By Jahangir Alam Akash, In the night of 21 February 1952 at the gate of Rajshahi College Hostel near F-Block, a small Martyr-Monument was built by the language-soldiers. It was at left of the entrance of the Hostel. It was known as ‚Martyr-Memorial-Tower’. It ist he first Martyr-Monument of the country! Constructed by brick, mud and sand-earth, beneath was written the famous lnes of Worl-dpoet Rabindranath Tagore, ‚ Whose message we hear from the path of sunrise, don’t be afraid, have no fear, who sacrifices his life thoroughly, he never ends, he lives ever’.
But he Muslim league hooligans with the help of police raised to the ground before the sunrise of 22 February 1952. Later on another monument was built adjacent in the similar way. That was also demolished. Now a demand has been made to re-construct this monument and to declare it on state-level as the first ‚Maryr-Monument’ of the country. For this reason, the language-soldiers, cultural-workers and the progessive circle have decided to show respect to the martyrs on Language-Martyr-Day in this place where no Monnument now exists.
The leaders of the then Language-Movements have said that, the first Monument exists no more. It must be re-constructed. In the last year (2007) on second week of February, I contacted some Language-Soldiers and assembled them in this place. I wanted to broadcast a report in a private TV-Chanel (recently-closed) and made the recordings of their memories. Those who came in the Rajshahi Govt. College Hostel, amongst them were: prominent Advocate Gholam Arif Tipu, Saiduddin Ahmed and Abul Hossain. From these political leaders of all progressive movements including that language, we came to know the history of the making of Martyr-Monument at the gate of of the then Rajshahi College Hostel. In the language movement, with Capital Dhaka, the contributions of the old traditional city, Rajshahi had also important contributions. On 21 February 1952, students in Dhaka decided to submit memorendum with the deamd fort he recognition of Bengali as state-language. Govt. proclaimed 144. Students disobeyed and made processions on the streets. Random shots were made to them by Police. Many were died and injured. In the evening came this news in Rajshahi. Around 9-00 p.m. at night (21.02.1952), a students meeting was held in Rajshahi College Hostel.
From the then representative of the students community of Rajshahi, present were: Late Dr. S.M.A. Gaffar, (now famous Advocate) Gholam Arif Tipu, Momtajuddin Ahmed (prominent dramatist and actor), Habibur Rahman (Gurudaspur, Natore), Abul Hossain (present President of Rajshahi united cultural qualitions), Saiduddin Ahmed (now physically ill), Abdur Rajjak (Ex VP of RUCSU and now prominent Advocate) and others. A Studtents Action Committe was formed. President was the then student of Rajshahi Medical College, SMA Gaffar. Jointly Secretaries were Gholam Arif Tipu and Habibur Rahman. On the memory of the the dead students in Dhaka by Police firings, in that night, a decision was taken to erect one ‚Martyr-Monument-Tower’. From different places of Rajshahi, bricks and muds were collected and throughout whole night they constructed it. The members of the students action committe were busy to collect funds for the movement. So it could not be re-constructed in those days.
On the decision of on 21 February 1952 evening held students meeting, this Monument was built. Police and Muslim League ruffians demolished it. No re-construction was followed till now. Not only the language-soldiers, but everybody wants that this Monument must be preserved and re-constructed with the state-recognition. Rajshahi leaders of language movement claim this as to bet he first Memeorial-Monument of its kind in the country. February 2008