Thousands join Awami League's Victory Day march


Thousands of people from all strata took part in the colourful Victory Day march organised by Awami League in the capital marking the 45th Victory Day.

A stream of slogan chanting people from all walks of life, particularly leaders-workers-supporters of Awami League (AL) that led the war of liberation in 1971 and its associate and likeminded bodies, participated in the jovial march on a 3.5-kilometre route from the historic Suhrawardy Udyan to Bangabandhu Memorial Museum on Dhanmondi Road-32 transforming it a human sea.

Unlike the previous years, Dhaka City unit of AL organised the Victory March this year in a new political perspective as the capital punishment handed down to four top war criminals had already been executed and the nation was freed from an age-old stigma relating to the culture of not getting justice even after committing crimes against humanity.

Acting vice-president of Dhaka City AL MA Aziz presided over a brief public rally prior to bringing out the huge Victory March from in front of Shikha Chirantan (Eternal Flame) at Suhrawardy Udyan in the afternoon.

Awami League presidium member and Agriculture Minister Begum Matia Chowdhury, joint general secretary Mahbub-ul-Alam Hanif, Dhaka City AL general secretary and Relief and Disaster Management Minister Mofazzal Hossain Chowdhury Maya (Bir Bikram), AL organising secretaries Ahmed Hossain and Khalid Mahmud Chowdhury, information and research affairs secretary Advocate Afzal Hossain, office secretary Dr Abdus Sobhan Golap, AL Central Working Committee members Sujit Roy Nandi and Enamul Haque Shamim, Dhaka City AL organising secretary Shahe Alam Murad, health affairs secretary Dr Dilip Roy and Awami Swechchhasebak League general secretary Pankaj Debnath addressed the rally, among others.

Begum Matia Chowdhury called upon the people to remain united under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina with a view to strengthening her hands and the ruling Awami League. "The country has been marching ahead under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina defying all barriers and impediments. The inauguration of the main-phase construction of the Padma Bridge is a glaring instance of her unparalleled leadership," she added.

Mahbub-ul-Alam Hanif said, "People are celebrating the Victory Day this year in a new perspective compared to other years as capital punishment handed down to two top identified war criminals had been executed a few days back. Trial of the remaining war criminals would certainly be held on the sacred soil of Bangladesh."

"Our struggle will continue until we defeat the anti-liberation forces. So, we should be united as a nation to strengthen the hands of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to complete the unfinished tasks of independence," he added.

Prior to inauguration of the Victory March, central leaders of AL placed wreaths at the altar of Shikha Chiratan (former Race Course) paying deep homage to the martyrs of the Liberation War at about 4-20 pm, when the defeated Pakistani occupation forces surrendered to the Mitra Bahini (allied forces) on December 16, 1971. With the surrender of the Pakistani occupation forces, Bangladesh emerged in the world map as an independent and sovereign state.

Carrying banners, festoons, huge national and party flags, big portraits of Bangabandhu and Sheikh Hasina and multi-coloured balloons, the marchers on board decorated trucks and on feet participated in the Victory March from different city localities and marched towards Bangabandhu Memorial Museum to the tune of drums and the historic March 7 speech of independence of Bangabandhu and immortal songs of the war of liberation.

The added attraction to the march was depiction of the scenes of mock frontal fights during the war of liberation, surrender of Pakistani occupation forces and their local collaborators and jubilation of the freedom fighters and people after the country's liberation etc.

A large number of people, particularly many women, joined the march on open trucks and horse-driven carriages.

Photo: The Daily Star