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Hossain, Lt Colonel Akbar

Hossain, Lt Colonel Akbar (1941-2006) army officer, politician. He was born on 2 November 1941 at Nanua Dighirpar in Comilla town. His father Hossain Ali was a lawyer. He passed Matriculation examination from Comilla Iswar Pathshala in 1957 and IA from Victoria College in 1959. He joined the Pakistan army in 1965. He completed his study from Kakul Military Academy in 1966 and joined 31-Baluch Regiment. In the same year he was commissioned as a Captain. He obtained his BA degree from Dhaka University in 1969.

Akbar Hossain joined the Liberation War in March 1971. He participated in the resistance against the Pakistan occupation army under the leadership of Khaled Mosharraf. With the formation of Z-force on 7 July 1971, Akbar Hossain joined as commanding officer of the third East Bengal Regiment. As a commander of 'B' Company he led the liberation force in Sector-2 and other areas like Chhatak, Tura, Bakshiganj, Hati Gachha. In recognition of his heroic role in Chhatak Operation in the War of Liberation Akbar Hossain was honoured with the state insignia of 'Bir Protik' by the Government of Bangladesh. After his elevation to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel he voluntarily retired from the Bangladesh Army on 31 December 1973.

After the floating of the United People's Party (UPP) on 1 January 1974 Akbar Hossain was elected as vice-president of the party. In 1977, Akbar Hossain along with the UPP joined the Jatiyatabadi Front, the political coalition forged by President Ziaur Rahman. He was the special secretary, joint secretary and vice-president of BNP. He was also the convenor of Comilla district unit of BNP. He was included in the cabinet of President Ziaur Rahman in 1978 in charge of the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources. Akbar Hossain was elected a member of the Jatiya Sangsad in 1979, 1991, 1996 and 2001.

Akbar Hossain was a member of the Bangladesh delegation to the United Nations General Assembly in 1978. He was also a member of the Tin Bigha Corridor Committee, Farakka Barrage Committee and Chakma problems solution committee. He was made the Minister for Forest and Environment in October 1993 and Minister for Shipping on 10 October 2001. He was the chief adviser to the Muktijoddha Sangsad.

Akbar Hossain attended the Conference on Coastal region held in Netherlands in October 1993, international conference on Garbage and Waste held in Geneva in September 1995. He also attended the conference on Environmental Development of the countries of Asia and the Pacific held in Bangkok in November 1995 and was elected its vice chairman.

He died in Dhaka on 25 June 2006. [Md. Ali Akbar]