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Last Updated: Saturday, 14 October 2006, 08:17 GMT 09:17 UK
Press pride at Nobel Prize win
Nobel prize winner Muhammad Yunus celebrates with his daughter Dina
Muhammad Yunus: 'World banker to the poor'

Papers in Bangladesh warmly welcome the award of the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize to Dr Muhammad Yunus and the Grameen Bank, calling for a national holiday in celebration. But some commentators point to perceived shortcomings in Dr Yunus' anti-poverty project.


The Nobel Committee has rightly evaluated a friend of the poor.

Shafiq Rehman in JAI JAI DIN

The Nobel for Dr Yunus will now silence the voices of those who want to prove that Bangladesh is a failed and dysfunctional state.


Dr Yunus has surprised the world by proving that the poorest of the poor are also responsible. They can be granted loans without collateral and their record is much better than that of those in the western world.


We think Dr Yunus should be given a state honour and the government should announce a national holiday for this.


While this is an occasion for national celebration, this is also a time for revaluation of the project from the point of view of its impact on poverty alleviation. The high interest rates of Grameen Bank loans are crippling and there are reports of some poor clients having to liquidate whatever assets she or he possesses to pay the usurious interest. Critics also say this loan has a self-perpetuating character and the creditor is seldom rid of his chronic indebtedness. These snags, holding back maximisation of benefits for the poor, need to be addressed.


Prof Yunus did not stop at extending credits only. He showed his mettle in diversifying in other areas of businesses like textile manufacturing (Grameen Check) and Grameen Phone.


We call upon the government to organise a national reception to recognise Dr Muhammad Yunus ... we also call for a national holiday, as well as a day of national celebration.


Our expectation from Grameen Bank and Dr Yunus increases. Side by side Dr Yunus' responsibility increases. He also has some limitations. The Grameen Bank is not above many questions.

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaux abroad.

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