Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today extended her sincere greetings to the people of all languages and cultures of the world including Bangla on the occasion of the Shaheed Day and International Mother Language Day 2021.
“The UNESCO has been celebrating this day with due dignity since 2000 along with Bangladesh. Like every year, they have set a theme for this day- ‘Fostering multilingualism for inclusion in education and society’, which I think is very timely,” the premier said in her message on the eve of the day.
Noting that the importance of the language movement in the history of the Bangali liberation struggle is immense, Sheikh Hasina said, “Through this movement, the foundation for the inception of a non-communal, democratic, language-based nation/state system was laid”.
On this day in 1952, Abul Barkat, Abdul Jabbar, Abdus Salam, Rafiquddin Ahmad, Shafiur Rahman and many others sacrificed their lives to protect the dignity of “our mother language Bangla”, she said, adding, “Today, I pay my deep tributes to the memory of the martyrs of all languages, including Bangla”.
The premier remembered with the utmost respect all the language hero, including the greatest Bangali of all time Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who led the struggle for the dignity of the Bangla language, whose visionary historical decisions and supreme sacrifices have saved the existence of our mother land and people.
The turbulent days of the language movement in the glorious historical records of the Bangali from 1947 to 1952 have been serving as a source of inspiration in “our national life” from time and again, the head of the government observed.
Behind every achievement in the protection of the interests of the peace-loving people of this region lies the history of blood-shedding struggle and the sacrifices of countless lives, the Prime Minister said.
Pointing out that the Father of the Nation has been repeatedly imprisoned for leading the language movement, Sheikh Hasina said, at the Education Conference held in Karachi on 27 November 1947, a recommendation was accepted to make Urdu the state language of Pakistan.
When the news reached Dhaka, the students of Dhaka University immediately protested in front of Khawaja Nazimuddin’s residence, she added.
Shortly afterward, Sheikh Mujib, a law student of Dhaka University, used his organizational experience to play a very key role in the establishment of the Chhatra League in Dhaka on 4 January 1948, the premier continued.
In the first session of the Constituent Assembly on 23 February, Dhirendra Nath Datta of Comilla moved an amendment proposal demanding the inclusion of Bangla as a language of the Assembly, she said, adding that rejecting the proposal, Khawaja Nazimuddin declared in the Legislative Assembly that the people of East Bengal would accept Urdu as the state language.
But to counter the reckless decision of Nazimuddin, an all-party Chhatra Sangram Parishad was formed on March 2 at Fazlul Haque Hall of Dhaka University comprising Chhatra League, Tamaddun Majlish and other parties, the premier said.