Over two decades ago, he had launched a social movement for road safety following the death of his wife in a road crash.
Since then, he has been advocating and persistently promoting the movement for a safe road under the banner "Nirapad Sarak Chai (We demand safe road)".
Ilias Kanchan, a popular film star, also proposed the United Nations to announce an International Road Safety Day to raise awareness about the issue.
His long and ceaseless campaign was finally recognised by the government yesterday through the cabinet approving a proposal to declare October 22, the day Ilias's wife died in 1993, as "The National Safe Roads Day".
Briefing reporters after the weekly cabinet meeting at the Secretariat, Cabinet Secretary M Shafiul Alam said the day would be officially observed with different campaigns promoting road safety.
He added that the day was chosen in memory of Ilias's late wife Jahanara Kanchan, who died in a road crash on her way to Bandarban.
The day had so far been observed unofficially. Ilias, the chairman of 'Nirapad Sharak Chai' movement, has played a role in the announcement to officially observe the day, the cabinet secretary added.
Ilias termed the cabinet decision historic. "It's a great decision by the government."
The film star also hoped that observance of the day would boost road safety awareness across the country and help reduce deaths on roads.
“As a result, accidents on roads will come down”, he told The Daily Star and urged people to come forward and play their roles to stop road crashes from their respective positions.
Ilias also thanked the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her cabinet colleagues for recognising the day.