16 December : Victory Day and National Day
Prime Minister’s message on the Great Victory Day and National Day
Dhaka 16 December 2021 :
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has given the following message on the occasion of the Great Victory Day and National Day :
“Today is the 16 December- our great Victory Day. Bangladesh has completed 50 years of her victory. This is a glorious day of the Bangalee nation. Responding to the clarion call of the Greatest Bangalee of all time, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the Bangalee nation achieved ultimate victory on this day in 1971 after 23 years of intense political struggles and 9 months of blood-shedding War of Liberation.
I extend my heartiest greetings and congratulations to the countrymen on the occasion of the Golden Jubilee of our great victory. I recall with deep gratitude Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. I pay my tributes to four national leaders, three million martyrs, two hundred thousand dishonoured women of the War of Liberation and the greatest sons of the soil- the Freedom Fighters whose supreme sacrifices made independent-sovereign Bangladesh. I recall with gratitude those foreign states and friends who had extended their support during our Liberation War.
On the occasion of the ‘Mujib Year’ marking the birth centenary of the Father of the Nation and Golden Jubilee of our victory, colorful programs have been chalked out. In the wake of Coronavirus pandemic, the programs are being celebrated following the health protocols avoiding public gathering.
Under the undaunted leadership of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib, the Bangalee nation got prepared for independence through Language Movement of 1948-’52, Education Movement of 1962, Six-point Demand of 1966 and Eleven-point Movement and Mass Upsurge of 1969. The Awami League secured an absolute majority in whole Pakistan in the general elections of 1970. However, Pakistanis did not allow the Bangalee nation to assume power. The Father of the Nation realized that the oppression, persecution and deprivation meted out to the Bangalee nation would not be ended without achieving independence.
Accordingly, on the historic 7 March of 1971, he in front of a million of people at the then Race Course Maidan firmly pronounced, ‘The struggle this time is a struggle for our emancipation, the struggle this time is a struggle for independence’. At the call of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib, country-wide non-cooperation movement began.
Preparation for waging armed struggle also continued. On the fateful night of 25 March of 1971, the Pakistani occupation forces launched a brutal onslaught and committed genocide on the innocent and unarmed Bangalees. At the early hours of 26 March, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib declared independence of Bangladesh. Formal War of Independence started. The first government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh with Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman as the President, Syed Nazrul Islam as the Vice-President and Tajuddin Ahmad as the Prime Minister was sworn-in on 17 April at the historic Mujibnagar and led the Liberation War. The valiant freedom fighters earned ultimate victory on 16 December by defeating Pakistani occupation forces and their local collaborators- Razakar, Al-Badr and Al-Sham. We have gotten our red-green flag.
In just three and a half years of his government, the Father of the Nation rebuilt the war-ravaged country. Destroyed roads, bridges, culverts, railways, ports were rebuilt to revive the economy. In just 10 months, our constitution was drafted on the basis of the spirit of Liberation War under his direction. In 1975, the GDP growth rate exceeded 9%. Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib turned war-ravaged Bangladesh into a least developed country.
While Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib was advancing to build an exploitation-deprivation-free non communal democratic ‘Sonar Bangla’ overcoming all obstacles, the anti-liberation forces brutally killed him along with most of his family members on 15 August 1975. After the assassination of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib, the development and progress of Bangladesh came to a halt. The politics of killing, coup and conspiracy started. The assassins and their accomplices promulgated the ‘Indemnity Ordinance’ to block the trial of this heinous murder in the history.
Getting the public mandate in 1996, Bangladesh Awami League formed the government after 21 years. After assuming the office, we took initiatives to establish Bangladesh as a dignified state in the comity of nations. Through the introduction of social safety-net programs, poor and marginalized people are brought under government allowances. We made the country self-sufficient in food production with special emphasis on agricultural production. The Ganges Water Sharing Treaty was signed with India in 1996. We signed the historic Peace Accord in 1997 with the aim of establishing peace in the Chittagong Hill Tracts. By repealing the ‘Indemnity Ordinance’, we started the trial of Bangabandhu Murder Case.
Forming governments for the three consecutive terms since 2009, Bangladesh Awami League has relentlessly been working for the last 13 years to improve the living standard of the people. We are implementing the unfinished works of the Father of the Nation. Today, Bangladesh is self-reliant in food production. We are now focusing on ensuring nutrition for the people. Our sovereign rights over a vast area in the Bay of Bengal have been established through the peaceful settlement of maritime disputes with Myanmar and India. The implementation of the Bangladesh-India Land Boundary Agreement has put an end to the protracted inhuman life of the enclave people. The nation has become free from stigma by executing the verdict of Bangabandhu murder case. The trial of four national leaders has been accomplished. The trial of war criminals continues and the verdicts are being executed.
We have formulated the Second Perspective Plan for 2021-2041 and are executing the 8th Five-Year Plan. We have started implementation of 100-year “Delta Plan-2100′ for the first time in the world. Today, the benefits of Digital Bangladesh’ have been expanded from urban to remote rural level.
The urban facilities are being delivered to every village. All landless-homeless people are being provided houses. No one of Bangladesh will be left homeless. To keep the economy going offsetting the impacts of Coronavirus, we have so far announced 28 stimulus packages worth Tk 1,31,641 crore. A total of 99.75% people has been brought under electricity coverage. Per capita income increased to 2,554 US$ now from 543 US$ in 2005-06.
We have made incredible progress in every sector of the country. Bangladesh is now a ‘Role Model’ in every field of socio-economic development including agriculture, education, health, communication, information technology, industry, trade and commerce. Bangladesh has received the final approval of the United Nations to graduate from a least developed country to a dignified ‘developing’ nation.
Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib elevated Bangladesh to a ‘least developed country, and we took the motherland to the row of a developing’ state on the auspicious occasion of ‘Mujib Year’ and the Golden Jubilee of our victory.
Everything we have achieved in the last 50 years since our Independence has been attained by the Father of the Nation and the Awami League. I firmly believe that if this trend of development continues, Bangladesh will be established as a hunger-poverty-free and developed-prosperous country by 2041 as dreamt by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib, InshaAllah.
The establishment of the nation-state ‘Bangladesh’ through the victory of the War of Liberation on 16 December 1971 was the greatest achievement of the Bangalee nation. To make this achievement meaningful, we have to know and let people know about the Greatest Hero of Independence Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib and the War of Liberation.
We will convey the spirit of the great Liberation War from generation to generation- let this be our pledge on this auspicious occasion of the Golden Jubilee of our victory.
Joi Bangla, Joi Bangabandhu, May Bangladesh Live Forever.”
President’s message on the occasion of Great Victory Day and National Day
Dhaka 16 December 2021 :
President Md. Abdul Hamid has given the following message on the occasion of the Great Victory Day and National Day :
“December 16th is our great Victory Day. On this day in 1971, we achieved our long-cherished victory after a long struggle and bloodshed war. This year, we are celebrating the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the golden jubilee of Independence in a festive mood, which has added a unique dimension to the Victory Day celebration of Bengalees. On this joyous occassion, I extend my sincere felicitations and warm greetings to my fellow countrymen living at home and abroad.
Today, I recall with profound respect the greatest Bangalee of all time Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. I pay my deep homage to the valiant freedom fighters who made supreme sacrifice in the War of Liberation for the cause of country’s Independence. I remember with gratitude the four national leaders and the people of all walks of life, including the heroic freedom fighters, the organisers and supporters of the Liberation War, foreign friends, war-wounded individuals and members of the martyrs’ families, who directly and indirectly contributed to our victory. The nation recalls their contributions with utmost respect.
Independence is the greatest achievement of the Bengali nation. It enabled us to achieve a sovereign country, independent nationhood, a sacred constitution, a map and a red-green flag. Behind the achievement, there was a prolonged history of deprivation, sanguinary struggle and supreme sacrifice of our people.
The seeds of Independence that was sown in the Language Movement in 1952 subsequently came into being on 26 March in 1971 through the proclamation of Independence by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, overcoming various ups and downs and staging long movement and agitation. The final victory was achieved on 16 December in 1971 through a nine-month long armed war of liberation against Pakistani invading forces under Bangabandhu’s leadership and guidance.
The aims of our independence were to attain political sovereignty as well as people’s economic emancipation. Returning to the newly independent country after being freed from Pakistan’s prison, the Father of the Nation started his journey for achieving economic self-sufficiency by rebuilding economy and infrastructure of the war-torn country, keeping the aims of Independence in mind. He called for an agricultural revolution and launched a movement against corruption, black marketeers, profiteers and looters. But the progress of democracy and development came to a halt after the brutal assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman along with his near and dear ones being committed by a group of anti-liberation forces on August 15, 1975. Subsequently, the autocratic and undemocratic government was emerged.
Overcoming various ups and downs, now a democratic government has been established in the country. With the spirit and values of our Liberation War and Independence, the Government under the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has taken ‘Vision 2021’, ‘Vision 2041’ and hundred-year long ‘Bangladesh Delta Plan 2100’ to materialise the unfinished tasks of Bangabandhu. The objectives of these plans are to attain the targets of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 and to turn Bangladesh into a developed and prosperous country by 2041 respectively. Despite various adversities, sustained economic growth in recent years is continuing due to undertaking manifold public welfare-oriented programmes by the government. Today, Bangladesh is the 41st largest economy in the world. The country will become the 25th largest economy in the world by 2035, according to a UK research organization ‘Center for Economic and Business Research’.
The country is advancing in every socio-economic index, including health, education, women’s empowerment, etc. Bangladesh, in the meantime, has been elevated to a developing country from a least developed country. The construction work of the Padma Bridge, which is being constructed by our own resources, is nearing completion. Besides, some mega projects like Metro Rail, Payra Sea Port, Karnaphulli Multipurpose Tunnel, Elevated Expressway, Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant are being implemented. Bangladesh is now a proud member of the elite satellite club through launching the Bangabandhu Satellite-1 into space. All-out cooperation as well as a positive change of outlook of our people is imperative to take this ongoing development trend forward.
Our foreign policy is being exercised in accordance with the principle of ‘Friendship to all, malice towards none’ as enunciated by the Father of the Nation. Bangladesh believes in world peace and harmony. Bangladesh has set a unique example of humanity in international arena by providing shelter to millions of forcibly displaced and tortured Rohingyas fled from Myanmar. We believe in a peaceful solution of the crisis. Our expatriate Bangladeshis are making a significant contribution to the national economy by sending their hard-earned remittances to the country. The nation acknowledges their contribution with gratitude.
The COVID pandemic has put human civilization to the brink of one of the worst disasters in history. The COVID-19 pandemic has temporarily hampered our development and progress, but could not halt it. Corona infection is now under control in Bangladesh due to timely and far-sighted steps taken by the government and the death rate is close to zero.
The nationwide COVID vaccination program is progressing in full swing. Bangladesh is successfully coping with the Corona situation, due to the 31-point directives and the timely decision given by Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and tireless efforts of all concerned to deal with this unexpected situation. To win the war against Corona virus, I call upon the people to follow health guidelines properly.
We shall have to give institutional shape to democracy in order to deliver the benefits of Independence at people’s doorstep, which we attained through the sacrifice of millions of martyrs. The political parties will have to nurture the culture of mutual respect and of tolerance of others’ opinion. Let us contribute more from our respective position in implementing the spirit and values of war of liberation and take the nation towards the path of development and prosperity. Let our country turn into ‘Sonar Bangla’ (Golden Bengal) as dreamt of by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. It is my expectation on the great Victory Day.
Joi Bangla. Khoda Hafez, May Bangladesh Live Forever.”