0239 GMT July 21, 2019
The 48th Independence and National Day of Bangladesh was celebrated in a ceremony in Tehran on Sunday.
Marked annually on March 26, Bangladesh’s Independence and National Day is a national holiday which commemorates the country’s declaration of independence from Pakistan in the late hours of March 25, 1971.
In Iran, however, the occasion is usually celebrated on April 8, as the actual date of Bangladesh’s Independence and National Day coincides with the Norouz holidays (March 21-April 2), celebrated by Iranians to mark the arrival of spring and the New Year.
In addition to foreign ambassadors to Iran, this years’ function was attended by the Deputy Industry, Mine and Trade Minister Mohammadreza Fayyaz.
Addressing the ceremony, Bangladesh’s Ambassador to Iran AKM Majibur Rahman Bhuiyan said that on March 26, 1971, the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman (1920-75) announced the country’s independence.
On this day, he added, the nine-month battle, known as the Bangladesh Liberation War, against the Pakistani Army ended.
“We became victorious and started a new journey toward peace and development. Both in our domestic affairs and international relations with other countries in the world, we have always adhered to the principles of peace and development.”
Within all these years, Rahman said, Bangladesh has made significant progress both in social and economic fields.
“Especially during the last decade, we managed to make significant progress and, currently, are on the verge of becoming a developing country.”
He said Bangladesh, which used to be ranked among the less developed countries, has now become a developing state, adding this has become possible under the leadership of Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and also thanks to the cooperation of the people of the country.
Lauding his country’s close cooperation and friendship with Iran, Rahman noted that, “Our relations are based on centuries-old interactions and cultural heritage and religion. Iran and Bangladesh are working together to strengthen their mutual relations and widen their cooperation in the fields of trade and commerce.”
Speaking at the same function, Fayyaz congratulated the government and people of Bangladesh on this occasion.
He described the two countries’ commonalities in terms of history, religion, culture and language as a valuable asset, adding that in addition to this, extensive interactions between the religious scholars and artists of Iran and Bangladesh have helped the two sides establish deep connections with each other.
These commonalities provide the two countries with a strong backing for further expanding their relations, the deputy minister stressed.
He said there are more than 5,000 common words in Persian and Bengali, adding this as well as the influence the Persian language and literature have had on Bangladesh’s literature is an important joint chapter in the two countries’ age-old cultural relations.
“Since the very beginning of Bangladesh’s independence, relations and regional as well as international cooperation between the two states have always been good, cordial and friendly.”
He added that Iran is interested in promoting constructive interaction with Bangladesh and expanding cooperation in political, cultural, trade and economic fields.