The nation is set to observe the historic March 7 tomorrow (Sunday), commemorating the epoch-making speech of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman which was described as the indirect declaration of Bangladesh’s independence in 1971.
This year the observance of the day will be more significant as the nation is celebrating the birth centenary of the Father of the Nation. However, this year’s programmes have been chalked out in a limited scale due to the Covid-19 situation.
The administration across the country, various social-cultural organisations, political parties, including Awami League and its associate bodies, have chalked out the programmes including hoisting of national flag atop all government, semi-government, educational institutions and public-private buildings, placing wreaths at portraits and mausoleum of Bangabandhu, discussions, rallies and various competitions for children across the country.
However, the landmark March 7 speech of Bangabandhu delivered at the-then Racecourse Maidan, now Suhrawardy Udyan, will be played throughout the day at important places in Dhaka and other parts of the country.
On March 7 in 1971, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in his fiery speech called on the freedom-loving people to wage a decisive struggle against the Pakistani rulers. In a thunderous voice at a mammoth rally at the Racecourse Maidan, he declared, “Ebarer sangram muktir sangram, ebarer sangram swadhinatar sangram (The struggle this time is a struggle for emancipation, the struggle this time is a struggle for independence).
The Liberation War began after the Pakistan Army launched ‘Operation Searchlight’ on back night of March 25 in 1971 against unarmed civilians, intellectuals, students, politicians, and armed personnel of the country.
On July 13 in 2020, the Cabinet declared March 7 as the “National Historic Day” in a move to observe the day nationally. Later on October 7 in 2020, the Cabinet declared March 7 as “Historic Day” instead of “National Historic Day” for observing the day nationally and internationally.
On October 30 in 2017, the UNESCO recognised the historic March 7 speech as part of the world’s documentary heritage by including it in the Memory of the World International Register.
The 19-minute speech of Bangabandhu was not only a call for the Bangalee nation to fight for freedom, it was rather a direction for all nations.