March 21, 1971

Bhutto arrived in Dhaka

Staff Correspondent

21 March, 2021 12:00 AM printer

Bhutto arrived in Dhaka

Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Zulfikar Ali Bhutto arrived in Dhaka on March 21 to join the ongoing negotiation with Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and President Yahya Khan, who had already been staying in Dhaka. 

Like previous several days of the month, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman sat with President Yahya Khan on the day.

Before meeting the president for the fifth time at Governor House, Bangabandhu met Lawyer AK Brohi in a short dialogue.

During the meeting Bangabandhu was accompanied by his party general secretary Tajuddin Ahmad.

Earlier, Yahya Khan asked Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Zulfikar Ali Bhutto to come to join the negotiation in Dhaka.

It was clear to the Awami League leaderships that the talks would not bring any fruitful outcome for Bangalees and Bhutto’s presence would make things more complicated, but they continued it as they didn’t want to take the responsibilities of the failure of the dialogue.

On the 20th day of the non-cooperation movement, Dhaka City was riding on a wave of processions.

The agitating people were chanting slogans “Joy Bangla” and “Joy Bangabandhu”.

However, the PPP chairman along with 12 of his advisors, arrived in Dhaka in the evening.

Soon after his arrival, Bhutto met Yahya, who apprised him of the talks he had been taking part with Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman since March 16.

All the educational institutions, government, semi-government and non-government offices remained closed in East Pakistan. Only the banks were open to disburse the salaries of employees.

Demand of the declaration of independence was growing among the mass people in East Pakistan.

On the same day, the president let Awami League know that a draft proclamation had been prepared and a copy of which was made available to the top party men.

But, the Awami League leaders found a few serious loopholes in the draft proclamation and therefore made their suggestions.

They actually wanted that the proclamation should come into force seven days after it was issued or seven days after five new governors for the provinces took the oath of office.