Every year, we take a step back to commemorate our gallant heroes who sacrificed their lives on the fateful day of February 21, 1952 in a bid to defend and uphold our mother tongue and secure it as state language.
Taking on the powerful state machinery of Pakistan, these young men defended the right of every Bengali citizen to speak their own language. In many respects, the language movement was more than a movement to defend the Bengali language; it was an endeavour to defend all that we hold dear in terms of national cultural identity. And now, for more than a decade, the whole world celebrates ‘Amor Ekushey’ with us in the name of International Mother Language Day. That alone should give us a lot of sense of pride to have the recognition of our identity.
And Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was one of the few student leaders who played the major role in shaping the movement into a mass movement in order to make it broad- based for establishing Bangla as one of the state languages of the then Pakistan and later that very movement propelled the nation, under Bangabandhu’s prudent leadership, in its struggle to liberate itself from the deadly clutch of the oppressive Pakistani force.