While the whole nation on Wednesday is observing the International Mother Language Day, a group of senior citizens from Kolkata were found at the Central Shaheed Minar paying homage to the language heroes who laid their lives to protect Bangla, their mother tongue.
The visitors, all are above 60, arrived here to express their solidarity with the spirit and compassion for the language, Bangla, with many of them having their roots in Bangladesh.
While talking to UNB, Anita Shur, one of the members of the group, said, “Bangla is our language, the language of our soul.”
“We have come to show our respect towards the brave hearts who sacrificed their lives to protect the language,” she said adding that her father was from Noakhali and she has come to Bangladesh on a three- day visit along with a group of 70 people to see her father’s country and get close to the root.
Her friend, Shefali Sarker, whose root is in Barisal echoed the same sentiment.
“We’re here with a travelling group. We feel great to be part of the observance of the day which has great significance not only to Bangladeshi people but also for everyone who speaks Bangla,” Shefali said.
The International Mother Language Day has been introduced because of Bangla and it is a matter of great pride for every Bangali, said Prabin Mukherji while his friend Sudipta Benaerji said the year 1952 is an example how people can go against despotic ruler to protect their mother tongue.
Md Golam Rabbani, a staff from the tourist agency through which the group has come, said every year many people from Kolkata visit Bangladesh and also join Amar Ekushey programmes.
Dhirendra Mohon Saha, another visitor, said people all over the world speak different languages but everyone loves their mother tongue because they learn the language before any other after their birth and express their feelings till the death.
“Because of the language martyrs got a day to rediscover their mother tongue, the International Mother Language Day,” he added.
The nation is paying rich tributes to the martyrs of the 1952 historic Language Movement with the clock striking 00.01am on this day marking ‘Amar Ekushey’, the Language Martyrs Day and International Mother Language Day.unb