‘We are with you in a stormy dark night’

Tofael Ahmed, Politician, Dhaka
photo: collected

photo: collected

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Today marks the 40th anniversary of the return of Sheikh Hasina, daughter of Bangabandhu, the beloved leader of the people of Bengal. On 17th May 1981, Bangabandhu's daughter returned to her beloved motherland with the pain of losing her relatives, ending her life in exile. The day loved leader returned to independent Bangladesh was not just a natural disaster but it was a widespread social and state disaster. In her homeland plunged in the darkness of dictatorship, she became a beacon light, a pathfinder of light by removing the impermanence of darkness. She has endured 4 long decades of oppression, injustice, imprisonment and oppression, led the Awami League with devotion, honesty and efficiency, ruled the government 4 times and formed the government.

After '75, when the Awami League was going through a critical period, she took the helm of the party at a difficult time. The whole society and state system then fell under the misrule of military dictatorship. She has united the nation and led it to end the dictatorship. At the '81 conference, we handed over the leadership of the party to Bangabandhu's daughter Sheikh Hasina and handed over the party's blood-curdling flag to her. The day she returned to her beloved motherland, the Awami League leaders and workers thought that they had got Bangabandhu back through Sheikh Hasina. On 15 August 1975, Bangabandhu and his family were brutally killed by some misguided traitors of the army. Innocent kid Russell was also killed that day.

If Bangabandhu's two daughters had not been out of the country that day, they would not have been among us. After a long 21 years, in '96, she became the head of government. She has run the state with determination and ability. She started the work of prosecuting the murder of the Father of the Nation by repealing the infamous Indemnity Ordinance and defaming the constitution. The BNP came to power in 2001 and stopped that trial. After winning the 2008 elections, she not only completed the trial of Bangabandhu's assassination, but also the trial of war criminals against humanity. At a time when the whole world is in the grip of the Corona pandemic, the government led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has provided free vaccinations to the people of the country. Even in this crisis, she has built houses for millions of homeless people. This is a gift for the homeless on the birth centenary of the Father of the Nation i.e. Mujib Borsho and the golden jubilee of independence.

We've had a tough time since '75. Despite the various conspiracies of the dictator General Zia, we were able to thwart the nefarious conspiracy of the vested interests by successfully concluding the council session. On the same day, Sheikh Hasina sent a message wishing the overall success of the council session and said, "Go ahead with self-purification." The message was read out by General Secretary Abdur Razzak at the conference. In her message to the councilors, Sheikh Hasina urged the councilors and leaders to implement Bangabandhu's program Sonar Bangla through 'self-criticism and self-purification', forgetting all contradictions. Sheikh Hasina's return to her homeland shook the foundations of the anti-people dictator. Before returning to the country, the 'Sheikh Hasina Resistance Committee' was formed under the direction of the dictator General Zia. We instructed the leaders and workers of Awami League at all levels to be alert and vigilant in this regard.

She entered the land of independent Bangladesh at 4:30 pm on a stormy rainy day on May 17, 1981. Millions of people from across the country gathered at the airport that day to greet her. Millions of people welcomed Sheikh Hasina with the slogan 'Joy Bangla, Joy Bangabandhu' and raised more slogans - 'Welcome to the arrival of Sheikh Hasina; ‘Sheikh Hasina promised you, I will avenge the murder of Mujib; ‘On a stormy dark night, we are with you’; ‘I will not let Bangabandhu’s blood go in vain; "Ideals do not die, murderers are not spared."

Millions of people on both sides of the aisle as Manik Mia Avenue walk down the aisle. A scene that is indescribable. Crying on the stage that day, she said, ‘I am an orphan. I have none. I want to find my lost parents, my brothers, relatives among you. I promise you that I will sacrifice my life for the restoration of democracy in this country. '

She has made commendable contributions to the fight against hunger, peace building, democracy, women's empowerment, good governance, protection of human rights, regional peace, awareness of the challenges of climate change, reduction of women and child mortality through the use of information technology in health. On September 28, 2015, at the 70th General Assembly session of the United Nations, she was awarded the highest environmental award, the Champions of the Earth. She is known around the world as the 'Mother of Humanity', setting a unique example of humanity by sheltering persecuted Rohingya refugees. Award her honorary doctorate degrees from various world renowned universities.

After winning the 2008 elections, Sheikh Hasina signed a border agreement and a demarcation agreement with India. Under her leadership, all the giant mega projects are being implemented in the country. Padma Rail Bridge Connection Project, Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant, Rampal Maitri Super Thermal Power Project, Matarbari Ultra Super Critical Coal Fired Power Project, Maheshkhali LNG Terminal, Sonadia Deep Sea Port, Karnafuli River Underground Train, Payra deep sea port and the initiative to build a railway line from Dohazari to Ghumdhum, all these are groundbreaking works under her leadership. She has revolutionized power generation.

One thing sometimes seems to be that if the flag of Awami League had not been handed over to Sheikh Hasina on that day, the trial of Bangabandhu's assassination and the trial of war criminals against humanity would not have taken place in Bangladesh. Where Begum Khaleda Zia had tarnished the Bengali nation by hoisting the national flag on the vehicles of war criminals, Bangabandhu's daughter Sheikh Hasina has been trying to tarnish the people of Bengal by judging the war criminals. Bangabandhu's political characteristic was that she followed what he believed in; She would not compromise with her once made a decision and would not bow his head even when going to the gallows. Bangabandhu's daughter Sheikh Hasina has also inherited that ideal from the Father of the Nation. She also works by setting goals and remains steadfast in fulfilling those goals. How good it is to think today, by handing over the flag of Bangabandhu's blood-soaked Awami League to Sheikh Hasina on that day, it has been proved that we did the right thing. In the light of Bangabandhu's ideology and the spirit of the great war of liberation, she has been illuminating the progress of development of independent Bangladesh. The day is not far away when Bangladesh under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina will be the hunger-free, poverty-free golden Bengal of the dream of the Father of the Nation.