The truth always comes out in the end, no matter how hard anyone tries to hide or prevent it. Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s name had been once almost banned in the country’s newspapers, radio station and television channel for over two decades, but now his name has spread throughout the world again, overcoming barriers of border.
The world recognises his contributions and takes inspiration from his life and ideals, thanks to the initiatives taken by various international organisations and Bangladesh embassies, high commissions and missions in different countries.They have organised various programmes to observe ‘Mujib Year’ on the occasion of the birth centenary of Bangabandhu in a befitting manner
involving the government and prominent institutions of the respective countries.
Experts have opined that this is crucial for branding Bangladesh on the global stage when the country has stepped into a new journey qualifying to graduate into a developing nation from a Least Developed Country (LDC).
Talking to the Daily Sun, Professor of International Relations at Dhaka University Dr Delwar Hossain said, “Bangabandhu’s name has spread around the world. And this has presented us as a self-respecting nation and recalled the world about our long struggle for independence.”
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) decided to launch “UNESCO-Bangladesh Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman International Prize in the field of the Creative Economy” at its 210th session which was held virtually from December 2-11 last year.
The award, for the first time, will be given during UNESCO’s 41st general meeting in November this year. This is the first time any UN agency has introduced an international prize in the name of any Bangladeshi citizen.Earlier, in its 40th general meeting in 2019, the UNESCO enlisted the birth centenary of Bangabandhu in its anniversary programme.
The UNESCO, in October 2017, also recognised Bangabandhu’s historic March 7 speech and included it in the Memory of the World International Register, a list of world’s important documentary heritage maintained by the organisation.
After Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Boulevard in Ankara of Turkey, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Sarani in Kolkata of India, Sheikh Mujib Way in Chicago of the USA and Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Road in New Delhi of India, several more roads in different countries have been named after Bangabandhu recently.
A street was named after Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, in Port Louis, the capital of Mauritius, an Indian Ocean island nation, in December last year.
Besides this, the Palestine authorities named a road in Hebron after Bangabandhu in February this year.
With a motto “Mujib Year’s Diplomacy, Friendship and Prosperity”, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) has arranged various programmes to uphold the illustrious life and great legacy and ideals of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, which have been implemented through the Bangladesh embassies, high commissions and missions in different countries in six continents.
A series of discussions, seminars, webinars, symposiums, conferences, art exhibitions, cultural programmes, and competitions organised by them on different occasions throughout the year helped the world know more about Bangabandhu.
Proud Bangladeshi expatriates in different countries attended these events with spontaneity and enthusiasm which attracted numerous foreigners as well.
Bangladesh embassies in most of the countries have set up ‘Bangabandhu Corner’ in their chancery buildings where photos of Bangabandhu with world leaders and books on him are displayed.
Books written by Bangabandhu have been translated into many languages so that the people of other countries can be acquainted with his life and philosophy.
Documentaries on the life and achievements of Bangabandhu have also been screened.
The MOFA and some embassies, along with a number of reputed international institutions, organised a series of lectures on Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman where former Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith, Prime Minister’s International Affairs Adviser Dr Gowher Rizvi, Nobel Laureate economist Professor Amartya Sen, eminent economist Professor Rehman Sobhan and former Secretary General of United Nations Ban Ki-moon delivered their speech.
Former Ambassador Humayun Kabir believes that these initiatives taken to celebrate the birth centenary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman are surely praiseworthy but he wants to see continuation of the programmes instead of limiting these within the celebration of one year.
“Apart from the celebrations in and outside the country, we have to develop Bangladesh with the democratic ideals and visions for which Bangabandhu fought throughout his life. If we can do it, this would be the best way to pay respect to him,” he said.