President for global voice to protect languages, cultures

21 February, 2021 12:00 AM printer

President Md Abdul Hamid on Saturday laid emphasis on raising global voice for protecting the language and culture of all ethnic groups, reports BSS.

“Many languages in the world are now at the risk of extinction. The extinction of a language means disappearance of a culture, a nation and a civilization from the face of the earth, ” the president said in his message on the eve of the Shaheed Day and International Mother Language Day 2021.

The head of the state extended his warm congratulations and sincere felicitations to the people and ethnic groups of different languages of the world along with Bengali -speaking people.

“It is a unique celebration in protecting mother tongue as well as own culture and heritage,” he said.

Noting that the great Language Movement is a memorable event in “our” national history, the President said, “Today, I remember with profound respect, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who led Sarbodolio Rashtrobhasa Sangram Parishad (All Party State Language Action Committee), formed in 1948 and was imprisoned”.

He recalled all the language activists including the then Member of Gonoparishad (Constituent Assembly) Dhirendranath Dutta, whose farsightedness, boundless sacrifice, courage, organizational skills and instantaneous decision making resulted in the final outcome of the language movement on February 21, 1952 and consequently, the Bengalese achieved their right to the mother tongue.

“I pay deep homage to the language martyrs namely Salam, Barkat, Rafiq, Jabbar, Shafiur and many unknown and unsung language heroes who laid down their lives for the cause of mother tongue Bangla,” Hamid said. Mentioning that the aim of the language movement was to establish the right of “our mother tongue” as well as to protect “our ethnicity”, self-entity and cultural distinction, he said, “Being a source of ceaseless inspiration, Amar Ekushey (Immortal Shaheed Day) inspired and encouraged us to a great extent to achieve the right to self-determination, struggle for freedom and War of Liberation”.

“With the bloodshed passages of Language Movement of February, we achieved the recognition of Bangla as our mother tongue and consequently, we attained our long-cherished independence under the charismatic leadership of the greatest Bangalee of all time, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman,” the head of the state continued.

In fact, embracing martyrdom for the cause of mother tongue is a rare incident in world history, he said, adding February 21 has now been recognized by the United Nations as the ‘International Mother Language Day’ with the spontaneous willingness and sincere endeavour of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina along with the primary efforts of some Bangladeshi expatriates in 1999.

“As the Bangalee nation, it is also a great achievement for us,” Hamid said.

International Mother Language Institute, an institute for the research and preservation of the flourishing and nearly extinct languages of the world, however, has been established in Dhaka in 2001, he said.

Besides, textbooks and teaching methods have also been introduced for the tribes, minor races, ethnic sects and communities in our country with a view to protecting and developing their own languages and culture, the President said.

He added: “At the same time, in the development of the Bengali language for which we have sacrificed our lives, emphasis should be laid on the introduction of pure Bangla at all levels.

I firmly believe that observing the International Mother Language Day will play a positive role in the development and preservation of our own language as well as in building a sustainable future through multilingual education,” he continued.

The spirit of Amar Ekushey is now the incessant source of inspiration for the protection of own languages and culture of peoples of different languages in the world, the head of the state said.

“Imbued with the spirit of Amar Ekushey, let the bond of friendship among multilingual people be strengthened, world’s almost defunct languages be revived and the globe be diversified in respective societies- it is my expectation on Shaheed Day and International Mother Language Day,” Hamid added.