wells.
Though eighty percent of our villagers are engaged in agriculture, a large number of them remain idle for the greater part of the year. The farming community remains idle for almost half of the year. Besides, there are a lot of people who are landless and jobless. They can be employed if the cottage industries are revived and developed. So, sufficient employment opportunities for this type of person should be created.
By raising more poultry and cultivating fish more, we can develop our villages. Our government has paid much attention to these things. The poor villagers are given the loan on easy terms. Many unused marshy lands have been brought under fish cultivation. Empowerment or more economic and political power to the rural masses to control the use and distribution of their resources should be ensured.
For the development of our country, rural development is the precondition. Through the development of the villages, our country will reach the peak of progress and prosperity. It can be translated into action if the govt. as well as the intelligentsia come forward and join hands for the improvement of the villagers. Let us all come forward and work with concerted efforts to develop our villages.