99th birth anniversary of Bangabandhu

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Published on March 19, 2019
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Anwar A Khan:

As long as Padma, Meghna, Gouri, Jamuna flows on,
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, your accomplishments will also live on.
-Anandashankar Ray

Today (17th March) is Bangabandhu's 99th Birthday. He was born on 17th March 1920 in the village Tungipara under the Gopalganj Sub-division (currently District). He is the preeminent Bengali of a thousand years in the Bengal history; a great patriot; a great politician of world stature.

It will not be exaggerated to say in the words of eminent Journalist Cyril Dunn, "In a sense, Sheikh Mujib is a greater leader than George Washington, Mahatma Gandhi and De Valera." Bangabandhu was a Minister in our pre-independence period and became both Prime Minister and President after Bangladesh came into being. He was the dominant figure in Bangladesh's politics for almost 4 decades.

He was born to do politics and power, served as a decisive leader. Noted Egyptian journalist Mohamed Hassanein Heikal said, "In the thousand year history of Bengal, Sheikh Mujib is only leader who has, in terms of blood, race, language, culture and birth, been a full blooded Bengali. His physical stature was immense. His voice was redolent of thunder. His charisma worked magic on people. The courage and charm that flowed from him made him a unique superman in these times."

His political followers along with academics, intellectuals, creative writers, artists, journalists--influenced by his ideas and actions--charted out his 99th birth day, on March 17, 2019. We shall remember this stormy petrel of Bangladesh's politics in different parts of the country along with general public, workers, political leaders, intellectuals, social workers.

Throughout his life, Mujib was a man of action and a hero in leading powerful people's movements against Pakistan's colonial rule for more than 2 decades. He developed techniques of peaceful collective actions, non-violent civil disobedience against injustice and finally re-modelled methods of mass protests through armed struggles under the compelling situation.

His framework of social-economic transformation, politics is the real moving force. In his concept of political theory and practice, struggle and constructive work, democracy and civil disobedience are combined together. Like Marx, his emphasis was on struggle but he first discarded the idea of violence. He tried to refine the Gandhian techniques of non-violence; by accepting non-violent methods of struggle but adding mass-based civil disobedience against injustice and exploitation.

He was a dedicated nationalist par excellence. His life is entwined with Bangladesh. Bangabandhu became the international symbol of a free Bangladesh. His brutal murder was regarded as an international catastrophe. His place in humanity was measured not in terms of the 20th and 21st centuries but in terms of history. He was full of nationalist ideas. The Sheikh represented the season of youth and triumphant joy of an invincible spirit of fight and uncompromising loyalty to the cause of freedom.

He is the patriot of patriots. His "Joy Bangla" slogan was the battle cry of our freedom fighters during our glorious Liberation War in 1971 and he roused the nation to a great patriotic height. He is the symbol of the heroism of the Bengalis of Bangladesh. Bangabandhu was a fountain of zeal. All over the country tributes shall be paid to this great hero who fought for freedom and sacrificed his life for the cause of his people. Even today, the heroic spirit of Bangabandhu is an unfailing source of inspiration to the youth of the country. His courage, spirit of adventure and patriotism are an example to one and all. He is a great patriotic Bangladeshi political leader, Bangladesh has ever produced.

Turn the pages of Bangladesh's political history, and you are sure to find one man who clearly outshines all others and manages to attract the attention and interest of all, till date, -Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman! Rising from a modest and humble beginning, it was his sheer determination and honest effort that led him to the nation's highest office.

A devoted nationalist, he adapted to rapidly changing tides in Bengali politics, dedicating his entire career towards the creation, development of his homeland and its people. It was all for these reasons that he is rightly known as "The Father of the Nation". His birthday is a public holiday in Bangladesh and celebrated throughout the country with due honour. The Sheikh is remembered as one of the greatest figures in Bengali nationalism.

The national leaders lead their nations. But the best of them give their lives for the good of their nations. They dedicate themselves in the interest of their nations. So, if they die they become martyrs and if they live they become heroes. Bangabandhu was the greatest national leader of Bangladesh. He is a martyr. He died for his country. He built the Bengali Nation. He brought freedom to Bangladesh and his people. So, he is revered as "The Father of the Nation."As a visionary political thinker, we should pay our due respect to him on March 17. We salute him on his 99th Birthday.

Joy Bangla. Joy Bangabandhu.

Source: Daily Observer