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Historic May Day observed

Historic May Day observed

The historic May Day was observed on Wednesday (May 1) in the country and elsewhere across the world in a befitting manner. The day is being observed across the globe since 1886 commemorating the supreme sacrifices of the workers at Hay Market, Chicago, in the USA for eight-hour working day and upholding the rights of the working people. To press home their demands, working people had to sacrifice their valuable lives in tragic bomb attacks and police atrocities on May 1, 1886 and the following days. This year's theme of the day is 'Sramik-Malik Gorbo Desh, Smart Hobey Bangladesh (Labour-owner will build country, Bangladesh will be smart)'. President Mohammed Shahabuddin and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages on the occasion of the May Day, local media reported.

Various organisations arranged different programmes to mark the day. The Ministry of Labour and Employment arranged a discussion at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC) in the capital. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina addressed the discussion as the chief guest. Earlier, she handed over cheques of financial assistance to some labour families. She later witnessed a colourful cultural programme.

State Minister for Labour and Employment Md Nazrul Islam Chowdhury, Chairman of the Standing Committee on the Labour and Employment Ministry HM Ibrahim, Country Director of International Labour Organization (ILO) to Bangladesh Tuomo Poutiainen, President of Bangladesh Employers' Federation Ardashir Kabir and President of Jatiyo Shramik League Noor Qutub Alam Mannan spoke at the discussion. Secretary of the Ministry of Labour and Employment Md Mahbub Hossain delivered the address of welcome.

Several departments and offices under the ministry also observed the day by taking various programmes. Jatiyo Sramik League organised a workers' rally in front of the central office of Awami League at Bangabandhu Avenue in Dhaka in the afternoon.

Bangladesh Awami League General Secretary and Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader addressed it as the chief guest with Jatiyo Sramik League President valiant freedom fighter Noor Kutub Alam Mannan in the chair. Awami League Joint General Secretary Mahbubul Alam Hanif and Organising Secretaries Mirza Azam and Afzal Hossain addressed the rally, among others.

BFUJ-Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists and Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) jointly arranged a discussion at Jatiyo Press Club in Dhaka marking the day.

Chaired by DUJ acting president Nazrul Islam Mito and moderated by its general secretary Akhter Hossain, the meeting was addressed, among others, by BFUJ President and Chief News Editor of Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS) Omar Faruque, former BFUJ president Monjurul Ahsan Bulbul, former BFUJ Secretary General Abdul Jalil Bhuiyan, former DUJ president Quddus Afrad and BFUJ treasurer Khairuzzaman Kamal.

Marking the day, Green Bangla Garments Workers Federation and National Workers Unity Centre jointly arranged a rally in front of Jatiyo Press Club.

Besides, Communist Party of Bangladesh, Jatiyo Mukti Council, Jatiya Sramik Jote, Bangladesh Labour Congress, National Domestic Workers Centre, Biplabi Sramik Sanghati, Prabashi Sramik Kalyan Parishad, Sammilita Sramik Parishad, Bangladesh Trade Union Federation and Sramajibi Parishad and other organisations arranged discussions, cultural functions and rallies. Human chains were also formed.

The day was a public holiday. National newspapers published special supplements marking the day. Bangladesh Television, Bangladesh Betar and private TV channels broadcast special programmes and talkshows on the occasion.