September 2021 \ News \ SPECIAL COLUMN

The 15th of August is the National Mourning Day of Bangladesh ...

By Muhammad Imran High Commissioner of Bangladesh to India

The 15th of August is the National Mourning Day of Bangladesh. On this day, with a heavy heart, Bangladesh nationals home and abroad remember the greatest Bangalee ever born, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Bangabandhu, which means - Friend of Bengal - a title unanimously conferred on him by the nation recognizing his selfless love for his people and the land.

On this day, we in Bangladesh mourn and recall with profound grief and sorrow, and with a sense of guilt, the brutal assassination of our Father of the Nation - whose international stature, magnanimity, altruism and towering personality made him a legendary leader of the last century.

In the early hours of 15th August 1975, only three and half years after the Independence of newly born Bangladesh, Bangabandhu was gunned down by a group of renegade army officials along with all members of the family present at his residence on that fateful day. In our recorded history, we have seen political personalities from Julius Caesar to Abraham Lincoln to Mahatma Gandhi to become victims of assassinations but probably in very few cases, we have seen such a violent and the senseless murder of an entire household as part of a political killing spree. Along with Bangabandhu, they murdered his wife, three sons (one of them was only a ten-year-old child), two newly-wed brides of the elder sons, his younger brother and several members of the small security team who were there to protect the President of the country. Two more families, related to Bangabandhu were also attacked on that morning by the same conspirators and altogether 18 persons including a pregnant woman became the victim of this senseless carnage on 15 August 1975. Only his daughters Sheikh Hasina (now the Prime Minister of Bangladesh) and Sheikh Rehana survived as they were abroad.

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