Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said Bangamata Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib's decision to reject Bangabandhu's release on parole changed the course of the country's political history.
"The most desirable thing regarding my mother's contributions to the political arena was that my mother had taken correct decisions at the right time. But I'm sorry to say many big leaders had failed to do it or approached the wrong decision at that time," she said.
The PM was addressing a programme marking the celebration of the 90th birth anniversary of Bangamata.
She said Bangamata had taken the right decision by turning down the proposal of Bangabandhu's release on parole for holding a roundtable discussion (in West Pakistan) after putting her life at risk.
"That correct and timely decision had forced Ayub Khan to withdraw the [Agartala conspiracy] case and it changed the course of Bangladesh's political history as well."
Hasina said Bangamata used to guide the organisation with competence and giving right decisions.
The premier joined the programme, organised by the women and children affairs ministry, from the Gono Bhaban through a virtual platform. The other participants were connected to the event from Bangladesh Shishu Academy, the Prime Minister's Office and Gopalganj.
The PM recalled that the Pakistani military dictators had tried to include Bangamata's name in the Agartala Conspiracy Case for which Pakistani intelligence agencies interrogated her several times.
"She knew it and I as her elder daughter also knew it. But she never lost her courage," the PM said.
About the historic March 7 speech of Bangabandhu, Hasina said the speech was not written and he did not rehearse it before joining the mammoth rally at the then Race Course Maidan.
"Before the speech, my mother suggested Bangabandhu to say whatever comes in his mind, and there was no need to pay heed to the points of others … to say about the history of oppression on the Bangalees."
Today, the premier said, this historic March 7 speech of Bangabandhu has made its place into the World Documentary Heritage by Unesco and it is also one of the greatest speeches of all times.
Mentioning that Bangamata had great efficiency in building struggle and movement, the PM said she played a huge role in waging massive movements in favour of the 6-point demand and against the Agartala Conspiracy Case as she knew how to mobilise public opinion.
From Bangladesh Shishu Academy premises, Awami League Presidium member Matia Chowdhury presented the keynote paper, highlighting the life and works of Bangamata.
State Minister for Women and Children Affairs Fazilatun Nessa Indira presided over the function.
A documentary was screened highlighting the life and works of Bangamata.
The PM distributed Tk 26 lakh, Tk 2,000 among each of 1,300 distressed women, thorough the electronic medium as per the enrolment of the beneficiaries provided by deputy commissioners of 64 districts.
Born on August 8 in 1930 in Gopalganj's Tungipara, Bangamata was brutally killed by the assassins of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman on the fateful night of August 15 in 1975.