The High Commission of Bangladesh in Canada celebrated the 52nd Independence and National Day Reception 2023 with great enthusiasm, festivity, and patriotic spirit at Fairmont Chateau Laurier, Rideau Street, Ottawa, Canada on 2 May 2023.
Following the invitation of this Mission, the Hon’ble Robert Oliphant, Parliamentary Secretary to the Hon’ble Foreign Minister of Canada attended the event as the Chief Guest on behalf of the Government of Canada. The event was also attended by more than 150 guests, including, Federal Members of Parliament, Senators, and Heads of diplomatic missions based in Ottawa. Besides, leading community members and expatriate Bangladeshis in Canada were also present at the celebration.
The program commenced with the playing of the national anthems of Bangladesh followed by Canada. All the invited guests paid tribute when the National anthems of both the countries were played. After this, H.E. Dr. Khalilur Rahman, the High Commissioner delivered his speech on this special occasion. In his remarks, he greeted the invited guests and paid tribute to the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, and the three million martyrs who sacrificed their lives, as well as the two hundred thousand women who lost their honour during the war of liberation in 1971. H.E. the High Commissioner said, “Ever since the diplomatic relations were established in 1972, the bilateral relations between the two countries have transformed into a robust partnership and Canada has its due share of Bangladesh’s impressive economic and social development, especially under the Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’.
High Commissioner said that the brutal assassination of the Father of Nation along with his 18 family members, including children and women on 15 August 1975, took Bangladesh down a path of fundamentalism and terrorism and it is only when the current Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina came back to power, that Bangladesh regained its path of democracy, secularism, stability, peace, and prosperity.
Date: 02 May 2023
High Commissioner also highlighted the need for meaningful dialogue with our partners, including Canada, for the deportation of convicted killers, perpetrators of genocide, and the flagrant violators of human rights. He urged our friends to make caution and to be not misled by misinformation and fabricated social media propaganda that contribute to violent extremism and radicalization in Bangladesh. He sought continuing support and partnership with our global partners, including Canada, to keep Bangladesh on the path of secularism. It is important for the global community to strengthen the hands of secular forces in Bangladesh.
Hon’ble Robert Oliphant emphasized that the bilateral relationship between Canada and Bangladesh is incredibly important for Canada, as it evolved primarily from Canada’s support during our war of liberation and subsequent recognition of Bangladesh. He highly lauded the successful graduation of Bangladesh from LDC category in 2026 and the ongoing development of Bangladesh under the leadership of Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. He also expressed gratitude to Bangladesh for hosting 1.3 million Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals (FDMN) and vowed to work together for their safe, sustainable, and dignified repatriation to their homeland in Myanmar by ensuring accountability and justice through international mechanisms, including the International Court of Justice (ICJ). Lastly, he expressed his felicitation and congratulations on the 52nd anniversary of Bangladesh’s independence and national day and concluded his speech. It is to be mentioned here that a documentary on Bangabandhu and Bangladesh was screened during the event. Finally, a lunch was hosted in honor of the invited guests.
The celebration of Independence and National Day was organized on 2 May 2023 instead of 26 March 2023 due to the holy month of Ramadan.
A few still photographs of the event are attached herewith for necessary media coverage.