Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday warned everyone to remain careful so that the achievements and successes of the Bangladeshi nationals cannot be tarnished.
“As a nation, Bengali people have earned everything in exchange of huge sacrifice and struggle. We have to hold up these achievements and remain careful so that none can wipe out these achievements,” the premier said while distributing the Ekushey Padak-2017 at Osmani Memorial Hall.
Minister for Cultural Affairs Asaduzzaman Noor presided over the function while it was conducted by Cabinet Secretary M Shafiul Alam. Secretary in Charge of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs Ministry Ibrahim Hossain Khan gave the welcome address.
Cabinet members, PM’s advisors, judges, MPs, foreign diplomats, litterateurs, academics, Ekushey Award laureates of previous years and high civil and military officials attended the function.
Congratulating the Ekushey Padak recipients, the Prime Minster hoped that the award would inspire the future generation to do more great work for the people, who would learn from them and follow their footprint.
A book titled ‘Creation of Bangladesh: Myths Exploded’ written by Junaid Ahmad, published in Pakistan has been handed over to Bangladesh High Commission in Pakistan. The book contains information regarding genocide, number of martyrs, torture of women by the Pakistani army were mentioned.
“Pakistan has been conspiring against Bangladesh recently. They have published a book where they put caption under the pictures of genocide saying that freedom fighters carried out those. This propaganda is not acceptable.” she said.
The Prime Minister said that there is no doubt about the genocide during the Liberation and each family of the country is the victim of the genocide and it was carried out by the Pakistani force.
“Raising question about the genocide and number of the martyrs is very disgraceful,” she said.
The PM made a promise to declare March 25 as the Genocide Day in Bangladesh and pursue to mark the day internationally as occupational Pakistani army on that day in 1971 carried out one of the worst genocides in the history against unarmed people of Bangladesh.
“I think we will have to take March 25 as the Genocide Day and I also think that we will have to try to get international recognition,” she said.
Ekushey Padak, the second highest civilian award of the country in memory of the martyrs of the Bengali Language Movement of 1952, is given every year to individuals and organisations for substantial contribution in various fields including literature, music, education, journalism, poverty reduction, research, and visual arts.
This year seventeen eminent personalities were given the Ekushey Padak in recognition to their outstanding contribution in the fields of language movement, culture, journalism, research, education, science and technology and social welfare.
The award recipients are- Professor Dr Sharifa Khatun (language movement), Sushama Das (music), Julhas Uddin Ahmed (music), Ustad Ajijul Islam (music), Tanvir Mokammel (film), Syed Abdullah Khalid (sculpture), Sara Zaker (acting), Abul Momen (journalism), Syed Akram Hossain (research), Professor Emeritus Alamgir Mohammad Sirajuddin (education), Professor Zamilur Reza Choudhury (science and technology), Professor Dr. Mahmud Hasan (social welfare), poet Omar Ali (posthumously, language and literature), Sukumar Barua (language and literature), Swadesh Roy (journalism), Shamim Ara Nipa (choreography), and Rahmatullah Al Mahmud Selim (music).