Hindustan Surkhiyan Desk:People from different parts of the capital began their march from as early as 10:00am.
In large and small processions, they walked carrying the country’s flag, colourful banners, placards, Awami League’s election symbol ‘boat’, and portraits of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
In unison, they chanted “Joy Bangla, Joy Bangabandhu”.
Their destination was the grand rally at Suhrawardy Udyan, organised to mark the historic March 7 speech of Bangabandhu.
As the clock neared 1:00pm, an hour before the beginning of the programme, the venue turned into a human sea full of jubilant chants reverberating throughout the area.
The huge gathering could not be contained in one location and thus spilled over to nearby areas.
The venue itself wore a colourful look. The attendees too mimicked the hues of the locale — green t-shirts with green and white caps. Most of them held green coloured boats in their hands. They sat before the podium styled after a huge boat with a large photograph of Bangabandhu delivering his historic speech, which was recently included in Unesco’s Memory of the World Register as a “documentary heritage”.
A statue of Bangabandhu delivering the speech was placed at a corner of the podium. It was tribute to the moment when the undisputed leader of the Bangalees thundered: “Since we have given blood, we will give more of it. Insha’Allah, we will free the people of this land. The struggle this time is for emancipation. The struggle this time is for independence. Joy Bangla!”
Around 3:00pm, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, also president of the Awami League, reached the venue. She got on stage and waved her hand, greeting the crowd who responded with thunderous applause. A few moments later, she began delivering her speech.
In her 45-minutes address, she highlighted the context of the historic speech and said the significance of March 7 would always remain in the lives of the Bangladeshi people. She mentioned the endurance of that day’s call for economic emancipation alongside political freedom, a call that echoed with the desires of the people gathered.