The people of Rangpur sacrificed their three heroic sons while participating in the immense curfew-breaking protest processions during the non-cooperation movement on March 3, 1971 in the city, reports BSS. The three martyred sons of Rangpur were Sangku Samajhder, 12, a student of class six, college student Abul Kalam Azad, 22, and government employee Omar Ali, 45, of the city.
According to elderly people and freedom fighters, supreme sacrifice of three brave sons instantly created mass anger among the people of Rangpur uniting them to snatch away independence from Pakistani occupiers.
“The city turned explosive since March 1 when hatred Pakistani President Yahiya Khan cancelled the scheduled parliament session on March 3, 1971 and declared a curfew on the day,” said former Treasurer of Begum Rokeya University Professor Mozammel Haque. He said Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman with huge hatred vehemently rejected cancellation of the scheduled parliament session and called strike on March 2 in Dhaka and March 3 throughout the country.
“A meeting of student leaders was held at ‘Panga House’ in the city on March 2 chalked out next strategies with Chhatra League leader Rafikul Islam Golap in the chair,” said General Secretary of district Ghatok Dalal Nirmul Committee Moazzem Hossain Lablu.
Accordingly, thousands of people brought out massive protest processions breaking curfew on March 3 in the city when the whole Bangalee nation was in unprecedented non- cooperation movements against the Pakistani regime. “At about 9 am, Sangku of Guptapara area, came out without taking breakfast along with his elder brother Kumaresh Samajhder Babu, a student of class eight, and participated in the non-cooperation movement rally,” Lablu said.
Freedom fighter Akbor Hossain said the brave Bangalees paraded the streets chanting slogans ‘Tomar Amar Thikana- Padma Meghna Jamuna’, ‘Tomar Neta, Amar Neta- Sheikh Mujib, Sheikh Mujib’, ‘Yahiyar Mukhe lathi Maro- Bangladesh Swadhin Karo’. Originating from Kachari Bazar, student leaders from different areas organized the curfew-breaking spontaneous rally that was also attended by the then Awami League (AL) leader Siddique Hossain with hundreds of leaders and workers.
“At one stage, non-Bengali Behari Sarforaz Khan opened gunfire from his house in Alamnagar area at Sangku who succumbed to his injuries on way to hospital at 9:30 am,” said former District Muktijoddha Commander Mosaddek Hossain Bablu.
The news of martyrdom of Sangku instantly ignited sleeping bravery in every Bangalee when thousands of them came out to participate in the massive processions and started storming business centres and shops of the non- Bengali Beharis in the city. At one stage, the angry people attempted to attack the house of non- Bengali Sarforaz Khan, who opened the gunfire at Sangku, when the then EPR members created security circle there.
“Sangku was the country’s first martyr who was killed at around 9:30 am by Beharis though many other heroic sons embraced martyrdom on the same day across the country on March 3, 1971,” Bablu added. By this time, the non-Bengali Beharis shot student of Rangpur College Abul Kalam Azad to death at Batar Goli Mour and stabbed government employee Omar Ali on Dewanbari road in the city by noon further triggering anger among the people.
“Martyrdom of the three brave sons of Rangpur on March 3 factually ignited heart of every Bangalee and united them to take part in the ultimate struggle for independence as per the call of Bangabandhu,” Bablu added. Bangabandhu in his historic speech of Independence on March 7, 1971 at the then Race Course Maidan mentioned the death of the heroic sons including Sangku, who made Rangpur prideful forever by giving life.