Father of the Nation

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Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman

 

Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was born on March 17, 1920, in Tongipara village in the Gopalganj subdivision of the Faridpur district in the eastern part of the province of Bengal in British India. An extroverted, sports-loving young man, Mujib was well liked by his teachers and friends, but never distinguished himself in his studies. To the dismay of his father, a small landholder (sheikh is one of the titles often assumed by the landed gentry) and a government official, Mujib showed the first sign of his future revolutionary leadership by distributing rice from his father’s stockpile to the famine-stricken peasantry of his area.

A charismatic leader, Sheikh Mujib epitomized anti-colonial leadership in the Third World. He organized dissent and rebellion against the British and rose against the injustice and exploitation by the power-wielders in West Pakistan against the Bengali population of East Pakistan. For Sheikh Mujib the battle for freedom from exploitation was never-ending. Even after winning independence for Bangladesh from Pakistan, an exploitation-free Bengali society eluded him. When he seemed to be having some success in tiding over the most difficult period of post-liberation history, he was assassinated and his family massacred in a fluke coup staged by a handful of junior officers of the fledgling Bangladesh army.