Abdul Matin (language activist)

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This article is about Bangladeshi language activist. For other persons, see Abdul Matin.
Abdul Matin
AbdulMatin single.jpg
Native name আব্দুল মতিন ভাষা মতিন
Born (1926-12-03)December 3, 1926
Sirajganj District, Bengal Presidency, British India (now Bangladesh)
Died October 8, 2014(2014-10-08) (aged 87)
Dhaka, Bangladesh
Nationality Bangladeshi
Other names Bhasha Matin
Occupation Language Activist of Bengali Language Movement
Awards Independence Day Award

Abdul Matin (December 3, 1926 – October 8, 2014) was a language activist of the Bengali Language Movement that took place in the erstwhile East Pakistan (currently Bangladesh) to make Bengali one of the state language of Pakistan. He was one of the student leaders and organizers of the movement. His contribution to the movement has been hailed by the other activists and students as he was popularly known as Bhasha Matin.[1]

Early life[edit]

Matin was admitted to Darjeeling School in 1932. After passing the matriculation in 1943 he came back to East Bengal. Later that year he was admitted to Rajshahi College. According to him he had no political consensus before getting into the college. He was graduated in 1947.

Involvement in Language Movement[edit]

Matin was active during the language movement. When the government decided not to include Bengali as one of the official languages, students protested on March 11, 1948, where Matin joined for picketing. On March 24, 1948 after Mohammad Ali Jinnah made his speech at Race Course Maidan (currently Suhrawardy Udyan), he came to Dhaka University for convocation. Matin was also present at the ceremony to receive his degree. When Jinnah repeated his position about language policy, however, Matin stood up at the chair and shouted, No. It can not be. Other students also supported him during that time.[2][3][full citation needed] In mid-September 1951, in a meeting at the central building of Dhaka University, Matin said that they have no complaints about Urdu, but he wanted Bangle's status with Urdu.[4] Matin was present at the meeting on January 30, 1952 and became a member of the Shorbodolio Rashtrabhasha Kormoporishod. Earlier, on March 11, 1951, a rally was held at Dhaka University, organised by the then East Pakistan Chatra (Student League). Khaleque Nawaz Khan, veteran student leader and President of the then Chatra League, presided over that meeting. In that meeting Matin was selected as convener of the Dhaka University Language Action Committee.[5]

Other political involvements[edit]

Matin joined with the 4th class clerks at one of their procession. There he was arrested and spend two months in prison. Coming back from jail, the Vice Chancellor of the university asked him for a bond. After his refusal, however, he was sacked for three years, which, according to him, was the turning point of his political career.He played an active role to form Chhatra Union in April 1952 and became the second president of its East Pakistan unit. Matin was appointed secretary of Communist Party's Pabna district unit in 1954. Three years later, he joined Maulana Bhasani's NAP.

He formed East Pakistan Communist Party (ML) in 1958 and followed the ideology of Charu Majumdar, a communist revolutionary of India.

After liberation, he fought against Jatiya Rakkhi Bahini and was arrested in 1972.


Matin died on October 8, 2014 at Dhaka's Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU).[1][6] He was undergoing treatment at the ICU after a stroke on August 18 and was on life support after his condition deteriorated on October 3.


Matin was awarded Ekushey Padak in 2001. In 2008 University of Dhaka conferred honorary Doctor of Law degree on him for his contribution to the Language Movement.[7]


  1. ^ a b "Bhasha Matin passes away". banglanews24.com. Archived from the original on October 13, 2014. 
  2. ^ Ekusher Smriticharon '80 (in Bengali). Dhaka: Bangla Academy. 1980. p. 113. 
  3. ^ Banglabazar Patrika, Magh 30, 1399
  4. ^ Sen, Shoronanondo (1971). Dhakar Chitthi (in Bengali) (1st ed.). Kolkata. p. 109. 
  5. ^ Ekusher Smriticharan '80 (in Bengali). Dhaka: Bangla Academy. 1980. p. 138. 
  6. ^ "Language movement hero Matin passes away". The Daily Star. October 8, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Language movement hero Matin no more". The Daily Star. October 9, 2014.