Sheikh Mujibur Rahman (17 March 1920 – 15 August 1975), In short, Sheikh Mujib or Mujib was the first President of Bangladesh and one of the most influential political figures in the Indian subcontinent. He led centrally in the struggle for separation of India from British India to the separation of Bengal and later in the battle to establish Bangladesh from East Pakistan. It provides leadership centrally.
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is known as the “Jatira janaka” or “Father of the Nation” as the modern architect of ancient Bengali civilization. He served as the president of Awami League, established by Maulana Abdul Hamid Khan Bhasani, the first president of Bangladesh and later the Prime Minister of this country. He was well known to the public as Sheikh Mujib and Sheikh Sahib and his title is “Bangabandhu.”
His daughter Sheikh Hasina is the current president of Bangladesh Awami League and the present Prime Minister of Bangladesh.
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was a young student leader in the early stages of East Pakistan politics after the separation of India in 1947. He later became the president of the Awami League, established by Maulana Abdul Hamid Khan Bhasani. An advocate of socialism, He created a movement against all forms of discrimination against the people of East Pakistan at that time.
To establish the rights of the people, he once proposed a six-point autonomy scheme, which considered as a secessionist plan in West Pakistan. Among the six-point demands the increased provincial autonomy, which made him one of the main opposition to Ayub Khan’s military rule. His trial began in 1968 on charges of conspiracy and conspiracy with the Indian government, and he later acquitted.
The Awami League, under his leadership, won a huge victory in the 1970 elections. Yet he was not allowed to form a government. After Sheikh Mujib’s talks with then-President Yahya Khan and West Pakistan politician Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto over the formation of a new Pakistan government, the Pakistani army staged a massacre in Dhaka city at midnight on 25 March 1971. He arrested that same night and later taken to West Pakistan.
Rahimuddin Khan condemned him to death in the military court but not executed. After nine months of the bloody liberation war, an independent state called Bangladesh established on 16 December 1971, with the surrender of the Pakistan Army to the Bangladesh-India Joint Forces.
On 10 January 1972, Sheikh Mujib returned from his Pakistani jail and returned home and began serving as the first President of Bangladesh. On 12 January 1972, he assumed the prime ministership by introducing a parliamentary system. He was ideologically a believer in Bengali nationalism, socialism, democracy and secularism, collectively known as Mujibabad.
Despite drafting a constitution based on nationalism, socialism, democracy and secularism and trying to run the state accordingly, he had a hard time dealing with acute poverty, unemployment, pervasive anarchy as well as widespread corruption. In 1975, he declared one-party politics to curb rising political unrest.
Seven months later, on 15 August 1975, he was assassination by a group of military officers. In a 2004 survey led by the BBC, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman voted the “Best Bengali of all time.”
Birth and education
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was born on March 17, 1920, in the village of Tungipara in Patgati union of Gopalganj subdivision of Faridpur district in the then Indian subcontinent. His father, Sheikh Lutfar Rahman was the serestadar of the Gopalganj Sessions Court (who maintains the court’s account) and his mother’s name was Saira Khatun. Sheikh Mujibur Rahm was the third child to have four daughters and two sons.
His older sisters are Fatima Begum, Achia Begum, Helen and younger sister Lily. His younger brother named Sheikh Abu Nasser. Sheikh Mujib started teaching at Gimdanga Primary School in 1927 when he was seven years old. At the age of nine, he attended Gopalganj Public School in 1929 and studied here till 1934.
In 1937, Gopalganj enrolled in the seventh grade at the Mathuranath Institute Mission School. He could not continue his schooling for four years from 1934. Because he had to undergo surgery because of a complex disease in his eye and it took a long time to recover from it. He passed matriculation from Gopalganj Missionary School.
Political activism in British India
Mujib’s political life began in 1939 when he was in a missionary school. This year, the school came to visit the then Chief Minister of the Presidency of Bengal AK Fazlul Huq Sher Bengali And later, the Prime Minister of Bengal and even the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Hussein Shaheed Suhrawardy.
He took them to a party based on the demands of the school’s roof renovation, which he himself led. In 1940, All India joined the Muslim Students Federation. There he elected for a term of one year. After passing the Entrance in 1942, Calcutta joined Islamia College (now known as Maulana Azad College) to study law. The college affiliated to the University of Calcutta was then very famous.
From this college, the student started active politics. He joined the Bengal Muslim League in 1943 and came close to Hussein Shahid Suhrawardy, a Bengali Muslim leader of Kashmiri descent. Here the main theme of his student movement was the movement for the establishment of Pakistan as a separate Muslim state.
In 1943 he elected councilor of the Bengal Muslim League. In 1944, the conference of the All Bengal Muslim Students League held in Kushtia, present-day Bangladesh. Sheikh Mujib played a unique role in this conference. Sheikh Mujibur Rahman nominated as the secretary of the “Faridpur District Association” made up of Faridpur residents living in Kolkata.
Two years after this, Islamia College elected the Secretary-General of the Student Union. In 1947, the year of partition, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman received his BA degree from Islamia College under Calcutta University. During the separation of India and Pakistan, there were terrible Hindu-Muslim riots in Kolkata.
During this period, Mujib became involved in various political activities with Suhrawardy to protect the Muslims and control the riots. After the separation of Pakistan-India, Sheikh Mujib returned to East Pakistan and joined the Law Department of Dhaka University. On January 4, 1948, the East Pakistan Muslim Chhatra League was established by which he became one of the leading student leaders of the province. At that time, he leaned on socialism and saw it as the only solution for poverty, unemployment and poor living standards.
The political leadership of the then Pakistan
Bengali language movement
Sheikh Mujib’s political activities began by taking part in the established movement demanding to make Bangla one of the state languages. On February 23, 1948, the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Khawaja Nazimuddin, told the People’s Assembly that Urdu would be Pakistan’s only official language. His comments triggered adverse reactions throughout East Pakistan.
Defendant Sheikh Mujibur Rahman immediately decided to launch a protest against this pre-planned decision of the Muslim League. On March 2 this year, a conference of leaders of different political parties held at Fazlul Huq Hall of Dhaka University. The conference discussed the principles of agitation against the Muslim League so that Sheikh Mujib proposed a resolution. From there, it decided to form an all-party struggle council.
On March 11, 1948, a strike observed in Dhaka at the call of the Council. During the strike of Sheikh Mujib and some political activists were arrested in front of the Secretariat building. But in the face of intense protests by the students. Sheikh Mujib and other student leaders were released on March 15.
On the occasion of their release, the all-party Rajbhasha Sangharsh Parishad rallied at Batala, Dhaka University, so that Mujib presided. The police blocked the rally. Sheikh Mujib immediately declared a nationwide student strike on March 17, 1948, in protest of the police activities.
Dhaka University on March 9, he led a movement aimed at defending the rights of employees in the fourth grade. He was again detained on September 11, 1948, and expelled. It is to be noted that on August 14, 2010, his lost scholarship (Dhaka University) was returned.
Sheikh Mujib released from jail on January 21, 1949. After he released from prison, he again involved in a movement to demand the fourth class employees for which he fined from the university. But he refuses to pay the fine and declares it illegal. In the same series, on April 26, Shamsul Haq, an opposition candidate from the League, won a by-election in Tangail.
Sheikh Mujib for the success of his movement, which began a hunger strike in front of the vice-chancellor’s residence, he arrested again. It was at this time that he was expelled from Dhaka University. The allegations against him were that he was leading the movement to secure the rights of the fourth grade employees at the university.
Establishment of Awami League
On 23rd June, Suhrawardy and Maulana Bhasani created the East Pakistan Awami Muslim League and Sheikh Mujib left the Muslim League and entered this new organization. He was elected joint general secretary of the party’s East Pakistan section. Get out of jail in late June.
Upon his release, he joined the movement against the food crisis. In September this year, was temporarily detained for violating section 144, but eventually was freed. After this, Bhasani was arrested and tried to send a delegation to Liaquat Ali Khan along with Maulana Abdul Hamid Khan Bhasani. That was the end of October. In early January 1950, the Awami Muslim League organized an anti-famine procession in Dhaka, celebrating the arrival of East Pakistan by Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan.
Sheikh Mujib was also arrested this time for leading the procession. He was jailed for two years. On 26 January 1952, Khwaja Nazimuddin declared that Urdu would be Pakistan’s only official language. Despite this announcement, he was involved in organizing protests and resistance by directing the state-language struggle council by giving instructions from the jail despite being in prison.
Then, on 21 February, it was decided to observe the state-language demand as a day of collection. At the same time, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in prison hunger strike from 14 February. His fast was productive for 13 days. He was released from jail on 26 February.
United Front Selection
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was elected Secretary-General (General Secretary) of the party at the end of the East Pakistan Awami League Council session on 9 July 1953. On 14 November of the same year, it decided to form a united front with other parties to participate in the general election. General elections were held on 10 March 1954.
In this election, the United Front won a huge margin of 223 out of 237 seats, out of which 143 won the Awami League. Sheikh Mujib won the seat in Gopalganj by a margin of 13,000 votes. There, his rival was the influential Muslim League leader Wahiduzzaman. He was given the responsibility of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry On 15 May.
On 29 May, the central government disbanded the United Front. On his return from Karachi on 30 May, he detained at the airport. Released 23 December. On 5 June 1955, Sheikh Mujib nominated as a member of the Legislative Assembly.
On 17 June, the Awami League presented 21 points in a conference held at Paltan Maidan, which included the autonomy of East Pakistan. At a meeting of the Executive Committee of the party on 23 June, it decided that if the independence of East Pakistan not achieved, all members of the Legislative Assembly would resign. At the People’s Assembly session in Karachi on 25 August, Sheikh Mujib said:
Sir [President of the People’s Council] you will see that they want to name “East Pakistan” instead of “East Bengal.” We have repeatedly claimed that; You have to use Bangla instead of Pakistan. The word “Bengali” has its own history, tradition. You can change this name by combining with our people.
If you want to change that name, we have to go back to Bengal and ask the people there whether they will accept the name change. The question of one unit may be included in the structure. Why do you want to pick it up now? What about adopting Bengali as a state language? What is the solution to the question of forming a joint constituency? Thinking about our autonomy? The people of East Bengal are ready to consider the question of one unit, with solutions to other questions. So I would appeal to my friends in that section to accept the verdict given by our people’s referendum or referendum.
In the special session of the Bangladesh Awami Muslim League held on 21-23 October 1955, the word “Muslim” unanimously dropped from the name of the party. Sheikh Mujib re-elected secretary-general of the party.
The Awami League meeting with the Chief Minister on 3 February demanded the party to include autonomy in the draft constitution. On 14 July, a proposal made against the military presence in the state administration, which he submitted to the government. On 7 September, an anti-famine march led by him came out.
At least three people were killed when police opened fire on the procession in violation of section 144. On 16 September, Sheikh Mujib joined the Coalition Government and simultaneously served the Ministry of Industry, Trade, Labor, Corruption and Rural Assistance.
He resigned from the Cabinet on 30 May 1957, urging him to spend full time for the party. On 7 August, China and the Soviet Union leave for a state visit. On 7 October 1958, the President of Pakistan, Major General Iskandar Mirza, and Ayub Khan, the head of the army, issued military laws in the country, declaring that all political activities forbidden.
He arrested on 11 October this year. He charged with several baseless charges while in jail. Sheikh Mujibur Rahman released after 14 months of continuous detention but arrested again at the jail gate. He released from jail in 1961 by filing a writ petition in the High Court. This time he started a secret political activity.
Along with other general student leaders, he secretly formed an organization called the Independent Bangla Revolutionary Council, which aimed at achieving Bangladesh’s independence. He again detained on 6 February 1962, under the Public Safety Act.
He released on the 18th of the same month after the removal of a four-year martial law on 2 June. On 25 June, he, along with other political leaders, went down in the fight against various political issues imposed by Ayub Khan. He criticized Ayub Khan at a conference held at Paltan Maidan On 5 June. On 24 September, he traveled to Lahore and formed the National Democratic Front along with Shahid Suhrawardy. It basically served as a general structure of the opposition.
Throughout the month of October, he visited various places of Bengal in collaboration with Shahid Suhrawardy to seek the support of the United Front. In 1963, he traveled to London to discuss with Suhrawardy, where Suhrawardy was in treatment. On 5 December this year, Suhrawardy died in Beirut.
After the death of Suhrawardy, at a meeting held at Mujib’s house on 25 January 1964, it decided to re-integrate the Awami League. On the basis of the proposal of the meeting, Sheikh Mujib elected the president of the then Awami League general secretary and Maulana Abdur Rashid Tarkabagish, one of the leading political parties of Pakistan.
On 11 March 1964, an all-party struggle council formed by which Mujib took special measures to prevent communal riots. Sheikh Mujib was one of the pioneers of the military rule of the dictator President Ayub Khan, the movement for basic democracy in the name of politics (basic democracy) and the one-unit system in the framework of Pakistan.
It was planned to concentrate power accordingly, and initiatives were taken to unify the provinces. While working with other political parties, Mujib supported Fatima Jinnah, an anti-Ayub all-party candidate. He detained two weeks before the usual election. He charged with sedition and offering offensive offers: sentenced to one year in prison. However, he released before a high court verdict.
During this time, the indifference of the military rulers angered the people of East Pakistan to meet the massacre of the military and the needs of the Bengalis. On 5 February 1966, a national conference of opposition parties held in Lahore. It was at this conference that Sheikh Mujib laid down his historic six-point claim, which practically the perfect outline of East Pakistan’s autonomy.
Sheikh Mujib proclaimed title of this claim deserves our survival. The main point of this claim the absolute autonomy of East Pakistan in a Pakistani federation run by a weak central government. The organizers of this conference rejected the claim and identified Sheikh Mujib as a separatist. Because of this he abandoned the conference and returned to East Pakistan.
Sheikh Mujib elected president of the Awami League on 1 March 1966. After this election, he conducted a nationwide campaign to gain support for the sixth point. Almost the entire country travels. During his travels, he arrested several times by police in Sylhet, Mymensingh and Dhaka.
He detained eight times in the first quarter of the year. He arrested again on 8 May this year for participating in a rally of jute factory workers in Narayanganj. A nationwide strike on 7 June called for his release. Police opened fire during the strike, which resulted in the death of approximately three people in Dhaka and Narayanganj.
In early 1968, the Pakistani government filed a case against Sheikh Mujib and 34 other Bengali military and CSP officers after detained by the army and known as the Agartala Conspiracy Case in history. It mentioned in the case that these officials, including Sheikh Mujib, had conspired to alienate East Pakistan at a meeting with the Indian government in Agartala city, Tripura, India. In this, Sheikh Mujib was named as the number one accused and was said to be the main target of this conspiracy to divide Pakistan.
All the accused kept inside the Dhaka Cantonment. Immediately after that, there was a storm of protest throughout East Pakistan. Falsifying the case, people from all walks of life came down the road demanding the release of all accused, including Sheikh Mujib. The trial of the accused started on June 19 of the same year under strict security inside the Dhaka Cantonment.
69 Mass uprising
During the trial, on January 5, 1969, the Central Student Shura Parishad submitted their eleventh claim. All of which included all of Sheikh Mujib’s six posts. Following the decision of this council, preparations for a nationwide student movement demanded to withdraw the Agartala conspiracy case. This struggle at one time turned into a mass movement.
This mass movement is known as the 1970s mass uprising. Monthly protest and resistance movement, 144 violations, curfew, police shootings. And after several casualties, the Pakistan government forced to make concessions when the movement became extreme. Then-president Ayub Khan withdrew the case after a roundtable with political leaders. With this, all the accused, including Sheikh Mujib, were released.
The Central Student Shura Parishad organized a meeting on February 23 this year in Dhaka’s Racecourse Ground (now Suhrawardy Udyan) in honor of Sheikh Mujib. Sheikh Mujib gave the title “Bangabandhu” at this conference of millions of people. The then-student leader Tofail Ahmed announced the title.
Speaking at the meeting, Sheikh Mujib expressed his full support for the eleventh point of the student council. In 1969, at an all-party conference under the aegis of Ayub Khan, Mujib appealed to the demands of his six-point alliance with other political parties and, when he rejected, left the conference. On December 5, 1969, on the anniversary of Suhrawardy’s death. Mujib declared that East Pakistan would be called “Bangladesh” from now:
“There was a time when all attempts were made to remove the word” Bangla “from the soil and the map. The existence of the word “Bangla” could not be found anywhere except in the Bay of Bengal. I declare today on behalf of Pakistan that from now on, this country will be called ‘Bangladesh’ instead of ‘East Pakistan.’ “
This announcement of Mujib spread rumors throughout the country. West Pakistani politicians and military officials began to evaluate him as a separatist leader. The emergence of Mujib’s Bengali culture and ethnic identity adds a new dimension to the debate on provincial autonomy.
According to many intellectuals, the Bengalis’ movement is a denial of bilingualism. It is through this dualism that the state of Pakistan is created. The ethnic and cultural identity of the Bengalis gives them a distinct ethnicity. Mujib was able to build public opinion in East Pakistan and, by 1970, had emerged as one of the most influential leaders of virtually the Indian subcontinent.
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