Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday paid homage to the martyrs of the 1971 Bangladesh War of Independence against Pakistan and said they devoted their life towards “preserving righteousness and resisting injustice”. Army bugles played the Last Post as the Bangladesh national flag was hoisted at half-mast in a ceremonial manner as Modi stood in solemn silence in front of the National Martyr’s memorial at Savar, about 35 km north-west of Dhaka, after placing a wreath.
Addressing an event on the National Day Programme of Bangladesh, he spoke of bilateral ties and his own freedom struggle.
Top highlights from his address:
- “I pay my respects to Bangabandhu. He gave his life for the people of Bangladesh. I am happy and honored that India could bestow the Gandhi Award on him. I pay my respects to the Indian Army who fought for the freedom for Bangladesh. They played a huge role in Bangladesh’s freedom struggle,” said PM Modi.
- “We will not forget those who gave their lives for Bangladesh. Bangabandhu Mujibur Rehman was a ray of hope. He made sure that no country could enslave Bangladesh. The efforts of PM Indira Gandhi in 1971 are also well known,” he said.
- “It is a happy coincidence that the 50 years of independence of Bangladesh and 75 years of independence of India have come together,” he said.
- “We are happy that Made In India vaccines are being used in Bangladesh,” the prime minister said.
- “The next 25 years are crucial for both India and Bangladesh. Our heritage is shared, our growth is shared, our targets and opportunities are also shared. While there are similar opportunities in trade and industry, there are similar challenges in terrorism,” PM Modi said.