Nation honours 1971 heroes

Acting President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday placed wreaths at the National Memorial at Savar to honour the heroes who sacrificed their lives for the freedom of Bangladesh in 1971.

Published : 25 March 2013, 11:13 PM
Updated : 26 March 2013, 04:51 AM

On the day in 1971, people of then East Pakistan began a nine-month struggle to break away from Pakistan where Bengalis had been denied rights and suffered huge exploitation. Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman gave the call for freedom during his historic March 7 speech at the Ramna Maidan.

He was sent to a Pakistani prison after his arrest on 26th March 1971 even as the Pakistan army began a murderous assault on an unsuspecting Bengali population.

The day, being observed as the National Independence Day, began with 31 cannons firing into the morning sky on Tuesday.

At 6am, the Acting President and the Prime Minister placed wreaths at the memorial in Savar.

A smart contingent of the Armed Forces performed a guard of honour there.

Later, Sheikh Hasina placed wreaths again as the President of Bangladesh Awami League along with party leaders and activists.

State Minister for Liberation War Affairs AB Tajul Islam then led a team of the freedom fighters and families of seven Bir Shreshthas to place wreaths.

Opposition chief and BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia also paid her tributes by placing wreaths at the memorial along with the party leaders and activists.

Muktijoddha Sangsad, foreign diplomats and members of various political parties and socio-cultural organisations then showed their respect by placing wreaths at the memorial.

Thousands of people, many carrying green-and-red national flags, thronged the mausoleum as they sang the national anthem.

The Prime Minister later moved to the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum in Dhanmondi where she placed wreaths at the portrait of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Senior leaders of the ruling party accompanied her when she placed wreaths as the party chief.

She went to the Bangabandhu National Stadium to attend a children's rally and parade.

The Prime Minister is also scheduled to release a postal stamp as a mark of the Independence Day at her official residence, Ganabhaban, later Tuesday.