Wednesday, March 27, 2013


For little Afra Anan Rafa, the Independence Day marks a special journey. Holding a national flag and sporting a red-green dress, the student of a kindergarten school visited the National Memorial with her father.

From Ataur Rahman

Dhaka, Mar 26 : At least one person was killed and more than 50 others injured today in an event involving observance of Independence Day.

    The death of a BNP supporter.occurred when activists of main opposition BNP and ruling Awami League clashed at Sarishabari Upazila in Jamalpur on Independence Day .

    The violence broke out in the morning over placing wreaths at a local memorial for the independence heroes as the nation was observing the Independence Day, police said.

    Meanwhile unknown miscreants set on fire at least five  vehicles in capital Dhaka on the Independence Day , a day ahead of the BNP-led 18-Party alliance-called 36-hour shutdown across the country. The vehicles set ablze include two bus , two private car and  a taxi cab  at five different locations of the metropolis. The authorities deployed BGB[ Border Guard Bangladesh] in the capital in the evening to ensure law and order following setting fire and damaging of vehicles.

    Bangladesh today honoured and remembered millions of  people who were killed during the nine-month long Liberation War in 1971 by laying wreaths at memorial near the capital and numerous others spread throughout the country. People demanded death penalty to the war criminals and banning Jamaat and Shibir.

    Acting President  Advocate Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina were the first to place wreaths early in the morning at the National  Martyrs Memorial at Savar, northwest of the capital  to honour the heroes who sacrificed their lives for the freedom of Bangladesh in 1971.

    Opposition chief and BNP Chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia also paid her tributes by placing wreaths at the memorial along with the party leaders and activists.

    Members of Muktijoddha Sangsad, foreign diplomats and members of various political parties and socio-cultural organisations then showed their respect by placing wreaths at the memorial. Thousands of people, many carrying green-and-red national flags, thronged the mausoleum as they sang the national anthem.

    People outside the capital went to their local martyrs memorial to show their respects.

    On the day in 1971, people of then East Pakistan began a nine-month struggle to break away from Pakistan where Bengalis had been denied rights and suffered huge exploitation. Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman gave the call for freedom during his historic March 7 speech at the Ramna Maidan.

    A senior leader of Awami League today accused BNP chief of sheltering  Jamaat and war criminals .BNP Chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia is playing a ‘vicious role’ to save the war criminals, Awami League general secretary Syed Ashraful Islam said on Tuesday.  “Khaleda is backing Jamaat-e-Islami in the killing of law enforcers and minorities. She is trying to foil the trial of ’71 war criminals,”   Syed Ashraf  said while talking to journalists after placing wreaths at the National Mausoleum in Savar.

    Opposition BNP however denied such allegations. BNP acting Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul said the BNP was not trying to save the war criminals. Moreover, he said, the party wants to hold trial of the crimes against humanity. “But, it is unfortunate that a lot of confusions have been created over the war crimes tribunals at home and abroad,” Fakhrul said.

    Ganojagaron Mancha at Shahabagh from where youths began movement against the war criminals also celebrated Swadhinata Dibas today by hoisting national flag and holding gano sangreet. The peaceful mass movement that began on February 5 in Shahbagh in the city by youths demanding capital punishment to all war criminals is completing  50 days today.  The organizers of the movement which had on February 21 announced a six point charter of demands that include taking legal steps by the government for banning politics of Jamaat and Shibir by today is likely to announce fresh program later tonight. Media report said organizers of Shahbagh movement is focusing on building up new networks and strengthen old ones and spread the movement upto grassroots to realize their demand.

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