March 26 marks the commemoration of the Independence day of Bangladesh (Bengali:স্বাধীনতা দিবস Shwadhinata Dibôsh). It commemorates the country's declaration of independence from Pakistan on late hours of 25 March 1971. The day is a memorial to the deaths of thousands of civilians who died in the subsequent Bangladesh Liberation War.

Every year, March 26 brings the most tragic reminiscence of the history’s blackest episode that heralded a nine-month bloody ordeal from the night following March 25, 1971 in achieving the long-cherished independence on December 16 the same year at the cost of a sea of blood.
President Md Zillur Rahman and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages on the eve of the Independence Day calling upon the nation to uphold the spirit of the War of Liberation to fulfil the dreams of the valiant freedom fighters, who embraced martyrdom for the cause of their beloved motherland. Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia also issued a separate message conveying her best wishes to the people and paying rich tributes to the memories of the martyrs of the War of Liberation.

The day’s programmes was heralded with a 31-gun salute early in the morning as a mark of respect to the heroic struggle of this nation, which suffered a protracted subjugation under foreign rules from time to time till achieving their coveted independence in 1971.


The day is a public holiday. The national flag flew atop all government and private buildings while all streets and important city intersections will be tastefully decorated with national and multi-coloured miniature flags and festoons. Important buildings and establishments as well as city streets and islands were illuminated with colourful lights.

The nation will also pay glowing tributes to Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and valiant sons of the soil whose supreme sacrifices freed the country from the Pakistani bondage. The National Memorial at Savar was the main venue of the celebration of the day where President Md Zillur Rahman and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina placed wreaths in the early morning as a mark of profound respect to the memories of the martyrs.

A children’s rally will be held at Bangabandhu National Stadium at 9:00 am on the occasion. The prime minister was expected to attend the rally as the chief guest where she will inspect the march-past of the children and take salute. In the afternoon, the president will host a reception for the dignitaries, noted citizens and diplomats at Bangabhaban on the occasion.

Newspapers will bring out special supplements while Bangladesh Betar and Bangladesh Television and private radio stations and television channels will air special programmes highlighting the significance of the day.

Marking the day, special prayers will be offered in all mosques, temples, churches and other places of worship across the country seeking divine blessings for the eternal peace of the departed souls of Father of the Nation, four national leaders, martyrs of the War of Liberation and all other patriotic sons of the country.

The Colombo Plan Staff College joins the government of Bangladesh in celebrating this memorable event, and conveys its warmest congratulations on its 42nd Independence anniversary.