The nation celebrates the 43rd Victory Day tomorrow (Monday), paying rich tributes to the three million martyrs for their supreme sacrifice for the country and with a renewed call for executing all the verdicts against war criminals.
On this day in 1971, Pakistani occupation forces surrendered after a nine-month war resulting in a free, independent and sovereign Bangladesh.
The day bears a special significance this year as it is going to be celebrated four days after the execution of war criminal Jamaat leader Abdul Quader Mollah. He was hanged on Thursday night.
The day is a public holiday.
Different political parties, socio-cultural organisations and educational institutions have drawn up elaborate programmes to celebrate the Victory Day.
The day will be heralded with 31 gun salutes. However, no parade will be held this year as law enforcers are currently busy ahead of the national election.
President Abdul Hamid, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia will place wreaths at the National Mausoleum at Savar in the early hours to pay homage to the martyred freedom fighters.
People from all walks of life will also place wreaths at the National Memorial.
The national flag will be hoisted atop all government and private buildings, while the government and semi-government buildings and other public places will be illuminated and roads and islands will be decorated with flags and festoons in all cities of the country on the occasion.
National dailies will bring out supplements. The state-owned and private televisions and radios will broadcast special programmes highlighting the significance of the day.
Special prayers will be offered in mosques, temples, churches, pagodas and other places of worship seeking divine blessings for the peace and progress of the country.
The President will accord a reception to freedom fighters at Bangabhaban in the afternoon.
The destitute children will be allowed to visit the children park in the capital on the day free of cost.
Improved diets will be served in jails, hospitals, orphanages and vagrant homes across the country.
Bangladesh missions abroad will hoist the national flag and organise discussion, cultural function and reception.
The ruling Awami League has chalked out elaborate programmes to mark the day.
National and party flags will be hoisted at the party’s central office at Bangabandhu Avenue at dawn. Awami League leaders and workers will place wreaths at the National Memorial at Savar at the same time.
The ruling party leaders will also pay tributes to Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman by placing wreaths at his portrait at Bangabnadhu Bhaban at Dhanmondi in the city in the morning.
Besides, the party leaders and workers will place wreaths at the graveyard of Bangabandhu at Tungipara in Gopalganj district.
The ruling party will also bring out a victory rally from Suhrawardy Udyan in the afternoon.
The main opposition BNP will celebrate the Victory Day with various programmes across the country.
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia along with her party leaders and activists will place wreaths at the majar of late President and BNP founder Ziaur Rahman at Sher-e-Banglanagar in the capital around 8am.
The party will also hold a discussion meeting at the Jatiya Press Club in the afternoon, marking the day.
Meanwhile, President Abdul Hamid, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia have issued separate messages on the occasion.
In his message, the President urged all irrespective of party affiliation and opinion to work together with a view to reaching the benefit of the independence to the doorsteps of people.
The Prime Minister in her message said, “We’re determined to build a hunger – and poverty-free, prosperous and peaceful Golden Bangladesh by 2021 as dreamt by the Father of the Nation.”
She also underscored the need for maintaining the continuity of the development and democracy to achieve the target.
The opposition leader, in her message, said, “We must forge a national unity imbued with the spirit of the Liberation War to save our beloved country, its independence and sovereignty from the hands of the evil forces and make the democracy free from danger.”