Dhaka, March 26 (IANS) Bangladesh President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday paid tributes to martyrs of the Liberation War at the National Memorial in Savar to mark the 44th anniversary of the country’s Independence Day.
The day marks the beginning of the fight by Bengalis in erstwhile East Pakistan for freedom, bdnews24 reported.
On the night of March 25, 1971, the Pakistan Army launched “Operation Searchlight”, a brutal and barbaric military assault on an unsuspecting population to crush the Bengali movement for rights and justice that had turned to a fight for freedom after persistent denials.
The nationís founding father Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was detained that night. Before he was picked up, he had proclaimed independence.
Hamid and Hasina laid the wreaths at the memorial. Cabinet members, judges, top brass of the armed forces and key government officials were also present.
Freedom fighters and victims of the carnage perpetrated by the Pakistani army have demanded that the day be recognised as “International Genocide Day”.
The demand has been made in a bid to make the world aware of one of the most brutal and cruel chapters in the history of humankind.
Sector Commandersí Forum of 1971 Liberation War, Ekattorer Ghatak Dalal Nirmul Committee, Muktijuddho-71 and other political, social and cultural organisations on Wednesday evening held various programmes to commemorate the ill-fated night.
Nirmul Committee acting president Shahriar Kabir said around 50,000 to 60,000 people, including students, teachers, doctors and intellectuals, were massacred in Dhaka alone.