Japan on Thursday completed 75 years since it first suffered the world's first atomic bomb attack on the city of Hiroshima, followed three days later by the second and last on Nagasaki, leading to the end of world war II at the cost of over 2,00,000 lives and unimaginable loss of property. On August 6, 1945, a US B-29 warplane, named Enola Gay, unleashed a bomb nicknamed "Little Boy" on Japan's southwestern city of Hiroshima, killing 140,000, and leaving lakhs injured, many of whom died in coming years. Temperatures near the blast reached an estimated 7,000 degrees Celsius (12,600 Fahrenheit), which caused fatal burns within a radius of about three kilometres. On August 9, the United States dropped another bomb, named "Fat Man", on the city of Nagasaki, killing more than 75,000 people. The historic pictures of the tragic incident show that huge blast led to a mushroom cloud, which grew as high as 9,000 metres (30,000 feet). Japan surrendered six days later, ending World War Two.
Liberation War Museum and theatre troupe Swapnadal observed Hiroshima Day organising online events on August 6 due to the COVID-19 crisis.
Liberation War Museum and Japan-based Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum prepared an online exhibition which was uploaded on the YouTube channel of LWM.
The concept and lay-out of the exhibition, titled ‘Commemorating Hiroshima At the Time of Pandemic From Disaster to a New Future’, was developed by Liberation War Museum trustee Mofidul Hoque and conservator and archivist of the museum Amena Khatun.
It features photographs and artworks by the survivors portraying the appalling aftermaths of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The photographs give viewers a glimpse into the sufferings of the survivors, destroyed cities, rebuilding process and others.
The US air force dropped atomic bombs over Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on August 6 and August 9 in 1945 respectively. The two bombings killed thousands, most of whom were civilians.
The exhibition also includes photographs depicting various programmes organised in the previous years by the Liberation War Museum marking the day along with photographs of local children observing this year’s Hiroshima Day by making paper cranes and hanging those at their homes.
‘Every year we organise various programmes marking the Hiroshima Day, but due to COVID-19 situation we had to arrange virtual exhibition this year. I urge all to view the online exhibition,’ Rafiqul Islam, Liberation War Museum programme manager.
Theatre Troupe Swapnadal streamed its acclaimed play titled ‘Tringsha Shatabdee’ online on its Facebook page. Besides, the troupe arranged an online discussion marking the day.
‘Tringsha Shatabdee’ is an adaptation of Indian playwright Badal Sarkar’s work with the same title. The play has been adapted and directed by Zahid Repon, also the chief secretary of the troupe.
The play mainly portrays genocides those took place at different times in the world through interrogations of some historical characters like Einstein (who developed the theory of making atom bomb), Major Ferebee (the pilot of the aircraft that dropped the bomb on Hiroshima), and Major Claude Eatherly (who carried the nuclear bomb to Nagasaki and later became insane on his realisation of the crime).
Swapnadal artistes Juayna Shabnam, Fazle Rabbi Shukorno, Samad Bhuiyan, Shishir Shikdar, Shakhawat Shyamol, Zahid Repon, Sumya Akter and others acted in the play.
‘We have already staged 113 shows of the play at both home and aboard. The last show of the play was staged in India at Ganaga Jamuna Theatre Festival this year. We streamed the play online due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The video was recorded in “Festival/Tokyo 2018” in Japan. The play aims at spreading the message of peace and urges countries not to wage war against each other,’ Zahid Repon.
Following the online show of the play, a live Facebook discussion titled ‘Hiroshima, Tringsha Shatabdee and World Peace’ was held.
Japanese ambassador to Bangladesh Ito Naoki, International Theatre Institute honorary president Ramendu Majumdar, head of Bangla department at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies Professor Kyoko Niwa and others participated in the discussion, moderated by Zahid Repon.