Bangladeshis at home and abroad celebrated the country's 49th Victory Day paying deep homage to the martyrs who laid down their lives for the country during the Liberation War.
Bangladesh was born as an independent country on this day in 1971 when the Pakistani occupation forces surrendered after a nine-month bloody war in which three million people sacrificed their lives and hundreds of thousands of women were dishonoured.
Along with the government, socio-political, educational and cultural institutions and organisations celebrated the day with elaborate programmes.
The day’s programmes began with the 31-gun salute.
President Abdul Hamid and prime minister Sheikh Hasina paid tributes to the martyrs of the Liberation War by placing wreaths at the National Mausoleum in Savar with the rise of the sun.
They were followed by freedom fighters and their family members, foreign diplomats, leaders of Awami League and different political and social organisations and people from all walks of life.
The national flag was hoisted atop government, semi-government, autonomous and private offices across the country.
The day was a public holiday. National dailies brought out special supplements on the occasion.
State-owned and private television channels and radios are airing month-long special programmes highlighting the significance of the Liberation War.
As part of the day’s programmes, a colourful parade was held at the National Parade Square at Sher-e-Banglanagar where president Abdul Hamid took salute and inspected the parade as the chief guest while prime minister Sheikh Hasina was also present.
Special prayers were offered at mosques, temples, churches, pagodas and other places of worships seeking divine blessings for the peace and progress of the country.
The president accorded a reception to freedom fighters at Bangabhaban in the afternoon.
Bangladesh missions abroad organised discussions, cultural functions and receptions.
Receptions were accorded to freedom fighters and family members of martyrs at city, district and upazila levels.
Destitute children were allowed to visit children parks in the capital on the day for free. Improved diets were served in jails, hospitals, and orphanages across the country.