Proclamation of Bangladeshi Independence

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Proclamation of Bangladeshi Independence
বাংলাদেশের স্বাধীনতার ঘোষণাপত্র
Proclamation of Bangladeshi Independence.jpg
Created26 March 1971
Ratified10 April 1971
LocationLiberation War Museum
Sher-e-Bangla Nagar, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Author(s)1st Declaration by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman
2nd Declaration by Provisional Government of Bangladesh
SignatoriesConstituent Assembly of Bangladesh
PurposeTo announce and explain separation from Pakistan
The first Bangladeshi flag used during the Liberation War
Part of a series on the
History of Bangladesh
Map of Bangladesh
Flag of Bangladesh.svg Bangladesh portal

The independence of Bangladesh was declared on 26 March 1971 at the onset of the Bangladesh Liberation War by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.[1][2][3] Later on March 27, the declaration was broadcast by Major Ziaur Rahman over radio,[4][5] (declaration by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the radio broadcast by Ziaur Rahman were widely circulated in the international press in late March 1971).[6] On 10 April, the Provisional Government of Bangladesh issued a proclamation on the basis of the previous declaration and established an interim constitution for the independence movement.

First declarations[edit]

On 25 March 1971, negotiations between Pakistani President Yahya Khan and Awami League leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman broke down after Khan refused to accept Rahman's plan for a new federal constitution in Pakistan. Rahman's party won an absolute majority in the National Assembly during Pakistan's first free election in 1970. However, the newly elected parliament was barred from taking power due to objections from the Pakistani military and the West Pakistan establishment. The Awami League's 6 points proposal for a Pakistani federation was strongly opposed by bureaucrats and senior politicians like Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in West Pakistan. The League initiated a civil disobedience campaign in East Pakistan to press for convening the parliament, amid rising Bengali aspirations for self-determination and independence. On 7 March 1971, Rahman addressed a huge pro-independence rally in Dhaka. Yahya Khan and Bhutto were in the city throughout March for negotiations. The political process was abruptly ended by President Khan, who faced pressure from the military for a crackdown.[7][page needed]

In the evening of 25 March, Mujib convened a meeting of senior Bengali nationalist leaders, including Tajuddin Ahmad and Colonel M A G Osmani, at his residence in Dhanmondi. They were briefed by Bengali insiders within the military of an impending crackdown. They implored Mujib to declare independence but Mujib declined to do so fearing he would be tried for treason. Tajuddin Ahmed even brought all the recording instruments but had failed to convince Mujib to record independence declaration. Rather Mujib ordered all the high ups to flee to India. However, Mujib decided to remain in Dhaka in hope of coming to a negotiated compromise with West Pakistan in becoming the Prime Minister of the whole Pakistan.

On the night of 25 March, the Pakistan Armed Forces launched Operation Searchlight in the capital of East Pakistan. Tanks rolled out on the streets of Dhaka.[8] The troops were said to have massacred students and intellectuals in Dhaka University, as well as many civilians in other parts of the city.[9] It set Hindu neighbourhoods ablaze and crushed resistance from the police and the East Pakistan Rifles.

Just before his arrest on the night of March 25, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman sent a message about attacks on EPR and police barracks in Dhaka, and declared the independence of Bangladesh. This message was broadcast from Swadhin Bangla Betar Kendro on March 26, 1971, and was widely reported in newspapers all around the world.[10] Major Ziaur Rahman, the commander of the East Bengal Regiment in Chittagong, went to the Radio station in Kalurghat, Chittagong on March 27 and declared independence of Bangladesh claiming himself as state head of new Bangladesh. But soon after he realized that the political leader of Bangladesh was Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and so he corrected the declaration by adding that he was making the proclamation on behalf of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman the father of the nation.

Zia's broadcasts were picked by a Japanese ship anchored in Chittagong Port and transmitted to Radio Australia.[11]

Constituent Assembly[edit]

On 17 April 1971, the Provisional Government of Bangladesh was formed in Mujibnagar. It converted the elected Bengali members of the national and provincial assemblies of Pakistan into the Constituent Assembly of Bangladesh. The constituent assembly issued a second proclamation of independence, which also served as the fundamental law of Bangladesh until the adoption of the constitution in 1972. The text is given in the following:-[12]

Declaration by the Constituent Assembly
PROCLAMATION OF INDEPENDENCE
Mujibnagar, Bangladesh
Dated 10th day of April 1971.

Whereas free elections were held in Bangladesh from 7 December 1970 to 17 January 1971, to elect representatives for the purpose of framing a Constitution,

AND

Whereas at these elections the people of Bangladesh elected 167 out of 169 representatives belonging to the Awami League,

AND

Whereas General Yahya Khan summoned the elected representatives of the people to meet on 3 March 1971, for the purpose of framing a Constitution,

AND

Whereas the Assembly so summoned was arbitrarily and illegally postponed for indefinite period,

AND

Whereas instead of fulfilling their promise and while still conferring with the representatives of the people of Bangladesh, Pakistan authorities declared an unjust and treacherous war,

AND

Whereas in the facts and circumstances of such treacherous conduct Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the undisputed leader of the 75 million people of Bangladesh, in due fulfillment of the legitimate right of self-determination of the people of Bangladesh, duly made a declaration of independence at Dacca on 26 March 1971, and urged the people of Bangladesh to defend the honour and integrity of Bangladesh,

AND

Whereas in the conduct of a ruthless and savage war the Pakistani authorities committed and are still continuously committing numerous acts of genocide and unprecedented tortures, amongst others on the civilian and unarmed people of Bangladesh,

AND

Whereas the Pakistan Government by levying an unjust war and committing genocide and by other repressive measures made it impossible for the elected representatives of the people of Bangladesh to meet and frame a Constitution, and give to themselves a Government,

AND

Whereas the people of Bangladesh by their heroism, bravery and revolutionary fervour have established effective control over the territories of Bangladesh,

We the elected representatives of the people of Bangladesh, as honour bound by the mandate given to us by the people of Bangladesh whose will is supreme duly constituted ourselves into a Constituent Assembly, and

having held mutual consultations, and

in order to ensure for the people of Bangladesh equality, human dignity and social justice,

declare and constitute Bangladesh to be sovereign People's Republic and thereby confirm the declaration of independence already made by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, and

do hereby affirm and resolve that till such time as a Constitution is framed, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman shall be the President of the Republic and that Syed Nazrul Islam shall be the Vice President of the Republic, and

that the President shall be the Supreme Commander of all the Armed Forces of the Republic,

shall exercise all the Executive and Legislative powers of the Republic including the power to grant pardon,

shall have the power to appoint a Prime Minister and such other Ministers as he considers necessary,

shall have the power to levy taxes and expend monies,

shall have the power to summon and adjourn the Constituent Assembly, and

do all other things that may be necessary to give to the people of Bangladesh an orderly and just Government,

We the elected representatives of the people of Bangladesh do further resolve that in the event of there being no President or the President being unable to enter upon his office or being unable to exercise his powers and duties, due to any reason whatsoever, the Vice-President shall have and exercise all the powers, duties and responsibilities herein conferred on the President,

We further resolve that we undertake to observe and give effect to all duties and obligations that devolve upon us as a member of the family of nations and under the Charter of United Nations,

We further resolve that this proclamation of independence shall be deemed to have come into effect from 26th day of March 1971.

We further resolve that in order to give effect to this instrument we appoint Prof. Yusuf Ali our duly Constituted Potentiary and to give to the President and the Vice-President oaths of office.

PROF. YUSUF ALI
Duly Constituted Potentiary
By and under the authority
of the Constituent Assembly of Bangladesh

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "ABC News, 26 March, 1971". YouTube. Retrieved 25 March 2012.
  2. ^ "Bangabandhur Shadhinota Ghoshonar Telegraphic Barta". BDNews24. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  3. ^ "arts.bdnews24.com " সংযোজনস্বাধীনতার ঘোষণা: বেলাল মোহাম্মদের সাক্ষাৎকার". bdnews24.com.
  4. ^ "March 27, 1971: Zia makes radio announcement on independence". The Daily Star. 27 March 2018. Retrieved 27 March 2018.
  5. ^ "Radio Interview". YouTube. Retrieved 27 July 2015.
  6. ^ "Swadhin Bangla Betar Kendro and Bangladesh's Declaration of Independence". TheDailyStar.net. Retrieved 25 November 2014.
  7. ^ Karim, S. A. (2005). Sheikh Mujib: triumph and tragedy. The University Press. ISBN 978-984-05-1737-4.
  8. ^ Bass, Gary Jonathan (2014). The Blood Telegram: Nixon, Kissinger, and a Forgotten Genocide. Vintage Books. p. 50. ISBN 978-0-307-74462-3. That night [25 March] ... The Pakistani military had launched a devastating assault on the Bengalis ... tanks led some of the troop columns.
  9. ^ Bass, Gary Jonathan (2014). The Blood Telegram: Nixon, Kissinger, and a Forgotten Genocide. Vintage Books. p. 70. ISBN 978-0-307-74462-3. A secret Pakistani postwar judicial commission ... included the testimony of senior Pakistani officers decrying the vengeful attack on Dacca University, the execution of Bengalis by firing squads, mass sweeps in which innocent people were killed.
  10. ^ "Swadhin Bangla Betar Kendro and Bangladesh's Declaration of Independence". TheDailyStar.net. Retrieved 25 November 2014.
  11. ^ "The Declaration of Independence". Virtual Bangladesh.
  12. ^ http://www.docstrangelove.com/uploads/1971/sbbk/documents/Proclamation%201971_M_Dalil_Vol_03_MMR.pdf

External links[edit]