Vol. 4 Num 295 Sun. March 28, 2004  
Front Page

Independence Day celebrated

The nation celebrated the 33rd anniversary of its independence on Friday recalling the supreme sacrifice of millions who laid down their lives to free the motherland from Pakistani occupation and making a fresh vow to materialise their dreams for a truly democratic and prosperous Bangladesh.

A 31-gun salute heralded the day.

President Iajuddin Ahmed and Prime Minister Khaleda Zia laid wreaths at the National Memorial at Savar Friday morning to pay homage to the martyrs of the Liberation War.

A contingent of the armed forces presented a guard of honour during the ceremony. Speaker Jamir Uddin Sircar, former president Abdur Rahman Biswas, freedom fighters, ministers, diplomats, chiefs of the three services and senior civil and military officials were present.

Khaleda Zia along with other party leaders also laid wreaths at the memorial on behalf of the party as chairperson of the ruling BNP.

Leader of the Opposition in parliament and Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina laid wreaths at 7:25am. She was accompanied by AL leaders Abdul Jalil, Abdus Samad Azad, Amir Hossain Amu, Suranjit Sengupta, Abdur Razzak and Sajeda Chowdhury.

Dr Kamal Hossain and Kazi Farooque Ahmed laid wreaths under the banner of Jatiya Oikya Mancha at 9:15am.

Jatiya Party leaders Sheikh Shahidul Islam and Sadek Siddique laid wreaths at 9:00am.

The prime minister also laid wreaths at the mazar of late president Ziaur Rahman. BNP leaders and workers were present.

A combined parade of Bangladesh Army, Air Force, Navy, Bangladesh Rifles, police, National Cadet Corps and freedom fighters was held at the National Parade Square in the morning. President Iajuddin Ahmed reviewed the parade and took salute at the march past.

Army personnel also presented spectacular rope jumping from helicopters while a number of paratroopers carrying flags landed in the middle of the Parade Square.

The state-owned radio and television put up special programmes and newspapers brought out special supplements highlighting the significance of the day.

Special diet was served at hospital, prisons, orphanages and vagrant homes.

The president, prime minister and leader of the opposition gave messages on the eve of the Independence day.

Bangladesh missions abroad also celebrated the day. Bangladesh high commission in UK honoured 15 people for their significant role there during Bangladesh's Liberation War, UNB said.

They are late Justice Abu Sayeed Choudhury, Gous Khan, Abdul Matin, Peter Shore, Shamsur Rahman, Haji Naser Ali, Sheikh Abdul Mannan, Mimbor Ali, Badrul Hossain Talukdar, Sultan Mahmood Sharif, Serajur Rahman, Badrunnessa Pasha, Nikhileswar Chakraborty, ATM Wali Ashraf and Mainuddin Ahmed.

Prime Minister Khaleda Zia along with her cabinet colleagues, left, and Leader of the Opposition Sheikh Hasina flanked by her Awami League colleagues, right, place wreaths at the National Memorial in Savar marking Independence Day on Friday. PHOTO: STAR