Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has called upon all to take a vow in the Mujib Year to take Bangladesh to newer heights in the international arena and transform the country into a safe and peaceful abode for the next generation.
"In the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, let us all resolve to take Bangladesh to even higher heights in the international arena; let us determine to transform Bangladesh into a safe and peaceful home for our next generation," she said in a message today marking the 'Mujib Year'.
The premier said her government is working tirelessly to build a hunger-and poverty-free developed and prosperous Bangladesh as envisioned by the Father of the Nation by formulating and implementing 'Vision-2021', 'Vision-2041' and 'Delta Plan-2100'.
On the occasion of celebration of the birth centenary of independent Bangladesh's architect and the greatest Bangalee of all time, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, she extended her heartiest greetings to all the citizens of Bangladesh, expatriate Bangladeshis and people of the world.
The Mujib Year has been declared from March 2020 to December 2021 to highlight the life and works of the Father of the Nation to the mass people, Sheikh Hasina said, adding that Bangabandhu's birth centenary celebration started with a grand opening on 17 March 2020 while along with Bangladesh, Mujib Year is being celebrated globally with the initiative of UNESCO.
"I pay my deepest homage to the Father of the Nation. I also pay my respect to all the martyrs of the 15 August 1975," the premier said.
Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib was born in Tungipara village of Gopalganj subdivision (now district) of the then Faridpur district on 17 March 1920, she said, adding from his childhood Bangabandhu was fearless, indomitable, brave and kind. "He (Bangabandhu) was conscious about politics and people's rights. The key aim of the long political life of this world leader who had keen memory and farsighted vision was to liberate the Bengali nation from the chains of subjugation, and ensure a developed life by freeing people from the curse of hunger, poverty and illiteracy," the Prime Minister added.
Noting that Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was a legend, she said, while studying at Islamia College in Kolkata, he got involved in active politics.
After the famine of 1943 and the communal riots of 1946 in Kolkata, young Sheikh Mujib with his classmates and colleagues devoted himself to humanitarian activities in the affected areas daring his life, said the head of the government.
After the partition of India, he returned from Kolkata and got admitted into the University of Dhaka, Sheikh Hasina said, adding discriminatory attitudes towards the people of the East Bengal by the elite rulers of the just-liberated Pakistan hurt Bangabandhu.
"In the meantime, attacks were made on our mother tongue. Bangabandhu came forward in the struggle to establish the status and dignity of Bangla language. In 1948, 'Rashtrabhasha Sangram Parishad (State Language Movement Council)' was formed on Bangabandhu's proposal by Chhatra League, Tamaddun Majlish and other student organizations," she continued.
On 11 March 1948, Bangabandhu was arrested while observing a strike to materialize the demand for recognition of Bangla as the state language and imprisoned thrice between 1948 and 1949, the premier categorically said.
Mentioning that Bangabandhu was continuously in jail from 1949 to 1952, she said both while in and out of the jail, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib had led the Language Movement.
"During the incident of killings of language movement activists on 21 February 1952, Bangabandhu was observing a hunger strike in jail," the premier added.