B'desh wants Pak to apologise for 1971 war
The genocide carried out by Pakistan in Bangladesh in 1971 has found echoes at the World Social Forum (WSF) being held in the Pakistani city of Karachi.
At a meeting arranged on the occasion of the National Day of Bangladesh on March 26, participants from Bangladesh demanded an apology from the Pakistan government for their past deeds and return of assets, the Bangladesh Observer reported.
On March 26, 1971, Bangladesh - then known as East Pakistan - declared independence following a brutal military crackdown ordered by the Pakistani government. After nine months of bloody conflict, Bangladesh declared victory on December 16, 1971.
The Bangladeshi activists who took part in the meeting held a rally on the WSF premises chanting slogans in support of their claims and demanding a greater unity among the South Asian countries.
The paper said other participants at the meeting argued that the incidents in 1971 were the result of a fight waged by the then Pakistani rulers against the innocent people of Bangladesh and that people of Pakistan had no hands in it.
They criticised the Pakistani government for failing to give the due share of national assets to the Bangladesh government demanding repatriation of all assets of the pre-independence days.
The speakers demanded that the remains of Flight Lieutenant Motiur Rahman, a liberation hero of Bangladesh, should be sent home.
Failing this, they said the grave, which is in Karachi, should be maintained in good condition and opened to Bangladeshi visitors.
They also demanded that the Pakistan government should take back all the 300,000-plus stranded Pakistanis living in Dhaka.
They also demanded equal citizenship rights for the migrant Bangladeshi workers living in Pakistan.