Shaheed Noor Hossain Day, a red-letter day in restoration of democracy in Bangladesh, is being observed today with due solemnity.
On this day in 1987, Noor Hossain, who imprinted his bare chest and back with the slogan “Swairachar nipat jak, gonotantra mukti pak” (down with autocracy, let democracy be freed), was gunned down when police opened fire on an anti-autocracy demonstration in Dhaka’s Zero Point.
This place was renamed “Noor Hossain Chattar (square)”.
The martyrdom of Noor Hossain and others during the mass upsurge of late 1990s expedited the anti-autocracy movement.
In the face of the movement, autocratic ruler HM Ershad had to step down on December 6, 1990.
To observe the day in a befitting manner, different socio-cultural and professional organisations, as well as Awami League, have chalked out elaborate programmes.
President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages on the eve of the day.
President Hamid, in his message, said November 10 is an important day in the history of movement for democracy. “I recall all the martyrs with respect, including Noor Hossain, who embraced martyrdom for the country’s democracy,” the president said.
In her message, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said the country’s democracy was restored through the sacrifice of the lives of many.
She prayed for eternal peace of the departed souls of all martyrs, including Noor Hossain, and conveyed deep sympathy to the bereaved family members.
To mark the day, Awami League will place wreaths at Shaheed Noor Hossain Square at 8am and offer special prayers.
In a separate statement yesterday, Awami League General Secretary and Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader urged all, including party units across the country, associate and likeminded organisations to observe the day in a befitting manner.