The nation is observing the ‘Shaheed Dibash’ (Martyrs Day) and the International Mother Language Day today with due respect.
On February 21, 1952, the Pakistani police opened fire on a peaceful procession in Dhaka and brutally killed many people, mostly students, including Salam, Barkat, Rafiq, Jabbar and Shafiur.
People from all walks of life will pay glowing tributes to the memories of language movement martyrs, the valiant sons of the soil who made supreme sacrifices to establish the rights of the mother tongue, Bangla, in 1952.
The day is also being observed around the world as the UNESCO recognised the ‘February 21 (Ekushey February)’ as the International Mother Language Day on November 17, 1999.
Their demand was to declare Bangla as one of the state languages of Pakistan.
The day is a public holiday.
The national flag has been hoisted at half-mast and black flags flew atop government, autonomous and private offices across the country.
In observance of the day, the Central Shaheed Minar premises has been decorated with paintings, graffiti, buntings and selected verses on the mother language.
The government has taken extensive programmes to mark the ‘Shaheed Dibash’ and the International Mother Language Day in a befitting manner.
President M Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina have paid glowing tributes to the martyrs of the historic Language Movement.
The President paid the homage by placing wreaths at the Central Shaheed Minar at one minute past midnight tonight.
After him, the Prime Minister paid the homage by placing wreaths at the Central Shaheed Minar.
Both the president and the premier earlier issued separate messages paying rich tributes to those who embraced martyrdom.
State-run Bangladesh Television and Bangladesh Betar and private TV channels and radio stations are airing special programmes.
Newspapers published special supplements highlighting the significance of the day.