The president said the entire Bengali nation was mesmerised on that day “by the eternal poem of the great Poet of Politics Bangabandhu”.

In this epic, lasting only 18 minutes, the great mantra of liberation of the Bengali nation was resounded, he said, adding that Bangabandhu’s lucid and dazzling speech shook the throne of the Pakistani dictator.

It was mainly in the speech of 7 March that the oppressed and persecuted Bengali nation found the desired path of freedom from exploitation, he said. For that reason the historic 7 March speech is the epic of Bengalee’s liberation, the President said.

Noting that independence is the greatest achievement of Bangalees, the president said it has not been achieved in a day.

In the long rugged path from the great Language Movement to the achievement of final victory in 1971, Bangabandhu’s immense courage, boundless sacrifice, intrepid leadership and right guidance led the nation towards the desired goal, he said.

Although Awami League bagged absolute majority in the General Election of 1970, the Pakistani ruling party started dilly-dallying the process of handing over power. Under the leadership of Bangabandhu, the non-cooperation movement was started on 1 March, 1971, he said.

In continuation of the agitation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman delivered a historic speech at the mammoth gathering in the Race Course Maidan by ignoring the blood curdling eyes of the then Pakistani ruler, he said.

In that effulgent speech, with his unique eloquence and political wisdom, he united the emotions, dreams and aspirations of the Bangalees and declared in a thunderous voice, ‘The struggle this time is the struggle for emancipation, the struggle this time is the struggle for independence’.

In continuation of that historic speech, Bangabandhu declared the long-cherished Independence of the Bengali nation on 26 March, the president said.

“We achieved our independent-sovereign Bangladesh through a nine month long armed struggle,” he said.

He said Bangabandhu’s speech on 7 March is one of the most perpetual speeches in the world. How an address can awaken the whole nation, inspire them to participate in the war of liberation for independence, the historic 7 March Speech by Bangabandhu is its unique example.

The president said Bangabandhu had a spiritual bond with the people of Bengal. So in his speech, Bangabandhu essentially portrayed the inner words of people’s heart, he said.

The president said UNESCO has recognised the 7 March Speech of Bangabandhu as part of the World’s Documentary Heritage’ and included it in the ‘Memory of the World International Register’ on 30 October 2017.

“This is our great achievement as Bengali nation. The historic address of Bangabandhu on 7 March will be an eternal source of inspiration not only for us but also for freedom-loving people around the world,” he said.

The president said Bangabandhu’s lifetime dream was to turn the independent-sovereign Bangladesh into a happy and prosperous ‘Golden Bangla’.

“We must continue our efforts to fulfil that dream of our great leader. After going through many ups and downs, Bangladesh is now a developing country,” he said.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has undertaken ‘Vision 2041’ to make Bangladesh a developed, prosperous and smart country by 2041.

He called upon all to contribute from their own positions irrespective of party affiliations in implementing these programmes.