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Sheikh Hasina's Homecoming Day Tomorrow

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. File Photo

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. File Photo

The 44th homecoming day of Awami League President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will be observed tomorrow. On May 17 in 1981, she returned to the country after a long exile. Boarding on an aircraft of the Indian Airlines, Awami League President Sheikh Hasina reached the then Kurmitola Airport here from the Indian capital of New Delhi via Kolkata at 4.30pm on that day.

Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was brutally killed along with most of his family members on August 15 in 1975 and his two daughters-- Sheikh Hasina and Sheikh Rehana --- luckily escaped the brutal assassination as they stayed abroad.

In a national council session of the Awami League on February 14, 15 and 16 in 1981, Sheikh Hasina was elected as party president in her absence and then she returned to the country on May 17.

A large number of people had gathered outside the Kurmitola Airport in Dhaka to receive Sheikh Hasina on that day. They had come from every corner of the country and the whole thoroughfare from the Farmgate point to Kurmitola in the city was full of jubilant crowds.

After a long hovering over the airport, an aircraft of Indian Airlines carrying Sheikh Hasina from New Delhi via Kolkata, touched the runway at 4:30 pm.

"I have returned to the country not to become a leader of the Awami League, rather to participate in the struggle for freedom by staying beside the people," said the AL president in a heart touching reception awarded by nearly 1.5 million people at the airport at that time.

She added: "I want to stay beside you as your sister, as your daughter, and as a worker of Awami League, who believes in the ideals of Bangabandhu."

The ruling Awami League (AL) has taken elaborate programmes marking the 44th homecoming day of Prime Minister and AL President Sheikh Hasina. As part of the programmes, the party leaders will greet the premier, the eldest daughter of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, at her Ganabhaban residence here at 9 am on Friday.

A discussion will be held at Dhaka District AL Bhaban in the city's Tejgaon area at 3:30 pm as AL Presidium Member Engineer Mosharraf Hossain will chair it. National leaders and intellectuals will address the meeting.

Special doa and prayers will also be offered at mosques, temples, churches and pagodas to mark the day. Doa will be offered at Baitul Mukarram National Mosque after Jummah prayers.

Christian Community will hold special prayer at Mirpur Baptist Church at 9 am on the day while Buddhist Community at International Buddhist Monastery in the city's Merul Badda at 10 am and Hindu Community at Dhakeshwari National Temple at 11.30 am.

AL's relief and social welfare subcommittee has also taken elaborate programmes to observe the day.

As part of the programmes, food will be distributed among the orphans of Tejgaon's Rahmate Alam Islam Mission orphanage today.

Awami League General Secretary and Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader and Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal will attend the programme.

On May 17, food will be distributed among the orphans of Azimpur Salimullah Muslim Atimkhana, Salimullah Road's Atimkhana in Mohammadpur, Sobhanbag Masjid Atimkhana and Badda Beraid Rahim Ullah Atimkhana.

Food will also be distributed among the orphans of the atimkhanas (orphanages) adjacent to Hazrat Shahjalal (R) Mazar (shrine) in Sylhet, Hazrat Shah Amanat (R) and Garib Ullah Shah (R) in Chattogram on the same day.

The members of the subcommittee will also distribute food among orphans in different districts across the country.

On May 18, Foreign Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud will distribute food among the inmates of Chattogram's Kadam Mobarak Orphanage._BSS

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