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Focus: GS-II International Relations, GS-I History, Prelims

Why in news?

  • India spoke of its unique relation with Bangladesh, in response to Pakistan raising the Kashmir issue with the Bangladeshi Prime Minister, with the Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) saying India appreciates Bangladesh’s position which regards Kashmir as an ‘internal’ matter of India.
  • The MEA also said India and Bangladesh are celebrating the centenary event ‘Mujib barsho’ this year in memory of the founder of Bangladesh Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

Mujib Year

  • The government of Bangladesh has announced the commemoration of 2020–2021 as the Mujib Year on the occasion of the centennial birth anniversary of the founding leader of the country, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
  • The UN General Assembly, UNESCO, has decided to jointly celebrate the Mujib Year with Bangladesh at the UNESCO 40th General Assembly.

Who is Sheikh Mujibur Rahman?

  • Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was a Bangladeshi politician and statesman called “Father of the Nation” in Bangladesh.
  • He is considered to be the driving force behind the independence of Bangladesh.
  • He is popularly dubbed with the title of “Bangabandhu” (“Friend of Bengal”) by the people of Bangladesh.
  • Mujib is credited as an important figure in efforts to gain political autonomy for East Pakistan and later as the central figure behind the Bangladesh Liberation Movement and the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971.
  • In 1975 a group of junior army officers invaded the presidential residence with tanks and killed Mujib, his family and personal staff.
  • Only his daughters Sheikh Hasina (who is the current Prime Minister of Bangladesh) and Sheikh Rehana escaped.

Bangladesh–India relations

  • Bangladesh and India are South Asian neighbours and Diplomatic Relations between the two countries was followed by the visit of Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1972 where there she had signed the Indo-Bangladesh Treaty of Friendship, Co-operation and Peace Relations, popularly known as the ‘Indira-Mujib Treaty of 1972, with then Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
  • The relations between the two countries have usually been friendly, although sometimes there are border disputes.
  • They are common members of SAARC, BIMSTEC, IORA and the Commonwealth.
  • The two countries share many cultural ties. In particular, Bangladesh and the east Indian state of West Bengal are Bengali-speaking.
  • In 1971, the Bangladesh Liberation War broke out between East Pakistan and West Pakistan; India intervened in December 1971 on behalf of East Pakistan and helped secure East Pakistan’s independence from Pakistan as the country of Bangladesh.

-Source: The Hindu

February 2024