Mahfuzur Rahman: Today is the 95th birth anniversary of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, founding father of Bangladesh. Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is himself a history and he creates history about Bangladesh in his lifetime.
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was born on 17 March 1920 and till his assassination on August 15, 1975, he was a preeminent Bengali nationalist leader of Bangladesh. He headed the Awami League and was the first President of Bangladesh during the Bangladesh Liberation War, and later became Prime Minister in the independent Bangladesh.
Sheikh Mujib is popularly referred to as with the honorary title of Bangabandhu (Friend of Bengal).
Early life of "Bangabandhu"
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was born in the village of Tungipara, Gopalganj district. He was the third child of Sheikh Lutfar Rahman and Sayera Khatun.
Sheikh Mujib had one brother, Sheikh Naser, and four sisters and his parents used to call him "khoka" (little boy) out of affection.
When he was seven years old Sheikh Mujib began his schooling at Gimadanga Primary School, and two years later was entered into `Class Three` at Gopalganj Public School. However, he survived a severe infection at an early age that had left him with a weakened heart. In 1931, he entered Class Four at Madaripur Islamia High School, but the teenager had to be withdrawn from school in 1934, aged 14, to undergo eye surgery on one of his eye or risk becoming blind. He was admitted to Calcutta Medical College Hospital for the emergency eye operation.
Politics of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in brief
As a student political leader, Mujib rose in Bengali politics and within the ranks of the Awami League. An advocate of socialism, he became popular for his opposition to the ethnic and institutional discrimination against Bengalis, who comprised the majority of Pakistan`s population. He demanded increased provincial autonomy, and strongly opposed the military rule of Field Marshal Ayub Khan.
A war against the birth of Bangladesh had been started on March 25 night and he was arrested by the Pakistan Army in the early hours of Operation Searchlight.
He joined the Bengal Muslim League in 1943. During this period, Mujib worked actively for the League`s cause of a separate Muslim state of Pakistan, and in 1946 he went on to became general secretary of the Islamia College Students Union.
Mujib left the Muslim League to join Suhrawardy and Maulana Bhashani in the formation of the Awami Muslim League, the predecessor of the Awami League. He was elected joint secretary of its East Bengal unit in 1949.
In 1953, he was made the party`s general secretary, and elected to the East Bengal Legislative Assembly on a United Front coalition ticket in 1954.
Later following Suhrawardy`s death in 1963, Mujib came to head the Awami League, which became one of the largest political parties in the then joint Pakistan.
In 1966, Mujib proclaimed a 6-point plan titled Our Charter of Survival at a national conference of opposition political parties at Lahore, in which he demanded self-government and considerable political, economic and defence autonomy for East Pakistan in a Pakistani federation with a weak central government.
Following the political deadlock in 1971, Yahya Khan delayed the convening of the assembly. It was on 7 March 1971 that Mujib called for independence and asked the people to launch a major campaign of civil disobedience and organised armed resistance at a mass gathering of people held at the Race Course Ground in Dhaka and after his announcement of liberation Bangladesh started to move towards the independence.
Assassination of Bangladesh`s idol politician
On 15 August 1975, a group of junior army officers invaded the presidential residence with tanks and killed Mujib with almost all his family members. And by the assassination of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the nation has lost an idol politician who gave birth a nation like Bangladesh.
Timeline of few major events in Sheikh Mujibur Rahman`s life
• 1934 - Eye injury nearly makes him blind
• 1939 - Meets Sher-e-Bangla A. K. Fazlul Huq and Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy for the first time
• 1942 - (Officially) marries cousin Begum Fazilatunnesa
• 4 January 1948 - Co-finds East Pakistan Muslim Chhatro (Students) League
• 17 March 1948 - Support for Dhaka University`s employee rights
• 26 March 1949 - Expelled from Dhaka University
• 23 June 1949 - Appointed Joint Secretary of newly formed East Pakistan Awami Muslim League
• 14 February 1952 - Hunger strikes from jail during Bhasha Andolon
• June 1954 - Jailed for 7 months after Jukta Front win election
• 21 October 1955 - 1966 - Re-elected General Secretary of Awami League
• 11 October 1958 - Held as political prisoner for 14 months
• 1 March 1966 - Elected President of Awami League
• 1966 - Arrested numerous times for advocating 6-Dafa (Six Point movement)
• 1968 - 22 February 1969 - Arrested and tried in `Agartala Shorjontro Mamla` (Agartala Conspiracy Case)
• 23 February 1969 - Tofail Ahmed gives honorary title of "Bangabandhu" (Friend of Bengal)
• 7 December 1970 - Leads Awami League to landslide victory in General Election
• 7 March 1971 - Addresses over a million Bengali crowd with historic "Ebarer Sangram" speech in Ramna Racecourse, Dhaka
• 26 March 1971 - Arrested at the start of Muktijuddho and jailed in West Pakistan for nine-and-half months
• 8 January 1972 - Released from prison in Pakistan. Returns to independent Bangladesh two days later
• 12 January 1972 - Steps down as President and becomes Prime Minister
• 1973 - Leads Awami League to victory in Bangladesh`s first ever General Election
• 24 September 1974 - Addresses General Assembly of the United Nations in Bangla
• 25 January 1975 - Becomes self-appointed President and replaces all political parties with BAKSAL
• 15 August 1975 - Assassinated in his home in Dhanmondi, Dhaka, along with most of his family.
So, amid ongoing national crisis, all politicians in the country should follow this political leader. They should learn from this great man. If we learn from his life, we will be successful in resolving all kinds of national crisis and disasters.
risingbd/ DHAKA/ Mar 17, 2015/Mahfuz/ Augustin Sujan