The nation today celebrated Sheikh Russel Day in a befitting manner marking the 59th birthday of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s youngest son Shaheed Sheikh Russel.
Russel, also the youngest brother of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, was born on October 18 in 1964 at the historic Bangabandhu Bhaban at Dhanmondi road number 32 in the capital.
But he was brutally assassinated along with most of his family members, including his father Bangabandhu, on August 15, 1975 when he was a student of class four at University Laboratory School.
The Cabinet Division last year declared October 18, the birthday of Sheikh Russel, as Sheikh Russel Day under the category “Ka”.
To mark the day, government bodies, ruling Awami League and its associate bodies, and different socio-cultural organisations chalked out various programmes at national levels.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has paid rich tributes to August 15 martyrs at the Banani graveyard here on the occasion of Sheikh Russel Day.
The premier along with her younger sister Sheikh Rehana went to the Banani graveyard and paid glowing homage by placing wreath this morning.
After laying the wreath, they stood in solemn silence for some time. They also spread flower petals on the graves.
Sheikh Hasina and Sheikh Rehana also offered Fateha and prayed for eternal peace of the departed souls of the martyrs of August 15.
Awami League (AL) central leaders led by General Secretary Obaidul Quader placed wreaths at the graves of Sheikh Russel and other martyrs of August 15, 1975 carnage at Banani graveyard here this morning.
Presidium Members Shajahan Khan and Jahangir Kabir Nanak, Joint General Secretaries-Information and Broadcasting Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud and AFM Bahauddin Nasim, Organising Secretary Ahmed Hossain, State Minister for Shipping Khalid Mahmud Chowdhury, AL Publicity and Publications Secretary Dr Abdus Sobhan Golap, Labour Affairs Secretary Habibur Rahman Siraj, Agriculture and Cooperatives Secretary Faridunnahar Laily, Science and Technology Affairs Secretary Engineer Abdus Sabur, Women Affairs Secretary Meher Afroz Chumki and Central Working Committee member Dr Mustafa Jalal Mohiuddin were present, among others.
Later, Dhaka City North and South units of AL, Awami Jubo League, Awami Swechchhasebak League, Krishak League, Tanti League, Sramik League, Bangladesh Chhatra League, Mohila Awami League, Mohila Sramik League and different social and cultural bodies also laid wreaths at the grave of Russel.
Later, fateha, milad and doa mahfil were also offered at the graveyard mosque seeking eternal peace of Russel and other martyrs of August 15 carnage.
Marking the Sheikh Russel Day-2022, the ICT Division arranged a programme and distribution of Sheikh Russel Padak-2022 at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC) here.
The prime minister also virtually addressed the programme from her official Ganabhaban residence and distributed prizes among the winners.
She also inaugurated 5000 Sheikh Russel Digital Labs and 300 Sheikh Russel Schools of Future across the country at the function.
The prime minister unveiled a book titled “Duronto Pranobanto Sheikh Russel” edited by State Minister for Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Zunaid Ahmed Palak as well.
Presided over by Zunaid Ahmed Palak, the programme was also addressed, among others, by ICT Division Senior Secretary NM Zeaul Alam, Bangladesh Jatiyo Shishu Kishore Parishad Secretary General KM Shahidullah and child speaker Afsa Zafor Srijita.
On behalf of the prime minister, Zunaid Ahmed Palak distributed Sheikh Russel Padak-2022 among the individual and institutions winners in various categories.
Awards were also distributed among the winners of the nationwide quiz, sports, arts and cultural competitions held marking the Sheikh Russel Day.
A video documentary on Sheikh Russel and a theme song marking Sheikh Russel Day-2022 made by the ICT Division were also screened at the function.
Awami Jubo League arranged a discussion and cultural function at AL’s Bangabandhu Avenue Central Office here.
AL Joint General Secretary and Information and Broadcasting Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud addressed it as the chief guest.
Awami Swechchhasebak League arranged another discussion at Institution of Diploma Engineers, Bangladesh (IDEB) at Kakrail here.
AL Joint General Secretary AFM Bahauddin Nasim addressed it as the chief guest with Swechchhasebak League acting President Gazi Mejbaul Hossain Sachchu in the chair.
Islamic Foundation (IF) arranged a discussing and special prayers after Johr prayers at Baitul Mukarram National Mosque.
State Minister for Religious Affairs Md Faridul Haque Khan joined it.
Special prayers and munajat were also offered at all divisional offices of IF, 50 Islamic missions, seven imam training academy and mass education centres of mosque-based child and mass education programme across the country. Cutting of cake, discussions, drawing and cultural competitions were also arranged.
The day was also celebrated at Bangladesh missions abroad as well. National dailies published supplements highlighting the significance of the day.