Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today distributed the coveted Ekushey Padak-2020 among 20 eminent personalities and an organisation in recognition of their contributions to various fields.
The prime minister handed over the second highest civilian award in Bangladesh, to the awardees or their family members at a function organised by the Cultural Affairs Ministry at the Osmani Memorial Auditorium in the capital.
"Learning other languages is important, but mother language should be given more importance," the premier said in the programme.
She also emphasized on knowing the glorious history of the language movement for all generation.
"Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had large contribution in the movement, which you can learn by reading his book Oshomapto Attojiboni (Unfinished Memoirs)," she said.
"People tried to remove his contribution, but what is in history, will be in history. It cannot be removed," she added.
The Cultural Affairs Ministry announced the names of the recipients on February 5.
Aminul Islam Badsha (posthumous) was selected for his role in the Language Movement.
Begum Dalia Nowshin, Shankar Roy and Mita Haque were recognised for their contributions to music while Golam Mostafa Khan, SM Mohsin and Prof Dr Farida Zaman for dance, performing arts and fine arts respectively.
Hazi Akhter Sarder (posthumous), Abdul Jabbar (posthumous) and Dr AAM Mesbahul Haque (posthumous) were chosen for their roles in the Liberation War.
Journalist Zafar Wazed (Ali Wazed Zafar) was picked for the award for his contribution to journalism and Dr Jahangir Alam, Hafez Qwari Syed Saifur Rahman Nizami Shah and Bangladesh Fisheries Research Institute for their roles in research while Prof Dr Bikiran Prasad Barua for education.
Prof Dr Shamsul Alam and Sufi Mohammad Mizanur Rahman got the award for making contributions to economy and social service respectively.
Dr Nurun Nabi, Sikder Aminul Haque (posthumous) and Begum Nazmun Nesa Piari were selected for language and literature while Prof Dr Sayeba Akhter for medical.
Each recipient received a gold medal, a certificate and a cheque for Tk2 lakh.