The nation observed the Martyred Intellectuals Day on Thursday commemorating the intellectuals who were killed systematically by the Pakistan occupation army and their local collaborators at the fag-end of the country’s Liberation War in 1971.
On this day in 1971, country’s renowned academicians, doctors, engineers, journalists, artists, teachers and other eminent personalities were dragged out of their homes, blindfolded and taken to unknown places and then brutally tortured and slaughtered.
Their bodies were later dumped at Rayerbazar, Mirpur and some other killing fields in the capital.
Sensing an imminent defeat, the Pakistani forces and local collaborators like Al-Badr, Al-Shams and Razakar forces committed the cold-blooded mass murders aiming to annihilate the country's intelligentsia and cripple the emerging Bangladesh intellectually.
Among the martyred intellectuals are Prof Munier Chowdhury, Dr Alim Chowdhury, Prof Muniruzzaman, Dr Fazle Rabbi, Sirajuddin Hossain, Shahidullah Kaiser, Prof GC Dev, JC Guha Thakurta, Prof Santosh Bhattacharya, Mofazzal Haider Chowdhury, journalists Khandaker Abu Taleb, Nizamuddin Ahmed, SA Mannan (Ladu Bhai), ANM Golam Mustafa, Syed Nazmul Haq and Selina Parvin.
President Abdul Hamid paid tributes to the martyred intellectuals placing a wreath at the Martyred Intellectuals’ Mausoleum at Mirpur in the morning.
Prime Minister’s Military Secretary Major General Major Gen Mia Md Jainul Abedin placed a wreath at the monument on behalf Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina who was abroad.
BNP, led by party Chairperson Khaleda Zia, paid homage to the martyred intellectuals at Mirpur Martyred Intellectuals’ Memorial.
Besides, different socio-cultural and political organisations observed the day with various programmes, including seminars, discussions and wreath-laying at Mirpur Martyred Intellectuals Graveyard and Intellectuals Memorial at Rayerbazar.
Awami League hoisted black flags and kept the national and party flags at half-mast at Bangabandhu Bhaban and its offices across the country on the occasion.