RU museum mirrors sacrifice of Liberation War martyrs | The Daily Star
12:29 AM, March 03, 2015 / LAST MODIFIED: 02:03 AM, March 07, 2015

RU museum mirrors sacrifice of Liberation War martyrs

The Shaheed Smriti Sangrahashala of Rajshahi University reminds the youth of Bangladesh the great sacrifice made by martyrs of the Language Movement and the Liberation War.

The university authorities established the museum on the campus on February 21, 1976.

Rajshahi University is the only public university to have a Liberation War museum on its campus.

The museum boasts weapons used by freedom fighters and clothes worn by them. It tells the story of Bangladesh's struggle for freedom and independence.

The museum is open for public visit every day from 9:00am to 2:00pm.     

“We get about 200 visitors every day,” said Dilruba Khanom Prodhan, senior visiting officer of the museum.

During the Liberation War in 1971, Rajshahi University, like many other educational institutions, witnessed massacres by the Pakistan occupation army.

Established a year after the Language Movement, the university was a part of a great many revolutionary movements.  

During the 1969 uprising, the students of the university on February 18 brought out a protest procession against the unlawful activities of the government. However, the government imposed Section 144 in the city.

On that day, the Pakistan occupation army shot dead Dr Shamsuzzoha, proctor of the university and a professor of chemistry, for trying to persuade the army to not shoot students who were protesting the murder of Sergeant Zahurul Haque, an accused in the historic Agartala Conspiracy Case.              

To honour Dr Shamsuzzoha, Rajshahi University observes February 18 as “Teachers' Day” and has named a residential hall for male students after him.

Besides Dr Zoha, many teachers, students and staff of the university sacrificed their lives during the 1971 Liberation War.

In the month of April in 1971, the Pakistan army created a stronghold at the present Dr Zoha Hall from where they led attacks in Rajshahi city and its adjacent areas.    

“We have collected clothes worn by the Liberation War martyrs and weapons used by them,” said Dr Shafikul Islam, curator of the Shaheed Smriti Sangrahashala, adding that they also have personal items used by the martyrs.

He said they have about 700 of such items.

Tanmoy Dey, a master's student of law, said, “I have visited the museum around six or seven times during my five years of studying at the university. I learnt a lot about Bangladesh's history from 1952 to 1971.”

Another student, Mustafiz Rony, a second-year student of journalism, said the museum especially enlightened him about the sacrifice teachers, students and staff of Rajshahi University made during the war.  

Raseduzzaman Rony, an outsider, said he has visited the Sangrahashala at least 10 times.

The museum also has over 3,000 books on the Liberation War and anti-British movements, said Dr Shafikul Islam.

RU teachers and students can borrow the books for research purposes, he said, adding that there is no scope to read the books at the museum.

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