New Delhi/Dhaka: Addressing Bangladesh’s 50th Independence anniversary at the National Parade Square in Dhaka in the presence of his counterpart Sheikh Hasina on the first day of his two-day visit that began on Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi recalled the immense contribution of the founder of Bangladesh Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the sacrifices made by both the Indian Army and the people of Bangladesh in securing independence from Pakistan.
PM Modi also revealed that he had participated in a “Satyagraha” in India in 1971 as a youth in support of Bangladesh’s struggle for independence and had even courted arrest and gone to jail. He recalled the atrocities and heinous crimes committed by the Pakistani Army in 1971 on the people of Bangladesh and said photographs of these did not let people sleep for days.
Bangladesh is celebrating 50 years of its existence this year and both countries are also celebrating 50 years of establishment of diplomatic relations with each other this year. The Indian armed forces’ victory over Pakistan in the war in December, 1971, had led to the liberation of the erstwhile East Pakistan and the birth of Bangladesh as an Independent nation. The Pakistani Army’s crackdown began in March, 1971, and officially three million people were killed during the nine-month long war. PM Modi’s “historic visit is to celebrate Mujib Borsho- the birth centenary of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman ; 50 years of the establishment of diplomatic ties between India and Bangladesh; and 50 years of Bangladesh’s war of liberation”.