On August 14, 1947, the Islamic republic of Pakistan was formed, comprised of two parts, East Pakistan and West Pakistan. After the Bangladesh liberation war, East Pakistan seceded from its union with West Pakistan and became a new nation, the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, on December 16, 1971. The new nation was confronted with the problem of massive rehabilitation, reconstruction of a war-ravaged economy, and maintaining political unity. The first premier, Sheikh Mujibur Rahamn (1920–1975), followed the ideals of secularism, democracy, nationalism, and socialism. However, poor governance, natural disasters, corruption, worsening economic conditions, and opposition from disgruntled elements threatened the stability of Bangladesh.

Annual floods and cyclones affected the economy of country. The famine in 1974 increased food prices and severely hit agricultural laborers because of ...

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