Immortal Ekushey today. International Mother Language Day. Today marks the 69th anniversary of our language movement. On this day in 1952, the highways of Dhaka were stained with the blood of young students demanding the establishment of the status of mother tongue Bengal. Their struggle and sacrifice has made us unforgettable in the history of the world today.

Today 21 February as 'International Mother Language Day'

On this day in 1952, 69 years ago today, the heroic children of Bengali mothers painted the highways of Dhaka with blood in their breasts to protect the honor of their mother tongue. An unprecedented example of self-sacrifice for the mother tongue was created in the history of the world.

This unique event of Bengali self-sacrifice for the mother tongue has been recognized internationally. The recognition of 21 February as 'International Mother Language Day' by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in Paris on 17 November 1999 is a significant event. Therefore, since 2000, February 21 as International Mother Language  has been celebrated as International Mother Language Day in the member states of the United Nations (now number 193). As a result of this decision of UNESCO, a significant achievement of Bangladesh gained international recognition and the bright chapter of the language movement of Bangladesh became a glorious chapter in world history.

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Since 2000, in 193 countries of the world, the words of the naughty boys of East Bengal who are struggling for their mother tongue are being spoken. The self-sacrifice of those young people is being remembered with respect. Rafiq, Abul Barkat, Abdul Jabbar, Abdus Salam, Shafiur Rahman, Waliullah and many other unnamed martyrs are being remembered with utmost respect and pride. The Shaheed Minar in Dhaka is now not only in Dhaka, this Shaheed Minar is all over the world. It has become a sacred monument to new struggles, a symbol of victory, a source of inspiration. This Shaheed Minar is now trembling in the footsteps of millions of people from home and abroad. Even today, those who are struggling to save their language from immortality in different parts of the world, will repeatedly remember the struggling spirit of the students and people of East Bengal. Be motivated to achieve the desired goal through blood donation. So now Rafiq, Barkat, Salam, Jabbar are not only the masterpieces of Bangladesh, they are all over the world today. They also became representatives of the global workers. There is no hesitation in saying that the significance of 21st February as the International Mother Language Day is now global.

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The History Of  International Mother Language Day

February 21, 1952. There was a movement in the streets to protect the mother tongue. Damal sons of Bengali mother were killed in the firing of Pakistani government forces.The Dhaka University Rashtrabhasha Sangram Parishad called for a strike on 21 February 1952 to demand the state language Bengal. The All-Party Struggle Council also took a separate program. To prevent the strike, the government issued Section 144 for one month from February 20. 

The leaders of the language movement sat in a meeting on February 20 to decide whether section 144 would be violated. The meeting was divided among the leaders. There was a program of student assembly on 21st February at Dhaka University Amtala. As there was a division among the student leaders on the night of February 20 over the violation of Section 144, it was finally decided that the final decision would be taken on the next day, i.e. on February 21 with the opinion of the students present at the DU Amtala meeting. However, many student leaders prepared for the final decision to break section 144 the next day.Students have been coming to Amtala (the field in front of the emergency department of the present Dhaka Medical College) since the morning of February 21. A meeting of students and youths was held at 11 am.

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Shamsul Haque, Mohammad Toaha, Kazi Golam Mahbub, Khaleq Nawaz Chowdhury, Shahabuddin Ahmad Khaled, Abdul Matin spoke. After an hour-long meeting, Gaziul Haque voted in favor of breaking Section 144. All the students present agreed.

Section 144 is violated when five students come out one by one. The first group of 10 was led by Ali Ajmal, a student of Dhaka Medical College. He was first arrested. The second group of 10 was led by Ibrahim Taha and Abdus Samad, leaders of the Islamic Brotherhood, and the third group was led by Anwarul Haque and Abu Jafar Obaidullah. All of them were arrested. Police cordoned off the campus of Dhaka University.

Police fired the first blank shots at the Medical College area around 3:30 pm. The students became more angry. Medical College Hostel at 4 pm in the courtyard of the demonstrators were killed by police firing Rafiquddin Ahmad (his name is Muhammad Salahuddain confusion). Abul Barkat, a student of Dhaka University and Abdul Jabbar of Gafargaon died among the injured after 8 pm. Journalist Modabber was undergoing treatment at Dhaka Medical College at that time and can know the incident of Ekushey. On the night of the 21st, he saw 9 bodies being picked up in a police car. The weekly Sainik, the mouthpiece of the language movement, reported on February 23 that eight people had been killed. However, later in the search for history, the real names of the six martyrs have been found.

Apart from those mentioned above, the rest are Dhaka High Court employee Shafiur Rahman and Nawabpur Road resident Peon Abdus Salam.

21 February is the International Mother Language Day

February 21, 1952. There was a movement in the streets to protect the mother tongue. Damal sons of Bengali mother were killed in the firing of Pakistani government forces. Salam-Barkat-Rafiq-Shafiq-Jabbar How many more names we do not know the sacrifices of those martyrs we get back the language of our soul Bengali. As a result of the recognition of the United Nations, Ekushey February is being celebrated all over the world as the International Mother Language Day. The story of how 21st February is International Mother Language Day is for you

A great thing happened for our Bengali language that day. The day is November 17, 1999. The 30th session of UNESCO is being held in Paris, France. At that meeting of UNESCO, a proposal was passed to declare 21st February as the International Mother Language Day. As a result, Ekushey February is recognized as a significant day for all language speakers of the world. The Bengali language gained special status in the court of the world. The following year, February 21, 2000, International Mother Language Day was observed in 188 countries around the world.If we want to know the reason behind the recognition of 21st February as the International Mother Language Day, we have to look back a little. As a day of great language movement, 21st February is being celebrated with dignity in many countries of the world including Bangladesh. Even in the Indian states of West Bengal and Tripura, this day is being celebrated as 'Bangla Language Day'.

Before the international recognition of February 21, there were demands in various parts of Bangladesh to observe the day as Mother Language Day. However, the first successful entrepreneurs in this field are the multilingual and multinational mother tongue-loving groups of Canada. The group first proposed a declaration to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan on March 29, 1997, called International Mother Language Day. There, they said, Bengalis have played a very important role in protecting their mother tongue. It was a struggle for the survival of their language. So the demand for Mother Language Day is very justified.

The letter was signed by 10 members of seven nations and seven languages. These correspondents were informed by the Office of the Secretary-General of the United Nations; Not in New York, but in Paris with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

The rapper passed almost a year. But UNESCO could not reach any conclusion on the issue. Abdus Salam and Rafiqul Islam, both Bengalis living in Canada (who are members of the mother tongue group), tried to keep in touch with UNESCO on the issue. First by telephone and then by letter. In a letter to Rafiqul Islam on March 3, 1999, Anna Maria, Language Officer at UNESCO Headquarters, said, "Your request to declare February 21 as International Mother Language Day is very interesting."

This first issue seems important to an official of an international organization. Anna Maria added that there is no opportunity to raise the issue in person, it will be raised in the meeting through any member state of UNESCO's board of directors.

Maria also sent Rafiqul Islam the addresses of some UNESCO board members. Apart from Bangladesh, India, Canada, Finland and Hungary were named in it. In order for the issue to be included in the agenda of the UNESCO General Assembly, it is necessary for some member countries to submit a proposal. There was very little time at hand then. Because, the meeting of the general assembly will be held in a few days.

Rafiqul Islam from Canada contacted the Ministry of Education of Bangladesh. Considering the matter a matter of pride for the state, the ministry sent a note to the Prime Minister's Office asking for permission. The then Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina realized the shortness of time. He ignored all complications and sent the proposal directly to UNESCO headquarters without a formal document approval process. On 9 September 1999, the proposal signed by the Secretary of the Bangladesh National UNESCO Commission, Prof. Kafiluddin Ahmed, reached Paris.

Then there was the 157th session of the Executive Council of UNESCO and the 30th General Conference. There are two problems with the celebration of International Mother Language Day at UNESCO. At first, UNESCO thought that celebrating such a day would require a large sum of money. Considering the cost, there is a risk that the proposal will be rejected at first. At the same time, the Director General of UNESCO wants to make it known as International Mother Tongue Day, not International Mother Language Day. The director general proposed an allocation of one million dollars for this and ordered that the matter be brought up through a feasibility survey at the 180th session of the executive council two years later.

As a result, the issue of declaring International Mother Language Day got stuck. The proposal is expected to take at least two years to take effect. The then Education Minister of the Government of Bangladesh ASHK Sadeq played an important role in overcoming this situation. He was the leader of the Bangladesh delegation in that session. In his address to the session, he highlighted the background and significance of the 1952 language movement. He also tried to build public opinion in favor of International Mother Language Day by holding private meetings with education ministers of different countries. Even being able to convince the members present, it would not actually take a single dollar of UNESCO to celebrate the day. People of different languages ​​of the world will celebrate the day by discussing the importance of their mother tongue and singing the praises.

In this regard, in the documentation booklet of the International Mother Language Day published by the Ministry of Education, Member Secretary. Mohammad Hannan writes, ‘Education Minister ASHK Sadeq also made some personal diplomatic efforts at the same time. One night he also arranged a meeting with the leader of the Pakistani delegation. The proposal needed Pakistan's support. Because, in the political and cultural question that arose on February 21, 1952, there was a risk of a negative reaction in the minds of Pakistan. It could also have a positive role in supporting other Muslim countries, especially Saudi Arabia. In September 1999, a military government was in power in Pakistan. As a result, the Pakistani education minister did not attend the UNESCO conference that year, and the Pakistani delegation was led by the Pakistani education secretary. During the meeting, ASHK Sadeq discovered that Pakistan's education secretary had once worked in the Pakistan Civil Service under him. More interestingly, Pakistan's education secretary can speak Bengali fluently. As a result, the meeting was very successful. He assured to support the proposal.

There were also some problems with European countries. They had no objection to the declaration of International Mother Language Day. However, they questioned the date of February 21. To the Western countries, the Minister of Education argued with passion and passion that Bengalis in the world have given their blood for the right of mother tongue. That was on February 21. Then the Europeans would understand.

Thus, after a long process, November 18, 1999 became the status of International Mother Language Day. In that historic session of UNESCO, Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia were the main proponents of celebrating 21st February as International Mother Language Day. And supported by Ivory Coast, Italy, Indonesia, Iran, Comoros, Dominican Republic, Pakistan, Oman, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Bahamas, Benin, Belarus, Gambia, India, Vanuatu, Micronesia, Russian Federation, Lithuania, Lithuania And Honduras.

Achieving the status of International Mother Language Day on February 21, 1999 is not just a world victory for the Bengali language; The victory of all mother tongues in the world.

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