Dhaka – The nation paid glowing tribute to the intellectuals who were brutally killed by the Pakistani occupation forces and their local collaborators at the dawn of Bangladesh’s independence in 1971.
President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina placed floral wreaths at the Martyred Intellectuals’ Mausoleum in Mirpur recalling the contribution of the professionals in the country’s struggle for the liberation.
Thousands of people also thronged to the Mausoleum and Rayer Bazar killing ground to pay homage to the worthy sons of the soil.
The Pakistani occupation forces along with their local agents killed the professionals and frontline intellectuals in a planned way barely two days ahead of the victory in Bangladesh’s nine-month bloody war.
Historians say, they did it sensing humiliating defeat in the war.
Bangladesh observe the day as martyred intellectual day to remember the worthy sons of the soil.
The programmes of the day included raising of black flags and hoisting of the national flag half mast, placing of wreaths at the martyred intellectuals memorials and graveyards, discussions, lighting of candles in memory of the martyrs, morning marches, painting.
The programmes include general knowledge and hand writing competitions and prayers seeking eternal peace of the departed souls of the martyrs.
President M Abdul Hamid paid tributes by placing wreaths around 7:05 am at the Martyred Intellectuals Mausoleum at Mirpur here. He stood in solemn silence there for a few minutes as the bugle played the last post.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina paid tributes by placing wreath at the Martyred Intellectuals Memorial.
A smartly turned out contingent of Bangladesh Armed Forces gave a state salute while the bugle played the last post at that time.
Members of the cabinet, parliament members, the chiefs of the three services, the mayor of Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) as well as high civil and military officials were present.
Later, on behalf of Awami League President Sheikh Hasina, party general secretary Obaidul Quader along with senior leaders paid homage to the martyrs.
Besides, Awami League paid homage to Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman by placing wreaths at his portrait at Dhanmondi in Dhaka.
AL also organised a discussion in the afternoon.
Different political, professional, social and cultural organisations, including Jatiya Press Club, Dhaka Reporters Unity, Bangabandhu Gabeshana Parishad, Jatiya Party, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal, Communist Party of Bangladesh, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy, Bangla Academy, National Museum, Bangabandhu Parishad, Sammilito Sangskritik Jote, Sector Commanders’ Forum and Liberation War Museum also chalked out elaborate programmes to observe the day.
People from all walks of life, central leaders of the 14-party alliance, other social-cultural-professional bodies and war-wounded freedom fighters and members of the martyred families placed wreaths at the memorial in a large queue.