Expat’s rally in NY demanding Int’l recognition of Bangladesh genocide
Noman Sabit: On the night of March 25, 1971, Pakistani forces killed three million Bengalis along with 50,000 people and tortured about four hundred thousand women on the soil of Bangladesh. But there is no international recognition of this genocide yet. Bangladeshis living in the United States organized a rally at Time Square in New York, the capital of the world, to demand recognition of March 25 as International Genocide Day at the United Nations. The rally was held on Friday (September 30) afternoon local time.
In the session of the United Nations Human Rights Council held in July 2022, agenda number 3 on the agenda of the brutal genocide of the Pakistan ruling group during the independence struggle of Bangladesh in 1971, but it could not be raised in that session.
Bangladesh Support Group (BASUG), an organization of Bangladeshi expatriates living in the Netherlands, took the initiative. The issue was not finally discussed due to time-constraint. Several organizations in the country, including Amara Ekatar, Projanma Ekatar, Muktijudda Jadughar Project, Ghatak Dalal Nirmul Committee of Ekatar, and Uttar Bengali Museum, are keeping an eye on the issue.
51 years after the liberation war, the United Nations is considering the issue as an achievement of this collective effort. Following this, the issue has been included in the agenda number 3 of the 51st session of the United Nations Human Rights Council held from September 21 to October 7. A joint petition by ERTA, Amara 71 and Prajanma 71 has made it possible to re-incorporate this agenda.
Mahbub Zaman, the former general secretary of DUCSU and the former general secretary of the chhatra union, officially inaugurated the rally held at Time Square in New York on Friday. Journalist Syed Mohammad Ullah inaugurated the drawing session. Welcome speech was given by Mithun Ahmed of Sammilita Sanskritik Jote, Lutfunnahar Lata, Subrata Biswas, Mujahid Ansari, Minjah Ahmed Shammu and Semanti Waheed. Ashraful Hasan Bulbul read the declaration.
Dr. Ferdous Khandkar, Sharaf Sarkar, Al Amin Babu, Tajul Imam, Abdul Batin, Rezaul Bari Bakul, Nini Wahed, Fahim Reza Noor, Obaidullah Mamun and many others spoke in the event.
Speakers in the rally said that the Pakistani army attacked the unarmed people of this country on the night of March 25, 1971 to suffocate the Bengali liberation movement. In the operation called ‘Operation Searchlight’, the massacre was carried out in Dhaka in the early hours of the night. After the brutality of the Pakistani forces, the Bengalis stood up, and the armed struggle for independence began. Independence came on December 16, 1971 after nine months of war.
In 2017, the National Genocide Day has been celebrated nationally since the proposal to observe National Genocide Day on March 25 was unanimously accepted by the National Assembly. Bangladesh has a claim to observe the day internationally, but that recognition has not yet been met.
Under the leadership of the brave freedom fighter Tajul Imam, the artists painted pictures about the liberation war. Sanjibon Kumar, Zakir Hossain Bachchu were in coordination. Zakir Ahmed Roni of Ganajagran Manch, Sulekha Pal of Mahila Parishad, Hero Chaudhur of Udichi, Alim Uddin of Progressive Forum, Lablu Ansar of Sector Commanders Forum and Rashed Ahmed were present at the time. The new generation of children and youths take the oath to build Bangladesh in the spirit of the liberation war and give red-green handprints on the huge canvas. Slogans of the Liberation War were given in the rally along with the performance of the national anthem.
16 pro-liberation organizations including Ghatak Dalal Nirmul Committee, Artis Forum, Sheikh Russell Foundation, Udichi Shilpi Group, Collective Cultural Alliance, Genocide Ekattur, Ganajagran Manch, Amara Ekattur, Progressive Forum, Bangabandhu Foundation, Bangabandhu Parishad, Ekushe Chetna Parishad, Prajanmo Ekatar Organized the event.