The nation is honoring the historic March 7 in Bangladesh, commemorating Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s groundbreaking speech, which was hailed as a declaration of the country’s independence in 1971. The day of Bangabandhu’s rousing address motivated the Bengalees to prepare for the Liberation War. Hence, like every year, Bangladesh observing historic 7 March.
The Pakistan Army launched “Operation Searchlight” against unarmed Bangalee residents, intellectuals, students, politicians, and armed men 18 days later. UNESCO recognized the historic speech as part of the world’s documentary heritage on October 30, 2017.
On March 7, in a historical speech delivered at a massive crowd in the city’s then Ramna Race Course, now known as Sohrawardi Uddan, Bangabandhu urged freedom-loving Bangalees to wage a determined struggle against Pakistani occupation forces.
Bangabandhu asserted unequivocally in a 19-minute extempore speech delivered before millions of people in former East Pakistan at 4.23 p.m. on a historic day, “We spilled our blood…we are ready to shed more blood, the people of the country shall be freed, Inshallah!”
“Ebarer sangram amader muktir sangram, ebarer sangram swadhinatar sangram” – The struggle this time is for our emancipation, the struggle this time is for our independence, continued the great leader and all-time Bangalee.
During his deliberations, he also made a heartfelt plea to the familiar people from all walks of life to prepare for armed battle against tyranny, exploitation, subjection, and deprivation by the Pakistani military junta with whatever they had, turning every house into a fortress.
The people were overwhelmed and imbued with the spirit of Bangabandhu’s unparalleled speech of independence regarded only as compared to the Gettysburg Speech of slain US President Abraham Lincoln.
The entire nation erupted in a deafening chant in response to Bangabandhu’s call: “Bir Bangalee Astra Dharo, Bangladesh Swadhin Karo” – “Brave Bangalees take up arms and free Bangladesh from occupation.”
The fiery speech spurred people from all areas of life to prepare for the war, which began after the Pakistani regime launched the bloodiest genocides in history on the unarmed Bangalees on the black night of March 25. Bangabandhu’s address on March 7 has been hailed as one of the most stirring and inspiring battlefield speeches in the last 2,500 years. The electrifying speech had altered the trajectory of history in the country.
The alluring speech mesmerized and enthralled the entire inhabitants of this land, and they banded together under his skillful and foresighted leadership to heroically battle for the liberation of the motherland from the clutches of the Pakistani occupation forces.
Although people from all walks of life, regardless of political or religious beliefs, were united for the cause and began making all necessary preparations for a bloody war, they waited until the Pakistani occupation forces’ crackdown on the sleeping Bangalees on March 25, dubbed “Operation Searchlight,” on the night of March 25.
Bangabandhu declared independence for the homeland as soon as the Pakistani occupation forces began genocide, directing the people to resist and battle against them until liberation was accomplished vigorously. On the orders of Bangabandhu, the courageous country fought a nine-month liberation struggle and, with the help of friendly Indian forces, liberated Bangladesh from the clutches of the Pakistani occupation forces on December 16, 1971.
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