Notice Sent for Gazette to Recognize 'Nazrul As National Poet' Officially

Kazi Nazrul Islam || Photo: Collected

Kazi Nazrul Islam || Photo: Collected

A legal notice has been sent to the Secretary of the Ministry of Culture, Director General of Bangla Academy, and Executive Director of Kabi Nazrul Institute for publishing the gazette declaring Kazi Nazrul Islam as 'National Poet' of Bangladesh.

Today, Tuesday (May 31), 10 lawyers, including Supreme Court lawyer Mohammad Asad Uddin, sent the notice. The other lawyers who sent the notice were Mohammad Misbah Uddin, Mohammad Jobaidur Rahman, Al Reza Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Rezaul Islam, KM Mamunur Rashid, and Mohammad Ashraful Islam, Shahinur Rahman, Mohammad Rezaul Karim, and Mohammad Alauddin.

The notice said that within the next seven working days, poet Kazi Nazrul Islam has been declared as the 'National Poet' and requested to publish the gazette. Otherwise, the legal notice givers have stated that they will seek redressal from the High Court.

Mohammad Asad Uddin said, although Kazi Nazrul Islam is known orally as the national poet of Bangladesh, there is no state recognition in writing. It is said that a reception was held on 15 December 1929 at the Albert Hall in Calcutta. There the poet was given a national reception on behalf of the All India Bengalis. Many important people including Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, Sher-e-Bangla AK Fazlul Haque were present on the occasion. Nazrul was declared the 'National Poet' at the reception. Since then he has been the national poet by word of mouth. But to date, no notification or gazette has been published declaring him as the 'National Poet'. This is very sad. Because state recognition is not a verbal matter.

He added that the poet was brought to Bangladesh on May 24, 1972, after independence. He was given a house in Dhanmondi by the government to live in. He was awarded the title of DLit on 9 December 1984 at Dhaka University for his contribution to Bengali literature and culture. Then in 1976, a government order was issued with the citizenship of Bangladesh. On February 21, 1976, he was awarded the Ekushey Padak. Everything has written documents with pictures and information. But the cruel truth is that there is no written document or proof of the official declaration as a 'national poet'.

Nazrul's name has been mentioned as a national poet in two laws of Bangladesh. He is also mentioned as a national poet in various government events. But all indirect recognition. Such recognition may be erased by the passage of time. The next generation may not even know one day that the name of our national poet is Kazi Nazrul Islam.

He is part of our history. History and national recognition can never be unwritten. Unwritten history and information are lost in the evolution of time. For this, the state has to allocate a huge amount of money for the preservation of history and heritage.

Besides, there have been repeated demands on behalf of the poet's family to declare Nazrul a national poet. Demands have also been made by Nazrul researchers and those involved in literature and culture. But so far no visible initiative has been taken by the government in this regard. Therefore, this legal notice has been sent to conscious citizens of the country and the lawyers of the high court.

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