Interview with Dr. Zafrullah Chowdhury

Gonoshasthaya Kendra,

(Peoples Health Centre) emerged from the field hospital of Bangladesh Liberation War. On March 25, 1971.During this time, news of the armed struggle of the Bangalis led a group of expatriate doctors working in London to organize the Bangladesh Medical Association. Two of the doctors, Dr. Zafrullah Chowdhury and Dr. M.A. Mobin visited the frontlines of the war and began treating wounded soldiers, known as “Freedom Fighters”, who were fighting a guerrilla war against the Pakistan Army. With the help of Bangladesh exile government in Calcutta, they established a Field Hospital on the eastern border of Bangladesh, near the Tripura and Comilla districts.

In April 27, 1972 with 22 volunteers and doctors, Gonoshasthaya Kendra moved to the southern part of the village Nolam, Bishmail, near the National Martyr Monument of Savar, 40 Km north of the capital Dhaka, with the motto ”Grame Cholo Gram Goro” (Let us go to village and build village), and with two Visions firstly, “The fate of the poor decides the fate of the country”, and Secondly, “Development of the country depends on development of women.”

The doctors and the volunteers resided in 6 tents at Savar working to provide better health care services accessible and available to people in the rural areas, particularly women and children in the newly liberated Bangladesh.

During the last almost four decades, GK has increased its coverage from 50,000 people in 50 villages in 1972 to almost 1.2 million rural population with 43 Primary Health Care centres with 5 Referral hospitals covering 631 villages, 28 Upazila of 19 districts across the country . GK is now one of the largest health care service providers outside the government of Bangladesh.


We welcome researchers and others interested in our work to visit and gain practical exposure to GK's activity in the field.


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