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Gallery: Community marks struggle for Bangladeshi independence

PUBLISHED: 06:00 25 February 2013 | UPDATED: 08:41 25 February 2013

Bangladeshi Mother Langauge Day Celebrations at Suffolk New College
Laying of Flowers by Ipswich Mayor Mary Blake

Bangladeshi Mother Langauge Day Celebrations at Suffolk New College Laying of Flowers by Ipswich Mayor Mary Blake

Archant

A CRUCIAL – and tragic – turning point in the battle for Bangladeshi independence has been marked at a special celebration at Suffolk New College.

The Suffolk Bangladeshi Society held the county’s first International Mother Language Day celebration yesterday, attracting civic leaders and members of the Bangladeshi community from across the region.

The event commemorated the struggle for the recognition of the Bangla language – spoken by the majority of the Bangladeshi population.

After the partition of India in 1948, a single state of Pakistan – split between west and east – was formed with the dominant west decreeing that Urdu should be the official language. This was opposed in the east, and during a protest in 1952 many students were killed during a march in Dhaka.

Their deaths sparked a movement which eventually led to the split in Pakistan in 1971 and the establishment of the new state of Bangladesh. In 2008 the United Nations designated February 21 as International Mother Language Day.

At the Ipswich ceremony wreaths were laid by mayor Mary Blake and other civic leaders including Ipswich Star editor Terry Hunt.

The chairman of the Suffolk Bangladesh Society, Manik Miah, said: “This is a very important day for us and we are delighted to share it with the wider community.”

Drivers have reported delays this morning in Bury St Edmunds after roadworks – which are planned to last for 16 weeks – began in the town.

Witham MP Priti Patel faced questions over the prospect of a possible Cabinet return this morning in her first broadcast interview since quitting over her secret meetings with senior Israeli figures last year.

This is the last week that market traders will operate from Ipswich’s Cornhill for at least a year as work to rebuild the town centre is due to start.

Young apprentices in Haverhill have been honoured at an awards ceremony held to celebrate their successes and achievements.

Drivers are being warned they could face delays as roadworks begin at one of Ipswich’s busiest junctions this morning.

The government has still not agreed a deal to end its £50m commitment for the regional fire control “white elephant” in Cambridgeshire – nearly two years after negotiations started.

A police helicopter was involved in a search which continues this morning for a motorist involved in a single-vehicle crash in Suffolk last night.

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