Online Desk: The Armed Forces Day-2022 was celebrated today amid festivity and enthusiasm, marking the founding anniversary of the forces comprising army, navy and air force.
On this day during the War of Liberation in 1971, the Bangladesh Armed Forces came into being and launched an all-out attack on the Pakistani occupation forces which ultimately brought independence for Bangladesh.
Since the country’s independence, this historic day is observed as the Armed Forces Day every year.
The day’s programme began with offering special prayers after Fajr prayers at all mosques in all the cantonments and naval and air force bases throughout the country in the morning, seeking divine blessings for the well-being and prosperity of the nation and progress of the armed forces.
On the occasion, President M Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages on Sunday.
The President, also the Supreme Commander of Armed Forces, and the Prime Minister, also the Defence Minister, placed wreaths at the altar of Shikha Anirban (the Eternal Flame) at Dhaka Cantonment in the morning, paying homage to the martyred armed forces’ members who laid down their lives in the Liberation War in 1971.
A smartly turned out contingent of the army, navy and air force gave separate guard of honour to the President and the Prime Minister at that time, while bugle played the last post.
After laying the wreaths, President M Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina signed the visitors’ book kept at the Shikha Anirban.
Earlier on arrival of the President and the premier at Shikha Anirban, chiefs of the three services and the Principal Staff Officer (PSO) of the Armed Forces Division (AFD) received them.
Besides, Army Chief General SM Shafiuddin Ahmed, Navy Chief Admiral M Shaheen Iqbal and Air Force Chief Air Chief Marshal Shaikh Abdul Hannan also placed wreaths at the Shikha Anirban on behalf of their respective forces.
After the wreath-placing ceremony, the Prime Minister went to the AFD where PM’s Security Affairs Adviser, Principal Staff Officer (PSO) and director generals of the AFD received her while chiefs of the three services paid a courtesy call on the Prime Minister there.
Later, the Prime Minister accorded a reception to family members of the Bir Shreshthas and a fixed number of gallantry award holder 1971 veterans and their families at Army Multipurpose Complex in Dhaka Cantonment and handed over honorary cheques and gift items to them.
She also distributed the peace-time award for 2021-22 among four army, two navy and two air force personnel at the function.
About 101 gallantry award holder freedom fighters and their family members, including relatives of the seven Bir Shreshthas, joined the reception.
Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Haque, PM’s Security Affairs Adviser Major General (retd) Tarique Ahmed Siddique, chiefs of the three services, Principal Staff Officer (PSO) of the AFD and senior military and civil officials were present at the ceremony.
Later, the Prime Minister joined a tea party with the freedom fighters and their family members.
After the reception programme, chiefs of the three services paid a courtesy call on the President at the Bangabhaban here.
Marking the day, chiefs of the three services accorded separate receptions to gallantry award holder freedom fighters from their respective forces and their family members.
Besides, a reception programme was organized on behalf of the premier at Senakunja in the cantonment at 4pm while Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina joined the function in person.
The state-run Bangladesh Television (BTV) live telecasted the function.
Various programmes were also chalked out at different army garrisons, naval ships, installations and bases of the air force across the country outside Dhaka to celebrate the day.
Receptions were also accorded at cantonment or base at Barishal, Cox’s Bazar, Bogura, Sylhet, Ghatail, Chattogram, Jashore, Rangpur and Khulna under the regional headquarters.
Bangladesh Navy kept its ships open for all from 2 pm until the sun sets today at different naval berths, rocket ghats and BIWTA ghats in Dhaka, Khulna, Chandpur, Barishal and Chattogram for public on the occasion of the Armed Forces Day.
Earlier, a ‘Bishesh Anirban’ programme illustrating the significance of the day was telecast by BTV on Sunday after the news of 8 pm while the programme was supposed to be telecast later by other television channels gradually.
Bangladesh Betar will broadcast a programme “Bishesh Durber” at 7.30pm today. National dailies published special supplements highlighting the significance of the day.
The educational institutions run by armed forces organized essay and painting competitions marking the day.