Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Saturday urged the countrymen to stay alert against the anti-liberation forces so that they cannot assume state power.
“People should remain alert so that the anti-liberation forces, who can attack our rich heritage as well as our existence, cannot grab power,” Hasina said.
The premier came up with the remark while exchanging greetings of Pahela Baishakh, the first day of Bangla New Year-1425, with the leaders and activists of Awami League (AL) at her official residence Ganabhaban.
Offering greetings to the countrymen, the premier wished that the New Year would usher new hope and inspiration among people.
She said her government would build Sonar Bangla in the light of the dream of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
“We have to always remember the words of Bangabandhu ... we are Bangalee, Bangladesh is our country and Bangla is my language ...so we have to remain careful so that no evil force against the spirit can come to power again,” she said.
Pahela Baishakh is the lone festival, which is celebrated irrespective of caste, colour and creed in the country.
Besides, Pahela Baishakh is the beginning of traditional business activities of Bangalee people, who open the new ledger book (hal khata) of their businesses on the day and close the old ones.
The prime minister alleged that a section of people are trying to put religious colour on the festival.
“They do it as they do not have any love for the Bangla language and Bangalee people. They are still in love with Pakistan,” she said.
Pointing out the long conspiracy against Bangalee culture and values, the prime minister said the Pakistani rulers as well many rulers following Bangabandhu’s killing tried to prevent Bangalee people from celebrating the first day of the Bangla calendar.
She also cited an example during the BNP-led government, which had tried to prevent celebrations of the Bangla Nababarsha-1400 in 1993.
“They could not suppress indomitable Bangalees as the nation under the auspices of a national committee headed by poet Sufia Kamal welcomed the year 1400 and the new century of Bangla calendar overcoming all barriers,” she said.
“Rabindranath Tagore and Kazi Nazrul also welcomed Bangla year in their life wishing prosperousness of Bangalee nation. But, BNP could not understand their languages,” she said, adding that such conduct would have hurt Tagore if he was alive.
Hasina, also the president of the ruling AL, bitterly criticised the post-75 governments for distorting the history and destroying the spirit of War of Independence by rehabilitating the war criminals.
She said Bangabandhu was killed at a time when he was taking forward the war-ravaged country.
“After his assassination, the war criminals and killers of Bangabandhu were rehabilitated and the country was taken to opposite direction,” she said.
AL central leaders, headed by general secretary Obaidul Quader, greeted the prime minister with a bouquet of flowers.
Samyabadi Dal leader Dilip Barua on behalf of his party and 14-party alliance also greeted the premier.
Leaders of Dhaka South and North units of AL, Mahila Awami League, mayor of Dhaka South City Corporation, leaders of Jubo League, Sramik League, Krishak League, Swechchhasebak League, Jubo Mahila League, Bangladesh Chhatra League, Bangabandhu Ainjibi Parishad, Krishibid Institute and Bangladesh Medical Association also greeted the prime minister.
Officials of the Prime Minister’s Office led by Principal Secretary Md. Nozibur Rahman greeted the prime minister with bunch of flowers.
On the occasion, the guests were entertained with traditional Bangalee sweetmeats like moa, murki, muroli, kadma and zilapi.