Eastern Times Correspondent, Dhaka, 7 December: The High Court has ordered the government to protect the murals of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman set up in the Muktijoddha complexes or any other areas across the country.
It also ordered the cabinet secretary to submit a report in a month on the progress of the initiative to set up murals in the districts and upazilas.
Justice FRM Nazmul Ahasan and Justice Shahed Nuruddin of the High Court issued the order on Monday, amid reports of defacing Bangabandhu’s statue in Kushtia and some religious bigotry groups opposing the statues of the Father of the Nation.
Earlier on Feb 25, the High Court ordered the government to announce Mar 7, the day Bangabandhu called for a struggle for independence from Pakistan, as National Historic Day.
It also ordered the government to set up Bangabandhu’s murals in the district and upazila complexes within the Mujib Year or the year of Bangabandhu’s birth centenary.
As ordered by the court, the cabinet secretary on Monday submitted a report filed by Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Haque.
Later, Deputy Attorney General ABM Abdullah Al Mahmud Bashar presented it to the court. Petitioner lawyer Bashir Ahmed was also present in the hearing.
The cabinet has already approved the bill of announcing Mar 7 as ‘National Historic Day’ as per the court’s directive.
On Mar 7, 1971, at the Suhrawardy Udyan, Bangabandhu urged the nation to prepare for a war of independence amid escalating tensions between East Pakistan and the powerful political and military establishment of West Pakistan.
The war broke out 18 days after Bangabandhu’s speech when the Pakistani forces began a genocide of Bengalis. Bangladesh achieved its independence following a bloodbath of nine months. The Pakistan forces surrendered at the Suhrawardy Udyan on Dec 16, 1971.
UNESCO included Bangabandhu’s 7th March speech as a ‘documentary heritage’ along with other 77 historical documents from different countries in the Memory of the World International Register.