Friday, September 18, 2009

Bangladesh, Language Mivement (contd-5)

The SKRKP with the support of Awami League, decided to commemorate 21 Feb as Shaheed Dibas (Martyr's day). On the first anniversary of protests,people across East Pakistan wore black badges in solidarity with the victims. Most offices, banks,and educational institutions were closed to observe the occasion. Student groups made agreements with police to preserve law and order. More than 1,00,000 (one lac) assembled at a public meeting held at Armanitola in Dhaka, where the the leaders called for immediate release of Maulana bhasani and other political leaders.However west Pakistan Politician Fazlur Rahman aggravated sectional tensions by declaring that any one who wanted Bengali to become an official language would be considered as "enemy of the State". Bengali students and civilians disobeyed the restrictions to celebrate the anniversary of the protests.Demonstrators broke out at the night of 21 Feb 1954 with various halls of the University of Dhakaraising black flags in mourning. Police arrested students and other protesters , who were released later despite refusing to post bail.
United Front in 1954
Political tensions came to a head as the election of Provincial Assembly of East Bengal were held in 1954. The ruling Muslim League denounced the opposition United Front coalition, which led by A.K.Fazlul Huq and the Awami League-wanted greater provincial autonomy. Several united front leaders and activists were arrested. A meeting of parliament's Muslim League members chaired by Prime Minister Muhammad Ali Bogra, resolved to give official recognition to BengaliThis decision was followed a major wave of unrest as other ethnic groups sought the recognition of other regional languages. Proponents of Urdu such as Maulavi Abdul Huq condemned any proposal to to grant official status to Bengali. He held a rally of 1,00,000 people to protest against Muslim League's decision. Consequently, the implementation failed and the United Front won a vast majority of seats in the legislative assembly of , while the representation of the Muslim league was reduced to a historic low.
The United Front Ministry ordered the creation of the Bangla Academy to promote, develop and preserve Bengali Language, literature, and heritage.However, United front rule was temporary, as Governor General Ghulam Muhammad cancelled the government and started ruling under Government on 30 May,1954. United front again formed the Ministry on 6 June 1955 after the Governor 's Regime ended. Though Awami League did not partcipate in this Ministry.
Following the return of the United Front to power, the anniversary on 21 February 1956 was observed for the first time in a peaceful atmosphere. Government supported a major project to construct a new Shaheed Minar. The session of the Constituent Assembly was stopped for five minutes to express condolence for the students slain in the police firing. Major rallies were organised by Bengali leaders and all public offices and business remained closed.

Constructed on 21 Feb 1956