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Sunday, 15 August 2010

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Bangladesh hero reinstated as student after 61 years

DHAKA, Aug 14, AFP - Bangladesh's founding leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was reinstated as a student of Dhaka University on Saturday, 61 years after he was expelled from the country's top academy, an official said.

Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who led the country to independence from Pakistan in 1971 and was assassinated 35 years ago on Sunday, was expelled from Dhaka University in 1949 for backing its low-paid officials' demand for wage hike. "We have found the expulsion order unjust and illogical. It was a grave mistake. The executive council of the university took the decision undemocratically," university chief Arefin Siddique told AFP.

Sheikh Mujib never got the chance to fight the order as he was arrested a few days later by the then Pakistan government. "By withdrawing the expulsion order, we have erased a black stain from our history. Sheikh Mujib is no longer with us but at least our decision will remove a black chapter from Dhaka University's history," Siddique said.

Sheikh Mujib became the country's first president after Bangladesh -- then East Pakistan -- waged a bloody nine-month war against Pakistan in 1971. He was assassinated along with more than 20 members of his family in a coup by army officers on August 15, 1975. His eldest daughter Sheikh Hasina who survived the assassination is now the country's prime minister after leading Sheikh Mujib's Awami League party to a landslide general election victory in December 2008. In January, five of the convicted killers of Sheikh Mujib were executed.

 

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