DHAKA: The nation is observing the Martyred Intellectuals’ Day on Saturday (December 14) commemorating the systematic killing of the acclaimed academics and professionals like physicians, engineers and journalists on December 14, 1971.
Though the Pakistani army and their Bengali-speaking collaborators killed a number of intelligentsia throughout the nine-month long Liberation War, Al-Badr and Al-Shams forces led a systematic killing just two days ahead of the final victory.
The nation, however, came to know about the loss only after surrender by the Pakistani troops on December 16, 1971.
Those who were killed on December 14, 1971 included Dr Alim Chowdhury and Dr Fazle Rabbi, journalists Shahidullah Kaisar, Sirajudddin Hossain, Nizamuddin Ahmed, S A Mannan and Selina Parveen and litterateur Munir Chowdhury.
Most of the December 14 victims were picked up from their houses blindfolded and killed between December 10 and 14 in 1971.
Their bodies were later found at Rayerbazar, Mirpur and some other killing fields in the capital.
A memorial has been erected at Mirpur in Dhaka in memory of the martyred intellectuals.
President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina paid tributes to the martyred intellectuals placing wreaths at the Martyred Intellectuals' Mausoleum at Mirpur on Saturday morning.
Earlier President and Prime Minister issued separate messages in this regard.
President Hamid, in his message, prayed for the departed souls of the martyrs and hoped that the country will fulfill their dreams.
Prime Minister Hasina, in her message, said it was a black day in the country’s history. She said the nation will remember their sacrifices with deep respect.
Family members of the martyred and freedom fighters placed wreaths there before people from all walks of life pay tributes at the memorial in Mirpur and Rayerbazar Killing Ground in Mohammadpur.
Awami League, other political parties, and cultural and social organizations have chalked out various programs to commemorate the day.
BDST: 1235 HRS, DEC 14, 2019