Bangladesh Assistant High Commission in Agartala on Sunday observed ‘Genocide Day’ marking the atrocities and massacres committed by the Pakistani military on civilian Bengalis on the ‘black day’ of March 25 in 1971.
Along with various local socio-cultural groups, a few from Dhaka also took part in a candle protest held in front of the Rabindra Satabarshiki Bhavan here to condemn the killing of innocent citizens and intellectuals across in the then East Pakistan by Pakistani troops.
They also paid homage to Bangladesh’s Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman under whose leadership the Bengalis in the then East Pakistan fought nine months of liberation war that culminated in creation of Bangaldesh as an independent nation in 1971.
According to an estimate during the nine months liberation war the Pakistani military killed three million civilians making it one of the world’s worst genocide.
In his speech Md Sekhawat Hossain, Assistant High Commissioner discussed the horror of the night during which the Pakistani troops, armed with sophisticated weapons, cracked down in Dhaka and several other cities in a campaign code named: ‘Operation Searchlight’.
He urged the United Nations and the international community to come forward to declare March 25 as Genocide Day to build public awareness across the world about such atrocities against humanity.
Messages from President Md. Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hassina were also read out.
Meantime, Partha Pratim Majumder a singer from Dhaka who also took part in the protest said, “Today we are recalling thousand of freedom fighters whose name we do not know and also all those innocent unarmed Bengalis who were barbarically killed by the Pakistani soldiers. In that incident, several people were injured and many mothers and sisters raped. We are both proud and sad for this day, but till date they have not expressed any regret for this genocide and so we are demanding that the Pakistani government as per the international law and Geneva Convention officially express their apology to the Bangladesh government. Through the media, we are demanding this and also recalling the effort of Sheikh Mujibur Rehaman who united the Bengalis for a cause and with India’s help we fought for a cause together. We also thank India and you all with the hope that you shall be by the side of the Bengali people.”
The gathering also observed a one-minute silence paying tributes to the victims of the genocide.