Dhaka, Mar.26 (ANI): Bangladesh on Monday observed its 42nd Independence Day, paying homage to its martyrs with several cultural programmes organised to commemorate the special day.
People celebrated the occasion with a pledge to uphold the spirit of the War of Liberation amid an intensified campaign to expedite the trials of war criminals.
Country's defence forces together with numerous students participated in the parade march at the main stadium in capital Dhaka paying tribute to the martyrs, who sacrificed their lives for the country's independence.
The day started with a 31-gun salute early in the morning as a mark of respect to the heroic struggle of this nation, which suffered a protracted subjugation under foreign rules from time to time till achieving the Victory on December 16, 1971.
President Mohammad Zillur Rahman and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina addressed the nation with the messages to uphold the true spirit of the War of Liberation to fulfil the dreams of the valiant freedom fighters, marking the Independence and National Day.
The President, in his message, called upon all to work together being imbued with the spirit of the War of Liberation to expedite the process of economic self-reliance and democratic advancement of the country.
The Prime Minister recalled with deep gratitude to the greatest heroes of the soil and conveyed her best wishes to the compatriots at home and abroad.
Thousands of students participated in the event which was organised at the national stadium in Dhaka and several colourful programmes were also organised nationwide to mark the day.
"We have come here to celebrate 40 years of our liberation. After a nine month long war we got the country liberated. So, I am here to celebrate the day," a participant, Mithi Giti.
The day is observed as a public holiday in Bangladesh.
Bangladesh, formerly East Pakistan, was liberated from Pakistan after a nine-month war of independence.
On March 26th, 1971, Pakistan launched military attacks against Bangladeshi civilians, students and armed personnel who collectively demanded separation from West Pakistan.
The war continued for nine months and finally culminated in the country's independence on December 16, 1971, when Pakistan's Lieutenant-General Amir Abdullah Khan Niazi officially surrendered.
Approximately three million civilians were killed in the war.
India helped its eastern neighbour to emerge as independent Bangladesh in 1971 from what was then East Pakistan. (ANI)
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