The 40th Homecoming Day of Awami League president and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is being observed today as she returned to the country on May 17, 1981, after a long exile.
This year, the day will be observed without any elaborate program due to the ongoing coronavirus situation.
On this day in 1981, Boarding an aircraft of the Indian Airlines, Sheikh Hasina reached the then Kurmitola Airport in Dhaka from the Indian capital of New Delhi via Kolkata at 4:30pm on that day.
Sheikh Hasina and her sister Sheikh Rehana were abroad when their father Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, founder of Bangladesh, was killed in 1975 along with other family members. Sheikh Hasina and her sister Sheikh Rehana survived as they were in Germany at the time.
Sheikh Hasina returned home from India after nearly six years in exile following the assassination of her father Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and most of his family members by a faction of army officers on 15 August 1975.
Hasina was elected president of Awami League in her absence in the party’s national council held on 14-16 February 1981.
Awami League and its associate bodies mark the day every year through various programmes except for this year because of the coronavirus outbreak.
Prime minister Sheikh Hasina has ordered her party to avoid political programmes this year, according to a post on Awami League’s website.
In a statement, Awami League’s general secretary Obaidul Quader asked the party’s activists and leaders to stay home and pray for Sheikh Hasina.
He also urged the party activists, affiliate bodies and the people to follow the prime minister’s directives in the crisis moment.