Mujibnagar Day and Its Significance

Dr M Shahinoor Rahman

The ‘Mujibnagar Government’ was instituted on April 17, 1971, when members of Bangladesh’s founded assembly took the constitutionally mandated, logical, and possible step toward realizing their aspiration of becoming an independent country. Mujibnagar Day must be appropriately remembered and addressed so that entrenched interests’ deceptive and dark attempts to distort our history during the Bangladesh liberation struggle, which can be committed to record. People in independent Bangladesh should constantly express gratitude to Bangabandhu and the country’s freedom warriors and primary organizers of the independence war for leading the nation with love, respect, and perseverance during the struggle. In the 1970 general elections, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman led the Awami League to a landslide victory, but the Pakistan government refused to allow him to form a people’s government.

Bangladesh’s first democratically elected administration, the Mujibnagar Government, took office on April 17, 1971. All members of the Constituent Assembly fulfilled their constitutional obligations to the people of Bangladesh on this Day, bringing the country closer to independence. Mujibnagar Day (April 17) is an important date in Bangladesh’s history and the liberation struggle. Following Bangladesh’s proclamation of independence on April 10, the Baidyanathtala mango orchard in Meherpur, a former subdivision under the Kushtia district, became the Mujibnagar government’s headquarters. Hundreds of foreign media gathered on that momentous Day to witness the oath-taking and celebrate the creation of a new nation.

Even though Bangabandhu was not physically there, his ultimate leadership was entirely functional. Syed Nazrul Islam served as interim president in the absence of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Bangladesh’s Finance Minister was M. Mansur Ali, the Home, Relief, and Rehabilitation Minister waa A. H. M. Kamaruzaman, and the Foreign Affairs and Law Minister was Khondakar Mostaq Ahmed(Traitor). General M. A. G. Osmani, a former colonel and Awami League MNA had been designated Commander-in-Chief of Bangladesh’s military forces. Organizing the civil administration and independence warriors, obtaining and training armaments for the latter, securing foreign support for the Independence war through intense diplomatic effort, and assuring quick relief from the dark, cruel, and exhausting days required extraordinary judgment and patriotism.
The Mujibnagar government raised the morale of tens of thousands of independence fighters to subconscious levels through solid communication and sophisticated coordination. Our supreme leader, Bangabandhu’’s deputies seized command of the historic occasion when he could not attend. They extended our country’s military struggle for another eight months. They persisted because they wanted to keep our country’s unity intact, which was a cornerstone of the liberation movement. They battled valiantly against all foes, but most importantly, they maintained the memory of Bangabandhu, our great leader, alive in the people’s minds. The formation of the April 17 government injected a renewed sense of urgency into the war effort. As a result, the people of Bangladesh felt a sense of belonging and understand their country’s place in the international society, even in the face of war’s devastation.

It appeared to many as an official proclamation that the country would be headed by new political leadership through a national independence struggle. Everything that happened on April 17, 1971, in a terrain that would forever change the country’s political history, confirmed Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s position as the country’s paramount leader in the military victory for constitutional legitimacy. Bangabandhu, like his father and grandfather before him, never pushed for revolution or political terrorism as part of his political platform. As a result, he had to warn his friends that if Pakistan’s military machine launched an offensive, they would face a long and grueling battle on the battlefield. Moments before being caught by Pakistani authorities, Bangabandhu declared independence, prompting his supporters to resort to violence. That indicated he had given his supporters instructions on what to do if he was imprisoned.

As the Pakistani army advanced, Bangabandhu sent a message to the Awami League’s top officials, asking them to flee Dhaka quietly. As a result, the choice of this great leader’s trustworthy and skilled colleagues to form a Mujibnagar government was constitutionally sound, rational, and pragmatic. Another element contributed to the establishment of the Mujibnagar government. Without a control mechanism in place, it was easy to envisage guerilla movements springing up all over the country with no central authority to direct them. Because of their lack of legitimacy, such politics are doomed. As a result, the Mujibnagar government’s absence would have only strengthened Bangladesh’s independence cause, much to concern of the Bengali public under military attack.

Acting President Syed Nazrul Islam and Prime Minister Tajuddin Ahmed, together with his colleagues, visited Meherpur in April 1971. Bangladesh’s elected officials had taken it upon themselves to build and realize independent statehood for the country’s population, and their actions were a clear statement of intent. The rest of the world had no choice but to accept it. Because the campaign leaders achieved widespread backing, it was impossible to dismiss the beginning of the nation’s liberation struggle as an insurgency or separatist movement. Furthermore, the military’s blunder (swooping with bluster on Bengali political ambitions) aided the cause. There were flights to India available. The interim government’s efforts to overthrow the regime were supported by atrocities against women and unarmed citizens. The world community understood the significance and legality of the Bengali struggle by the tens of millions of Bengalis who migrated to India between March and December 1971. It aided the Mujibnagar government in persuading the rest of the world that only an independent Bangladesh was a feasible option. This was Bangladesh’s interim administration’s mission, which was significantly supported by the momentum generated allegiance declarations made by Bengali diplomats in Pakistani embassies across the world, which helped sway international opinion in Bangladesh’s favor.

Mujibnagar government’s success in mobilizing world opinion behind the Mujibnagar government’s goals was aided by Justice Abu Sayeed Chowdhury, an internationally recognized personality. Acting President Syed Nazrul Islam, Prime Minister Tajuddin Ahmed, and other exiled Mujibnagar government leaders were acclaimed for their speeches and announcements during the formal oath-taking ceremony and related activities. The exiled government’s guiding concepts were all democratic, and they were founded on universal human rights principles and other internationally recognized standards and treaties. Finally, the Mujibnagar government marked the beginning of a new nation based on democratic, nationalist, secular, and socialist values. Bangabandhu provided the Bengali Nation with a response to the current demand that outsmarted the current leadership, and Bengali-speaking peoples from all around the region rallied around him. According to Dr. Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury BB, the Sub-Divisional Officer (SDO) of the former Meherpur Sub-Division in the Kushtia district, who played a crucial part in the celebration planning, Mujibnagar was a “Milestone in our National History.”

He said it gave the national liberation movement “life and credibility” in Bangladesh and around the world. “I am convinced that future generations will go back to the beginnings of history to find the truth. “The truth shall triumph,” he said, emphasizing his firm belief in the recent trend of misrepresenting the history of our liberation war. On that momentous Day, Mr. Mahbubuddin Ahmed, BB, in charge of the Mujibnagar Cabinet members’ guard of honor, felt the same way. Mr. Mahbub, the Jhenaidah Sub-Division Police Office (SDPO) at the time, was critical of a recent attempt by a segment of our so-called elite to distort the history of our liberation movement. The preservation and proper execution of the spirit of our liberation struggle against the intentions of a segment of our society seeking to reinstate so-called religious nationalism necessitates an equal level of unwavering loyalty, selfless sacrifice, and a strong sense of patriotism. Reaffirming one’s commitment and working together, like in 1971, is the fundamental imperative of the hour. Mujibnagar’s government, replete with genuine political and diplomatic understanding, made a concerted effort to gain foreign support. As a result, the battle was meticulously planned and executed; at the same time, everyone worldwide became vociferous in their support for Bangladesh’s freedom, so indirectly participating in the liberation war.
The actions taken by the Mujibnagar government were vital in their final success over the Pakistani army’s military power. Bangladesh’s independence struggle won thanks to the Mujibnagar government’s efforts quickly. Since taking her office, Honourable Prime Minister Jononetri Sheikh Hasina has worked relenlessly to build an autonomous, joyous, thriving, and self-sustaining Bangladesh. Mujibnagar Day, I feel, will continue to represent Bangladesh’s togetherness, solidarity, and independence, especially because of the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s tireless efforts to the making of our Independent Bangladesh.

Joy Bangla Joy Bangabandhu

(The author is an academic, writer, researcher, Folklorist, Professor English and the former Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Islamic University, Kushtia, Bangladesh)

Related posts

Leave a Comment