f) The leadership problem

Another frequent criticism is that the project is considered as depending too much an the charismatic leadership of Akhter Hameed Khan, the founder and, for a long time. director of the Academy, so that it would be difficult to extend the scheme to other areas without his leadership. There ,s no doubt that A. H. Khan is an outstanding and rather dominating personality. Much of the basic philosophy of the approach is his work and the result of his understanding the needs of the people, and much of the project is the result of his ability to persuade high ranking government officials to sanction the proposals of the Academy. The stamp of this outstanding man an the project is obvious to the visitor from step to step. If one asks what is done if a cooperative is negligent in repaying loans, one will get such an answer as: "A. H. Khan will go and make a speech to the villagers and then they will pay." If one reads about Comilla, one reads only about the director, whereas the Academy as well as the cooperative association also has a large number of excellent staff members. Besides, expansion does not require new original ideas but only application in other areas. Finally, A. H. Khan is out of office for five years. The project not only has not suffered, but the change in leadership initiated a reappraisal of what has been achieved and where the nee priorities in the second decade of Comilla's work have to be set. To argue that such a project depends an one man means to deny the possibility for rural development.