The historic Homecoming Day of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the greatest Bangalee of all time, was observed today across the country in a befitting manner.
Bangladesh Awami League chalked out elaborate programmes marking the day. National and party flags were hoisted at the Awami League central office, Bangabandhu Bhaban, and party offices across the country in the morning.
On behalf of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Awami League General Secretary and Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader placed a wreath at the portrait of Bangabandhu in front of Bangabandhu Bhaban at Dhanmondi road number 32 at 9 a.m.
Later, Quader along with the party’s senior leaders placed another wreath on behalf of the Awami League.
The party’s Presidium Members Begum Matia Chowdhury, Dr Abdur Razzaque, Abdul Matin Khasru, Shajahan Khan and Jahangir Kabir Nanak, Information Minister and Awami League Joint General Secretary Dr Hasan Mahmud, Joint General Secretaries Mahbubul Alam Hanif and AFM Bahauddin Nasim, Organizing Secretaries Ahmed Hossain, BM Mozammel Haque and Mirza Azam, Labour Affairs Secretary Habibur Rahman Siraj, Science and Technology Affairs Secretary Abdus Sabur and Central Committee Members Dr Mostafa Jalal Mohiuddin were present on the occasion.
Besides, Dhaka city north and south units of Awami League, Jubo League, Bangladesh Krishak League, Awami Swechchhasebak League, Mohila Awami League, Jubo Mohila League, Jatiyo Sramik League, Chhatra League and different other organizations also placed wreaths at the portrait of Bangabandhu.
A discussion was arranged in a limited scale maintaining health guidelines at the party’s Bangabandhu Avenue central office in the afternoon. Prime Minister and Awami League President Sheikh Hasina addressed the discussion through a videoconferencing from her official Ganabhaban residence in Dhaka.
Krishak League also arranged a discussion at Engineers Institution, Bangladesh auditorium, Dhaka. Winter clothes were also distributed among distressed people on the occasion.
Krishak League President Samir Chanda chaired the discussion while Awami League Presidium Member Advocate Jahangir Kabir Nanak and Awami League Joint General Secretary AFM Bahauddin Nasim addressed it among others. Krishak League Joint General Secretary Biswanath Sarker Bitu moderated it.
Awami Jubo League arranged doa mahfil and exhibition of documentary and distributed cooked foods among destitute people.
Jubo League General Secretary Md Mainul Hossain Khan Nikhil, Presidium Member Advocate Mamunur Rashid and Sheikh Fazle Fahim, Joint General Secretary Subrata Paul, Dhaka City North Jubo League Acting President Zakir Hossain Babul and Dhaka City South Jubo League Acting President Main Uddin Rana were present among others.
Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) organized a discussion at Krishibid Institution Bangladesh auditorium. ‘Sabar Dhaka’ app was also launched on the occasion. LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Tazul Islam joined the function as the chief guest.
DNCC Mayor Md Atiqul Islam chaired it while State Minister for ICT Division Zunaid Ahmed Palak, Dhaka City North Awami League President Sheikh Bazlur Rahman and General Secretary SM Mannan Kachi addressed it among others.
Besides, all district, city, upazila, thana, union and ward level units of Awami League, its associate and likeminded bodies organized identical programmes coinciding with the central programme marking the day.
Bangabandhu, the undisputed leader of the nation and supreme commander of the country’s Liberation War, returned to the sacred soil of independent Bangladesh via London and New Delhi on Jan 10 in 1972, after 290 days of confinement in Pakistan jail.
The Homecoming Day of Bangabandhu this year came with an extra significance as it coincided with Father of the Nation’s birth centenary celebrations, just three months ahead of the golden jubilee of the country’s independence.
On the night of Mar 25, 1971, Pakistan army arrested Bangabandhu from his Dhanmondi residence and sent him to a West Pakistani jail the following day.
Bangabandhu was subjected to inhuman torture in the Pakistan jail where he had been counting moments for the execution of his death sentence that was pronounced in a farcical trial.
“I was a prisoner in the condemned cell awaiting hanging. From the day I went into jail, I didn’t know whether I was to live or not. I was mentally ready to die. But I knew Bangladesh would be liberated,” Bangabandhu spoke emotionally about his ordeal in Pakistani prison at a news conference in London.
On the Pakistani army’s slaughter of Bengalis, Mujib declared: “If Hitler could have been alive today, he would be ashamed.”
Earlier on Mar 26 in 1971, Bangabandhu proclaimed independence of Bangladesh and urged people from all walks of life to participate wholeheartedly in the nation’s War of Liberation.
Immediately after the proclamation of independence, Bangabandhu was arrested by Pakistani military junta and then flown to West Pakistan to keep him in prison there.
Though the final victory in the nine-month-long bloody War of Liberation was achieved defeating Pakistani occupation forces on Dec 16 in 1971, the nation’s expectations were fulfilled and the people got the real taste of victory with the homecoming of Bangabandhu on Jan 10, 1972.
On reaching Dhaka (Tejgaon) airport in the afternoon on Jan 10, Bangabandhu was greeted by tens of thousands of jubilant people who had been eagerly waiting to see their beloved leader since the final victory on Dec 16 in 1971.
From airport Bangabandhu was moved to the Racecourse Maidan (now Suhrawardy Udyan) where he addressed a spontaneous reception accorded to him by the cheerful countrymen believed to be one million.
He recalled with respect the contribution of all during the war and urged the people to rebuild the war-ravaged country.
Bangabandhu took oath of office as the country’s Prime Minister on Jan 12, 1972.