Int’l Mother Language Day observed in Michigan


Bangladeshis at home and abroad observed February 21 as one of their tragic days,   as   a   national   holiday.    They    visited the “Shaheed Minar”, a monument built in memory of the martyrs and its replicas to express their deep grief, respect and gratitude to those who sacrificed their lives during the Language Movement on February 21 in 1952. 

Every year Bengalis living in Michigan of the United States observe the International Mother Language Day on February 21 by paying tribute to Bangla language martyrs through organizing various programmes to promote linguistic and cultural diversities. 

The original idea to celebrate International Mother Language Day was an initiative of Bangladesh. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), on November 17 in 1999, declared February 21 as the International Mother Language Day. 

The UN General Assembly then declared the year 2008 as the International Year of Languages, with the slogan "Languages Matter". Its resolution called upon the Member States to promote the preservation and protection of all languages used by people of the world. This decision of the international community is a great tribute to the Bangla language movement and the martyrs who sacrificed their lives. 

Languages are the most powerful instruments of preserving and developing tangible and intangible heritage. All moves to promote the dissemination of mother tongues will serve not only to encourage linguistic diversity and multilingual education but also to develop fuller awareness on linguistic and cultural traditions throughout the world along with inspiring solidarity based on understanding, tolerance and dialogue. 

Learning a new language has its benefits. One of the biggest advantages of being multilingual is that it improves tolerance and opens someone to interaction as well as to exploring different cultures. It can improve tolerance by providing cross-cultural understanding, making more comfortable with unknown and helping in establishing intellectual connections. Finally, it can be an amazing tool for traveling adventures and can open more doors for employment opportunities.