Report of public address on March 24, 1971 at Dacca


Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Chief of the Awami League, today warned against any attempt to impose a decision on the people of "Bangla Desh" and said that "we would not tolerate it".


"Our demands are just and clear and they have to be accepted", he said.


Addressing a huge gathering which assembled in front of his house, Sheikh Mujib declared that the people were awake and were united like one man.


No power on earth could suppress their demands, he said. If anyone showed his "red eyes" to suppress the people's rights we would not tolerate them, he said.


Sheikh Mujib said: "We want a peaceful settlement but if anyone did not want it (peaceful settlement) you would not be able to suppress us. I hope nobody will try that," he added.


Sheikh Mujib said the movement would continue till the goal was achieved. Until the people of "Bangla Desh" are emancipated and their rights achieved the struggle would continue, he said.


Communal Riot Warning


He, however, urged the people to maintain discipline in their struggle. He warned that a section of people were trying to sabotage the movement by starting communal riots. They have many things. They want to start violence on the hope of sabotaging the movement to get a share of the cake as divided by the monkeys, he said. He regretted to say that such an attempt was made at Saidpur.


He warned these people that such efforts would fail because the people of "Bangla Desh" were united today. "Whatever conspiracy you indulge in you will not succeed in suppressing the demands of the people," he said.


Sheikh Mujib said: "We would not bow our heads to any force. We will free the people of Bangla Desh". He declared that nobody could "purchase my head". "Others might betray the blood of the martyrs but I cannot," he said and added that the people would not allow the blood of martyrs to go waste.


He, therefore, urged the people to keep up the movement while they remain prepared for any eventuality. "I do not know whether I shall live to give the order for the intensified struggle. You must continue your struggle to realise your rights," he said.


He told the people not to tolerate the force and oppression and urged them to resist them.

No less than two scores of procession of men, women and children con­verged at the house of Sheikh Mujib to express their solidarity in the people's movement and confidence in the leadership of the Sheikh.


Amidst thunderous applause he declared that he was ever ready to Jace bullets but he would never allow the 75 million Bengalees to remain slaves.


Numerous souls were lost in cyclones, tidal bores and other natural calamities. We want to put to an end these senseless deaths of the Bengalees, he added.


Sheikh Sahib recounted the exploitation of East Pakistan by the vested interests and asserted that " Bengalees were no more ready to tolerate any injustice." "Either we shall live like men or we shall go out of existence fighting for our cause," he emphasised.

He made an impassionate appeal to the people to remain prepared for the eventual struggle and said, "In case I cannot give you orders, carry on the struggle with greater determination to gave the 7 million Bengalees from being slaves."


(THE DAWN, Karachi--March 25, 1971)



Source: Bangladesh Documents, vol – I, p.266-267