Dhaka, Mar 25: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday called upon all for making collective efforts to realise international recognition of the massacre during the Liberation War in 1971 as genocide.“Today is the March 25, the day when Pakistani occupation forces launched genocide on unarmed Bangalees and killed millions of people in 1971. We would have to make stride to achieve international recognition of the genocide during the Liberation War of 1971,” she said while addressing at an independence award-giving ceremony in Bangabandhu International Conference Center here, BSS reported.
The government has already taken some initiatives to this respect, she mentioned.
The premier asked all to work in unison to reach the benefits of the hard-earned independence to every home being imbued with the spirit of the Liberation War and ideals of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
“Whenever, we come to power, we try to develop the socio-economic sector of the country at the quickest possible time to make Bangladesh a developed one free from hunger and poverty as dreamt by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman,” she also said.
Today’s development in Bangladesh with graduation to a middle income country from least development one becomes possible for Awami League government’s relentless efforts of the last decade, she said, adding “We are going to achieve 8 percent GDP (gross domestic product) this year and now the per capita income is $ 1909 which was $ 1751 earlier,”.
Highlighting different initiatives taken by Bangabandhu during his tenure at various sectors including education, economic and social development, she said seven percent growth was achieved in 1975 before assassination of Father of the Nation along with most of his family members.
Bangabandhu got only three and half a years after achieving the independence in 1971, but rebuilt the war-ravaged country and gave it a shape in such a short period, she said, adding that if Bangabandhu was alive, the country could have been developed between five to 10 years after the independence.
But, the anti-liberation forces and their international cliques had assassinated Father of the Nation as a part of their conspiracy as they had realised that Bangladesh would soon achieve economic emancipation under his visionary leadership, she mentioned.
The economic development was stopped with Bangabandhu’s assassination on August 15 in 1975, she said.
“We assumed power after 21 years and started building Bangladesh as a developed country following Bangabandhu’s footsteps and ideals,” she said.
The premier handed over ‘Swadhinata Purashkar-2019’to 13 eminent persons and an organisation in recognition of their glorious and outstanding contribution to their respective fields at the function organized by the Cabinet Division.
The recipients are – martyred intellectual Mufazzal Haider Chowdhury (posthumous), martyred ATM Zafar Alam (posthumous), AKM Mozammel Haque, Engineer Mosharraf Hossain, Dr Kazi Misbahun Nahar, Abdul Khalek (posthumous), Professor Mohammad Khaled (posthumous) and Barrister Shawkat Ali Khan (posthumous) in independence and Liberation War, Brigadier General Dr Nurun Nahar Fatema Begum in medical science, Dr Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad in social service, Murtaza Bashir in culture, Hasan Azizul Haque in literature, Professor Dr Hasina Khan in research and training and Bangladesh Institute of Nuclear Agriculture (BINA) in science and technology.
Cabinet Secretary Mohammad Shafiul Alam conducted the function and read out the citations at the program.
Chief Justice, cabinet members, PM’s advisors, lawmakers, chiefs of the three services, foreign diplomats, freedom fighters, and high civil and military officials were present on the occasion.
Each award recipient was given a medal weighing 50 grams of gold of 18 karat, Tk 3 lakh and a citation.
Greeting the recipients of independence award, the premier said the people, who are working for the welfare of the country with their limited resources even staying in villages, should be found out to recognize their contributions.
She said “We had to face a lot of impediments to graduate Bangladesh into middle income country by carrying out huge development works in every sector.”
Referring to corruption allegation regarding construction of Padma Bridge, she said the World Bank had failed to prove graft charges in this regard.
“Honesty is the main sources of the power. We could face it as we have honesty,” she continued.
Sheikh Hasina, the eldest daughter of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, added, “Insha Allah, we would be able to build Bangladesh as a hunger and poverty free country. And none could suppress Bangladesh as it is progressing ahead.”
She mentioned that Bangladesh would successfully celebrate the birth centenary of Father of the Nation in 2020 and golden jubilee of the independence in 2021.
The government had already declared 2020-2021 as ‘Mujib Barsha’, she said.
Speaking on formation of BAKSAL (Bangladesh Krishak Sramik Awami League), she said Bangabandhu had brought all the political parties under a platform to make a national consensus to rebuild a war-ravaged country and work for ensuring the overall development of the country.