Nation pays tribute to the Father of the Nation


The nation today once again remembered the supreme sacrifice of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman with observing the National Mourning Day and paying glorious tribute to him on his 42nd anniversary of martyrdom.

Wearing black badges, people in thousands from all walks life thronged the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum in the historic house at Dhanmondi Road No. 32 as early as six in the morning to pay their profound homage to the architect of independence of the country and the nation by placing wreaths at his portrait there.

On this very day in 1975, the self-confessed killers brutally assassinated Bangabandhu and 16 other members of his family and relatives. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the eldest daughter of Bangabandhu, escaped the planned assassination with her sister Sheikh Rehana as they were staying overseas then.

The nation today recalled the most brutal killings of history with profound and heartbreaking grief while refreshed their pledge to uphold forever the spirit of the War of Independence and protect the sovereignty of the country and the nation.

The month of mourning, however, began on August 1 through holding of various programmes including discussions, photo exhibitions and screening of documentaries on the life and works of Bangabandhu.

The state programmes for the National Mourning Day began with hoisting of the national flag at half-mast and raising of black flags atop public and private buildings, including Bangabandhu Bhaban as a mark of respect to the martyrs of August 15, 1975 carnage.

The day is public holiday. President and prime minister gave separate messages on the eve of the day, urging the nation to uphold and follow the ideals of the architect of independence who devoted his life for the well-being of the people and the country.

As part of the state programmes, President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina laid wreaths separately at the portrait of Bangabandhu in front of Bangabandhu Memorial Museum at 6:30 am.

After placing wreaths, the president and the prime minister stood in solemn silence for sometime showing respect to the great leader. A smartly turned out contingent of Bangladesh Armed Forces gave state salute at that time, while bugle played the last post.

A munajat was offered there seeking eternal peace of the departed souls of the August 15 carnage.

Sheikh Rehana, youngest daughter of Bangabandhu, Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, Chief Justice S K Sinha, cabinet members, prime minister's advisors, senior leaders of Awami League and 14-Party and senior government officials were present.

Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury and Chief Justice S K Sinha followed the president and the prime minister in paying tributes to Bangabandhu.

Later, Sheikh Hasina, also the President of Awami League, flanked by party's General Secretary Obaidul Quader and senior leaders placed wreath at the portrait of Bangabandhu on behalf of the Awami League.

After paying tributes to Bangabandhu, the prime minister along with her sister Sheikh Rehana visited the historic residence of Bangabandhu at Dhanmondi Road No. 32 which witnessed the world's most barbaric carnage on this day 42 years ago. They stayed for a while in the house, which now has been turned into Bangabandhu Memorial Museum.

Following the president and the prime minister and other dignitaries, people from all walks of life with wearing black badges placed wreaths at the portrait of Father of the Nation at Bangabandhu Memorial Museum.

Later, the prime minister went to Banani graveyard where her mother Bangamata Fazilatunnesa Mujib, Sheikh Kamal, Sheikh Jamal and Sheikh Russell and other martyrs of August 15 were laid to eternal rest.

Sheikh Hasina and Sheikh Rehana placed floral wreaths and spread flower petals on their graves. She also offered Fateha and doa seeking eternal peace of the departed souls of the martyrs of August 15.

In the morning, Sheikh Hasina accompanied by Sheikh Rehana, members of her cabinet and party leaders placed wreath at the mazar of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman at Tungipara in Gopalganj and offered munajat there seeking eternal peace of the departed souls of Father of the Nation, Bangamata Begum Fazilatunnesa Mujib and other martyrs of August 15, 1975 massacre.

Later on the day, Sheikh Hasina, Sheikh Rehana and other family members and relatives of the prime minister attended a doa mahfil in front of Bangabandhu Memorial Museum. Agriculture Minister Begum Matia Chowdhury and leaders and workers of Mohila Awami League attended the programme, organised by Bangladesh Mohila Awami League.

President M Abdul Hamid also hosted a milad and doa mahfil at Darbar hall of Bangabhaban after Zohr prayers marking the National Mourning Day.

A special munajat was offered there seeking eternal peace of the departed souls of Bangabandhu and other family members, who faced martyrdom on the fateful August 15 in 1975.

Family members of the president, secretaries concerned, civil and military officials and employees of the president palace attended the milad-mahfil and doa-munajat.

In line with the national programme, different ministries and departments, directorates and agencies and educational institutions arranged various programmes marking the day.

Similarly, all city corporations, district councils, municipalities and union councils organised different programmes to observe the day with due respect and solemnity.

Bangladesh missions abroad arranged discussions with hoisting the national flag half-mast atop their respective offices.

Awami League (AL) kept the national flag and the party flag at half-mast while black flags hoisted at the Bangabandhu Bhaban and all other offices of the party across the country.

AL arranged distribution of special foods among the poor, destitute and orphanages. The party organised milad-mahfil and offer doa at Bangabandhu Bhaban after Asr prayers today.

It will also organize a discussion meeting at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC) on August 16 at 4 pm with party president and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.

Bangladesh Betar, Bangladesh Television, private TV channels and radio stations arranged special programmes in observance of the National Mourning day.

National and regional newspapers have brought out special supplements on the occasion.

Later on the day, special prayers were offered at all mosques, temples and places of worships of other religions across the country seeking eternal peace of the departed souls of Bangabandhu and his deceased family members.

Photo: Saiful Islam Kallol

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