The people of Bengal will never forget the contribution of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in the freedom movement of Bangladesh, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Thursday.
She was participating in a programme held to celebrate Vijay Divas at Netaji Indoor stadium on Thursday evening. “People of Bengal have special love and affection for Bangladesh and the close ties between the two countries will remain forever,” Banerjee said.
She extended her best wishes to Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. “The two countries are politically divided but their cultural affinity has removed all the differences. Just as we cannot divide Rabindranath and Nazrul, the people of these two countries cannot be separated,” she said.
Recollecting her school days, Banerjee said: “My father used to listen to the radio during the Independence movement of Bangladesh and we had memorised the songs like Shono ekti Mujiburer theke lokkho Mujiburer kantho.”
She thanked the Bangladesh government for organising a programme on this day to remember the martyrs and make the present generation aware of the historical significance of the day.
Banerjee said: “I feel sorry if artists from Bangladesh do not come and take part in Rabindra Jayanti. Similarly, many of our artists are performing in Bangladesh every year.” She said the soil of Bengal and Bangladesh “speaks of communal harmony. We observe Roza and celebrate Durga Puja and the religious closeness has intensified our bond.
She said that every year, the martyrs were remembered on February 21 which was observed as Language Day. “One of the memorable programmes I have attended was held on February 21 in Bangladesh.”