Of what has been, of what may yet be
A certain rebirth of feeling, a sure reawakening of thoughts, indeed a reassertion of the old spirit are what manifest themselves as we observe Ekushey February every year. In this season of memories, there is that rekindling in the soul of the beginnings of a struggle that was to carry the Bengali nation forward to that ultimate struggle, our epic war of national liberation in 1971.
Indeed, the tragic events which occurred on February 21, 1952 were to be the harbinger of all the movements that were subsequently to reshape our destiny and propel us onward to a reinvention of ourselves as a people. In a sense, therefore, Ekushey is much more than an observance of tragedy or a remembrance of grief. It is, against the background of the evolution we as a people have gone through over the nearly six decades since the shootings of 1952, a celebration of an ethos. We recall the sacrifices of the valiant sons of the soul in that long-ago year. Unbeknownst to us, the martyrs of 1952 were to be but the first group of Bengalis in a long, unending procession of men and women ready and willing to give up their lives in the cause of the nation's future in order for all of us to live and build on the theme of what it meant to be Bengalis in the modern world.
In this observance as well as celebration of the spirit of Ekushey, we bring to our readers a diversity of thoughts relating to the heritage we uphold and the promises that yet remain unrealised. The self-esteem of a nation is often dependent on the degree of self-assessment it can bring into an attempt to understand itself. Such self-assessment is what courses through these pages here.