From the Editor-in-Chief: Our struggle back then, our goal today

Enayetullah Khan
Thursday, December 15th, 2016
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As we observe the 45th anniversary of our victory over the occupation forces of Pakistan in December 1971, we recall the sacrifices made in the defence of the land by three million martyrs. We also recall the horror which as many as two hundred thousand Bengali women went through at the hands of the occupation forces and their local collaborators. We remember only too well the lives destroyed by the enemy during the nine months of the War of Liberation and we have not forgotten the pillage and plunder resorted to by the hordes determined to put an end to our nationalistic struggle and our cultural heritage. And of course this morning we pay rich and profound tributes to the valiant young men and women of the Mukti Bahini who, inspired by the call to freedom, marched off to the battlefields in order to free the country from the grip of sinister, medieval forces.


Today we recall the inspiring leadership of the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, in our struggle for liberty and self-expression. It was his dream, indeed his perception of our need for national self-assertion which gave us the courage to go to war for our rights. Today we remember the momentous struggle, an essential part of wartime strategy, waged by the national leadership in Mujibnagar by such seasoned political leaders as Syed Nazrul Islam, Tajuddin Ahmad, M. Mansoor Ali and AHM Kamruzzaman.


It is a joy to be alive today, but we cannot forget that the freedom we enjoy today is the fruit of the sacrifices of millions of our people back in 1971. The war this nation fought forty five years ago was aimed at achieving a paramount goal — that of a democratic order based on liberal secular principles and equality of all citizens. In the course of the last four decades and a half, those principles have often been rudely interrupted by extra-constitutional forces and also by elements uncomfortable with thoughts of a non-communal structure of the state. It is our good fortunate that in the last few years, we as a nation have resolutely been doing everything to restore to ourselves and ensure for the generations that will come after ours the moral and political objectives that were the compelling reasons for us to go to war.


In a larger sense, the struggle is not over yet. It is only when we can ensure security of food, of education, of shelter, of gainful employment, indeed of a life free from worry and fear for every citizen that we will know we have reached the peaks.


Here’s wishing everyone Joi Bangla!

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