The 10-day nationwide celebration marking the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the golden jubilee of the country’s Independence concluded on Friday (March 26, 2021).
Greetings poured in for the people and government of Bangladesh on the occasion of the nationwide celebration of the country’s historic milestones in the Mujib Year.
Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, five heads of the state or government were physically present in the 10-day programme held with the theme ‘Mujib Eternal’ from March 17 to 26.
The celebration concluded with a cultural presentation and fireworks at the National Parade Square in the capital at 8:35pm on Friday.
President Abdul Hamid as the chief guest and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the guest of honour were present at the concluding ceremony chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
On the final day, the video messages of UN Secretary General António Guterres and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson were screened, while congratulatory messages from Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, Russian President Vladimir Putin, USA President Joe Biden and Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan were read out by the heads of their respective diplomatic missions stationed in Dhaka.
At the event, Narendra Modi was honoured with ‘Eternal Mujib Memento’. Bangabandhu’s youngest daughter Sheikh Rehana handed over the memento to him.
Later, Modi and Hasina witnessed the cultural presentation and fireworks.
On March 17, President of Maldives Ibrahim Mohamed Solih joined the inaugural ceremony of the celebration as the guest of honour.
Besides, Prime Minister of Sri Lanka Mahinda Rajapaksa (March 19), President of Nepal Bidya Devi Bhandari (March 22) and Prime Minister of Bhutan Lotay Tshering (March 24) were physically present as the guests of honour in the celebration.
A large number of world leaders and noted dignitaries including Chinese President Xi Jinping, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, South Korean Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun, Pope Francis II, French Senator Madame Jacqueline Deromedi, OIC Secretary General Yousef Al Othaimeen, Director General of UNESCO Audrey Azule and President of the Indian Congress Sonia Gandhi greeted the people and the government of Bangladesh by sending video messages for the celebration.
Many others, including the presidents of United States, China, Russia, France, Germany, Italy, Austria, Cuba, Czech Republic, Estonia, Ethiopia, Egypt, European Council, Georgia, Poland, Singapore, Thailand, Swiss Federation, Philippines, Palestine, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine, Vietnam, Lao PDR, Mongolia and Zambia, and prime ministers of Algeria, Bulgaria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Cuba, China, Czech Republic, Greece, Iraq, Kosovo, Montenegro, Monaco, Malaysia, Qatar, Serbia, Thailand, Vietnam, UAE Vice-President, and Chairman of State Administrative Council of Myanmar extended written greetings.
Also, the Queen of Britain, the Emperor of Japan, the King of Belgium, Malaysia, Spain, Sweden and Morocco, the Sultan of Brunei, the Emir of Qatar and many others sent written congratulatory messages.
Sheikh Hasina, on behalf of the People and the Government of Bangladesh and herself, extended her sincere gratitude to all the dignitaries who attended the celebration or extended greetings on the occasion.
During the celebration, the India government on March 22 conferred the prestigious ‘Gandhi Peace Prize-2020’ on Bangabandhu posthumously, recognising his immense and unparalleled contribution in inspiring the liberation of Bangladesh, bringing stability to a nation born out of strife, laying the foundation for the close and fraternal relations between India and Bangladesh, and promoting peace and non-violence in the India subcontinent.
At the closing ceremony of the celebration, Sheikh Rehana accompanied by Sheikh Hasina received the ‘Gandhi Peace Prize-2020’ from Narendra Modi.