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Mujibnagar: A Walk through the Memory of Struggle for Independence

14-09-2022 Wednesday 12:00 GMT+06:00
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Mujibnagar Memorial
Shahary Kabir Shahary Kabir

 

_Since 1971, Mujibnagar (formerly known as Baidyanathtala and Bhobarpara) is a glorious memory for Bangladeshis. One of the historical significance of the memorial is that the first government (provisional) of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, which was in exile in Kolkata, West Bengal, India, was sworn in at Mujibnagar on 17 April 1971 in the early stages of the Bangladeshi Liberation War.

 

Mujibnagar is a town in Mujibnagar Upazila in Meherpur District of Khulna Division, Bangladesh, the place is named after Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the founder of the Bangladesh. Later, a monument and tourist complex were built there to commemorate the place of oath taking.

 

The Mujibnagar government was formed with Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman as the President, Syed Nazul Islam as Acting President and Tajuddin Ahmad as the Prime Minister. The post-liberation government took an initiative to preserve the bright memory of the nation.

 

During the first Mujibnagar Day celebration on April 17, 1974, Acting President Syed Nazrul Islam officially inaugurated the project, which is one of Mujibnagar's most memorable memories.

Later, step by step, an administrative department, a restroom, a resource centre, a Mujibnagar monument, and Mujibnagar Ambagan, Mujibnagar Monumental Complex, Mujibnagar Complex museum, auditorium, mosque and additional service centers were established throughout the area.

 

Mujibnagar Memorial: Located in the western part of Mujibnagar, it was designed by architect Tanveer Naqeeb. The 23 triangular shaped concrete pillars of the monument reflect the history of the liberation war and the history of Bengali sacrifice. The altar symbolizes the beginning and rising sun of twenty-three years of Pakistani rule and the small struggles of Bengalis during these years.

 

Its circular altar is divided into three parts, symbolizing the three million martyrs of the Liberation War. It is 3.6 feet high respectively from the surface and is covered with numerous pebble stones symbolizing the united struggle of the freedom fighters.

 

Mujibnagar Memorial

Mujibnagar Mango Groove: This mango groove was chosen for the swearing ceremony due to its historical significance and the geographical location of Baidyanathala, surrounded by vast green natural areas.

 

The area was rich in mango trees and close to the border of India, it was difficult for the Pakistan Army to attack the place by land or air, and it was easy to take shelter if attacked. Mujibnagar Ambagan is now recognized as a tourist spot, a small fair is also held here at the local level. Locals sell various handicrafts, jewelry, food, toys etc. there.

 

Both Palashi and Baidyanathtala are significant in Bengali history, the Mango groove of Palashi reminds of the pain of losing Bengali independence to the British. At the time of partition in 1947, Bangladesh was merged with Pakistan (then West Pakistan) under the name East Pakistan. This division was mainly due to religious similarities and the then Pakistani government took the initiative to recognize Bengalis as Pakistanis as well.

 

Later, the small movements created in response to the various demands of the Bengalis gradually grew, one of which was the language movement of 1952. And the specialty of Baidyanathala mango groove is that the oath was taken here to bring back the lost freedom.

Mujibnagar Memorial Complex: This building has some sculptures commemorating the historical events of the Liberation War which have been placed inside. It has a wartime map at its center and a circular path to view it from every angle. The map depicts several bloody battles between freedom fighters and the Pakistani army, the escape of Bengali refugees to India, Bangabandhu's historic 7th March speech and many other events of the time.

 

At the northern entrance, there are some sculptures with symbols of historical events and personalities, such as the formation of the then government, the monument of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the father of the nation, the oppression of the Pakistani army, the sculpture of the Pakistani army signing the surrender letter, 16th December 1971, etc. In the southern part of the map there is a body of water which symbolizes the Bay of Bengal.

 

However, to understand its true significance, one has to know the history of this place and the contribution of the people behind it and play a role in protecting the glorious memory of Bengali liberation and freedom struggle.

 

 

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