Nurul Islam Hasib
The ‘Mujib Barsho’ countdown has begun worldwide with Bangladesh missions abroad holding different events highlighting the life and works of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
The foreign ministry also set up a huge digital display and countdown clock at its premises in Dhaka on Friday following the national inauguration by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
The foreign ministry said on Saturday all missions abroad also observe the countdown on Friday, which was also the homecoming day of Bangabandhu.
The Mujib Year will be celebrated from March 17, 2020 to March 17, 2021. March 17 is the birthday of Bangabandhu, the undisputed leader of the nation.
Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen earlier said 77 missions have taken 261 programmes throughout the Mujib Year.
United Nations: Ambassador Rabab Fatima, the Permanent Representative of Bangladesh to the United Nations, announced that a year-long programme involving the UN would organise celebrating the birth centenary of the greatest Bengali of all times.
She declared this while celebrating the Homecoming Day of the Father of the Nation as well as inaugurating the countdown to ‘Mujib Year’ at the Mission’s Bangabandhu Auditorium.
The messages of President and Prime Minister issued on this occasion were read out at the beginning of the event. Later, a video documentary prepared to highlight the significance of the day was screened.
In her remarks, Ambassador Fatima said, “The return of the Father of the Nation to independent Bangladesh in 1972 marked the full accomplishment of our independence”.
Observing that this year’s celebration of homecoming day on the eve of the birth centenary had special significance, she said, “The celebration of birth centenary of the Father of the Nation is not only a formality, it is a philosophy too. We shall practice this philosophy, maintain it deeply in our thoughts and feelings, and we shall reflect this philosophy in our work for the development of our country and the nation”.
At the end of her remarks, the Permanent Representative to the UN formally inaugurated a countdown clock to be displayed at the mission following a similar countdown ceremony by the Prime Minister in Dhaka.
Washington: The Bangladesh embassy said the countdown of “Mujib Year” started off ceremoniously in Washington, D. C. Friday with the celebration of the ‘Homecoming Day” of the Father of the Nation.
Ambassador Mohammad Ziauddin declared the countdown by releasing a bunch of 100 colorful balloons in the air to celebrate the birth centenary of Bangladesh’s founding leader.
Earlier, the Ambassador accompanied by officers and employees of Bangladesh embassy placed wreaths at the bust of the Father of the Nation.
The messages of the President and the Prime Minister marking the Home Coming Day and the Countdown of the “Mujib Year” were also read out.
Defence Attache Brig Gen Moinul Hassan, Minister (Economy) Mahadee Hassan, Minister (Press) Shamim Ahmad and Minister (Consular) Mohammad Habibur Rahman readout the messages. A video was presented on the countdown of Bangabandhu’s birth centenary.
Speaking on the occasion, Ambassador Ziauddin said Bangabandhu is the most charismatic political personality the Bengali nation has ever given birth to.
He said the magnetic power of his historic call on March 7, 1971 united the Bengali nation as one achieving the independence of Bangladesh.
The Ambassador said Bangabandhu’s vision lives on even today with his daughter Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina who is working without rest or respite to realize her father’s unfulfilled dream of Sonar Bangla.
Ziauddin said the celebration of Bangabandhu’s birth centenary is a cherished event in our national life. It is a great opportunity for the new generation to learn more about Bangabandhu’s life and his selfless sacrifice for them, he added.
Denmark: A good number of Bangladeshi community members which included political figures, artistes, professionals working with the various Danish government and non-government organisations and UN bodies and their family members gathered at the chancery in Copenhagen to attend the first national event of the year.
“Bangalees relished the true essence of the long-cherished victory only when the Father of the Nation stepped into the sacred soil of newly independent Bangladesh on 10 January 1972,” Ambassador of Bangladesh to Denmark Muhammad A Muhith said in his speech.
The discussion programme started with the recitation from the Holy Quran followed by observing one-minute silence in honour of the brave sons of the soil, placing of flower wreath at the portrait of the Father of the Nation, reading out of messages of the President and Prime Minister released on this occasion.
A cake was cut to launch the Countdown Ceremony of the Birth Centenary of the Father of the Nation. A documentary on Bangabandhu's Homecoming Day was screened.
In a lively open discussion session, community members spoke on the different aspects of Homecoming Day and assured to lend their hands for successful organization of the year-long celebration which includes, among others, installation of a bust of the Father of the Nation and a 'Shaheed Minar' at the Chancery premises owned by the Government of Bangladesh, photo & painting exhibitions, cultural programmes, seminar & symposium on the life and works of Bangabandhu, and film festival.
In his speech, Ambassador Muhith paid deep homage to the memories of Bangabandhu, freedom fighters, martyrs and the women who lost their lives and dignities during the liberation war.
He highlighted the importance of Bangabandhu's return to Bangladesh in the early months of the victory which had paramount importance both at home and abroad to legitimate Bangladesh's struggle for independence earned through sacrifices made by the millions under the supreme leadership of Bangabandhu.
Earlier, the day-long programme began in the morning with hoisting of national flag by the Ambassador in the presence of the Mission officials. The programme was rounded off with refreshment hosted by the Embassy.
The launching programme of countdown of birth centenary celebration and Homecoming Day of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman were observed today with due fervor and solemnity at the Bangladesh Embassy in Hanoi, Vietnam.
The homecoming of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman from the Pakistani jail on January 10 in 1972 was the culmination of Bangladesh’s victory in the nine-month War of Liberation against Pakistani occupation forces.
Vietnam: Bangladesh Ambassador to Vietnam Samina Naz officially inaugurated the celebration programme held on the mission premises, said a press release. Members of expatriate Bangladesh community, officials and staff of the embassy were present there.
Special prayer was offered seeking eternal peace of the departed souls of Bangabandhu and his family members as well as prosperity of the nation. Besides, a documentary on Bangabandhu’s Homecoming Day was screened on the occasion.
Messages from President M Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina were also read out.
Through lighting candle, the mission was linked to live telecast of the colorful ceremony at the National Parade Ground in Dhaka marking the start of the countdown of the celebration of Mujib Barsha, the centenary of the birth of Bangabandhu.
The members of the mission enthusiastically watched the ceremony which was marked by a speech of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the unveiling of Mujib Barsha Logo and the digital display of the countdown.
Australia: A web clock to countdown the 100th Birth anniversary of the Father of the Nation has been inaugurated today at Bangladesh High Commission Canberra.
The web clock is placed at the homepage of the High Commission’s webpage (https://www.bhcanberra.com/) which would cease counting at the zero hours of 17 March 2020.
To commemorate the birth centenary of the Father of the Nation, Bangladesh High Commission Canberra has already opened a Bangabandhu Corner in last August.
It has chalked out an array of programmes throughout Mujib Year. Participation in the Multicultural Festival on Bangabandhu and Bangladesh, organising photo exhibition on Bangabandhu, holding seminars on Bangabandhu and emerging Bangladesh are a few mentionable among these.
It is expected that through these programmes, the greater audience in Australia including the expatriate Bangladeshi would get an opportunity to learn about Bangabandhu’s life, his contribution in particular to the independence of Bangladesh and his dream of an oppression free world.
After the formal inauguration of the countdown, the High Commissioner paid rich tributes to the life and works of Bangabandhu while referring to the homecoming day of the Father of the Nation.
Messages of the President and the Prime Minister on the occasion of the Homecoming Day of Bangabandhu were read out at the beginning of the programme.
Tokyo and Seoul: The Bangladesh missions in Tokyo and Seoul also launched the Mujib Year countdown.
The Bangladesh embassy in Japan began the ceremony at the Bangabandhu auditorium of the mission in Tokyo by reading out separate messages of the President and the Prime Minister, marking the historic homecoming day of the father of the nation.
Later, at a discussion speaker discussed various features of Bangabandhu’s tremendous leadership qualities in creating a nation as well as his ideology and lifelong struggle for establishing the right for the mass people of Bangladesh.
Japan: Charge d’ Affaires of Bangladesh mission Dr Shahida Akhter said the Bangladesh Embassy in Tokyo will organise different programmes in Japan as like other countries of the world marking the birth centenary.
She also urged cooperation from the local Bangladeshi expatiate communities to make the celebration a success.
The Bangladesh mission in Seoul, South Korea also held discussion on embassy premises on the significances of Bangabandhu’s Homecoming Day and the Mujib Year attended by embassy officials and Bangladeshi expatriates spontaneously.
Netherlands: The historic moment was also observed at the Embassy premises in The Hague with due solemnity and farvour. Apart from the Embassy officials, a good number of expatriate Bangladesh community members also attended the discussion program.
A documentary was played before the audience which was followed by discussion session on the significance of the historic Home Return day of Bangabandhu and its significance for building a booming Bangladesh.
The documentary took everybody to the actual moment of Home Return Day of Bangabandhu where millions of people gathered to greet their great leader.
Participating in the discussion session, leaders and members of Holland Awami-League paid tribute to the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
The program ended with screening the short documentary on the ‘Home Return Day of Bangabandhu’ and beginning the formal ‘Countdown of Mujib Year’ by the Mission.