Bangladesh Armed Forces are the symbol of our pride and national unity
Dr. Muhammad Mahtab Hossain Mazed
Last November 21 was Bangladesh Armed Forces Day 2022. On this day we honor all members of the armed forces who have served and continue to serve the country in times of war and peace.
We will never be able to repay the debt of their brave sacrifice during the liberation war in 1971. Tributes to the brave soldiers and their family members and loved ones who lost their lives in the war of liberation and who suffered physical or mental damage.
51 years ago in 1971, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman's speech on 7th March, 'This time our freedom struggle, this time our freedom struggle', we made our debut as a nation. Bangladesh Armed Forces was formed on 21 November 1971 with the combination of Army, Navy and Air Force.
Responding to the call of the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the brave soldiers of the army, navy and air force launched a joint attack against the Pakistani invaders along with the freedom mad Bengalis to rid the country of the enemyA new dimension was added to the liberation war by the concerted and planned attack by the vast masses of Bengal and the Bengali members of the armed forces.
This is how our great freedom was achieved on December 16 in return for the long bloody war of 9 months and the sacrifice of three million martyrs. In the Great War of Liberation, 1 thousand 533 soldiers including 03 veterans of the Bangladesh Army were martyred and 291 soldiers were awarded titles.
In 2017, in response to a question from a member of parliament, the law minister said that the total number of members of the armed forces is two lakh four thousand 596. Among them, 1 lakh 62 thousand 125 army personnel.
25 thousand 81 members of Navy and 17 thousand 390 members of Air Force and about 21 thousand civilians are working in these three forces. Among them, there are 13 thousand 408 civilians in the army, 3 thousand 800 in the navy and 3 thousand 686 in the air force.
The day is a very turning point in the context of the liberation war. Independent-sovereign Bangladesh was created through the surrender of the Pakistani invading forces to the allied forces made up of Bangladeshi and Indian soldiers.
Since then Armed Forces Day is celebrated every year to commemorate the day. Earlier, the three forces celebrated the day differently, but since the mid-eighties, the day has been celebrated collectively through various events.
The first government of Bangladesh was formed on 17th April 1971 at Baidyanath Tala in Meherpur (now Mujibnagar). The Liberation War government was formed with Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman as the President, Syed Nazrul Islam as the Vice-President (Provisional President), and Tajuddin Ahmed as the Prime Minister.
Muhammad Ataul Ghani Osmani was made the Commander-in-Chief of the Liberation Army. Under his leadership, all the units united and fought against the enemy in the field stage of the liberation war.
Liberation War was conducted by dividing Bangladesh into 11 sectors as a strategy. A senior armed forces officer serves as Sector Commander in each sector. The mass army was formed from the general population for guerrilla warfare.
A regular force was formed with members of the Army, Navy, Air Force, EPR, Police, Ansar forces for regular combat; Which is divided into three Bgrades. These are- (1) Z force, (2) S force and (3) K force.
11 Sectors and three Brigades under Bangladesh Forces played an important role in defeating the Pakistani hyenas in a fierce battle till the formation of the Joint Force on 4 December.
The glory of Bangladesh Armed Forces is not only limited to the war of independence. The post-independence period continues to contribute equally to Bangladesh.
The glorious role of armed forces in the international world has honored Bangladesh. Working in the United Nations peacekeeping mission not only brought back peace to those countries, but also brought revolutionary changes in the socio-economic field including rehabilitation.
For which international organizations including the United Nations have praised Bangladesh Armed ForcesMany members have set a shining example of patriotism by performing the duties entrusted with their lives in maintaining the integrity of Bangladesh and the Hill Peace Agreement until the government led by national treasure Sheikh Hasina signed the Chittagong Hill Tracts in 1997.
Elite force members of RAB continue to play an important role in countering terrorism and militancy. Bangladesh is working tirelessly to protect the border under the leadership of the Border Guard.
Armed forces are still the name of people's trust and confidence in any disaster, be it natural or man-made. The armed forces members came to the front line in the rescue, relief operations and rehabilitation of people affected by cyclones and floods.
It is playing an important role in the construction of important national infrastructures including Padma Setu, National Highway, Flyover, Hatirjheel, Metrorail, Elevate Express.
Bangladesh Armed Forces is a symbol of our pride and national unity. As during the liberation war, it jumped to free the motherland, later in independent Bangladesh, it stood by the people many times during the crisis.
The highest number of Bangladeshi peacekeeping members are working with reputation in the United Nations peacekeeping mission. Army since 1988, Navy and Air Force in 1993, Police in 1989 become members of peacekeeping family. Bangladeshi peacekeepers are working with great reputation in 54 of the 68 missions of the United Nations.
The role of peacekeeping members of Bangladesh in establishing peace and developing infrastructure in war-torn Cambodia, Somalia, Namibia, Congo, Uganda, Haiti, Kosovo, Georgia, East Timor, Tajikistan etc. is very glorious.
The armed forces have gained the trust of the people by dealing with various social activities very successfully. One of his examples is working to ensure physical distance and quarantine at the field level during the pandemic corona situation.
The armed forces stood by the people on the orders of the Honorable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina during the Corona pandemic. Former army chief General Aziz Ahmed gave 16-point instructions to win the Corona war. More than seven and a half thousand members of the patriotic army stood beside the people with the instructions.
In coordination with the local administration, effective lockdown, relief assistance, free medical services, ensuring quarantine of foreign returnees, free medical services have played an important role in dealing with Corona.
Along with professional duties, Bangladesh Armed Forces have been performing the duties assigned to the country and the nation very efficiently. Voter list with photo, national identity card, machine readable passport has been created and has received great praise at home and abroad.
In natural calamities, the victims have always stood by the side of the people. The role of the armed forces during the devastating Cyclone Sidor in 2007, Aila in 2009 and most recently Amphan has been appreciated by the people.
After the victory of Bangladesh, the activities of the Ministry of Defense started at the end of December 1971 at the Bangladesh Secretariat. The country's first defense minister was the then prime minister, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Bangabandhu created a strong defense policy and armed forces. November 21 Armed Forces Day The significance of celebrating this day will be clear if we analyze the development of the armed forces and the success stories of their operations.
To uphold the significance of November 21, a collective day was decided. It is clearly seen that the spirit of liberation war is active behind the celebration of Armed Forces Day. On this day, the contribution of various military forces in the liberation war is integrated with the sacrifice of the common people.
Finally, I want to say that the father of the nation had many dreams that Bangladesh would stand tall in the world arena and become a prestigious state. So Paharsam established the Military Academy as a symbol of the prestige of the army in the beginning despite the limitations. Attended the passing out parade of the first officer batch and took the salute.
Then he said in the speech, 'You are my children, I request you, don't think of the mentality of Pakistani army, you will be my people's army. The current army chief is the son of a brave freedom fighter. And it is a matter of great pride, joy and privilege to see the son of a freedom fighter as the Chief of Army Staff.
Emperor Napoleon is one of the commanders whose names are still bright in the world arena at the beginning of the modern era. There are two powers in the world, he wrote in a letter to his son at the end of his life from the deserted island of St. Helena while in captivity.
The first is the power of consciousness, and the second is the power of arms. In the final judgment, the power of arms has always been defeated by the glorious power of consciousness. Our seventy-one is also a shining example. Therefore, Bangladesh armed forces will be rich in the spirit of liberation war, a place of endless strength - that is the expectation of the people. Congratulations and best wishes to all members of all forces on Armed Forces Day.
Author, Founder, Jatiya Rogi Kalyan Society