Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Saturday urged all to stay alert so that the country must not plunge into the post-1975 dark era.
“We must not plunge into danger …we all must remain alert so that we don’t step into the post-1975 dark era,” she said.
The prime minister was addressing a discussion at the auditorium of Krishibid Institution, Bangladesh here in the afternoon.
Bangladesh Awami League organised the discussion on the occasion of Amar Ekushey and the International Mother Language Day.
Sheikh Hasina, also the president of the ruling Awami League, said there is a section of people living in Bangladesh inheriting Pakistani souls. “We have to save the people of Bangladesh from such elements….this is my request to people,” she said.
The prime minister mentioned that it was very regretful that a political party had made the convicted war criminals ministers and put the national flag earned through blood in their hands.
“The nation will never forgive those culprits…the people of the country have to remain vigil regarding those who honour those culprits who raped our mothers and sisters, got involved in genocide, arson attacks and looting…the nation must not forgive those culprits,” Hasina said.
She said the use of the mother tongue has to be ensured at all levels of life.
Talking about the writing of court verdicts, the prime minister said those in the lower court are written in Bangla whereas the higher courts are still using English. “We hope the verdicts in the higher courts will be in Bengali in the future. As it has been a matter of long practice, it’s not possible to change it overnight,” she said.
She said due to the delivery of verdicts in English, the common people are facing serious problems and they have to depend on their lawyers to understand those.
Hasina sharply criticised the recent trend of uttering Bangla words in an English accent, saying, “I don’t know why this sort of pronunciation has started. This is very much unfortunate.”
The prime minister, however, said she is not against the learning of other languages. “I welcome the learning of several other languages.”
Hasina put emphasis on the learning of second language to grab jobs at home and abroad and earn money online.
“But we’ve to practise our language for which we’d given our blood. This is our mother tongue. We’ve to practise this language. We’ve to learn this from our families,” she said.
The Awami League president urged the party leaders and workers to uphold the ideology with which the country was liberated and devote themselves to building Bangladesh as a hunger -and poverty -free Sonar Bangla as dreamt by Bangabandhu.
She also highlighted the history of the Language Movement and said the pride of immortal Ekushey now resounds in the hearts of the people of 193 countries transcending the boundary of Bangladesh.
The prime minister paid tributes to Bangabandhu and recalled his role in establishing Bangla as the state language of Bangladesh.
She also remembered the contributions of Bangladesh Awami League to all movements — from the Language Movement to the Liberation War.
AL presidium members Begum Matia Chowdhury, Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim, Dr Abdur Razzaque and Abdul Matin Khasru, Prof Emeritus Rafiqul Islam and former Bangla Academy director general Prof Dr Syed Anwar Hossain took part in the discussion.
AL Publicity and Publication Secretary Dr Hasan Mahmud conducted the function.
Earlier, a one-minute silence was observed as a mark of profound respect to the memory of language heroes who laid down their lives on February 21 in 1952 for establishing Bangla as the state language.