Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will hand over the "Ekushey Padak 2023" to 19 eminent individuals and two organisations on Monday on the occasion of the Amar Ekushey and the International Mother Language Day.
The head of the government will hand over the Ekushey Padak, the second-highest civilian award in Bangladesh, at a programme at Osmani Memorial Auditorium in Dhaka at 11:00 am, reports BSS.
President M Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday issued separate messages on the occasion of awarding the Ekushey Padak.
In the separate messages, both the president and the prime minister wished success of the event.
The nation is set to observe the "Amar Ekushey and the International Mother Language Day" on February 21 to pay glowing tributes to the Language Movement martyrs who made supreme sacrifice for the cause of the mother language on this day in 1952.
President M Abdul Hamid, in his message, said the great language movement is an unforgettable event in the national history and the seed of Bangladesh's independence was sown through the language movement.
He recalled with respect the contribution of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who led the All Party Council for Struggle on State Language formed in 1948 to demand mother tongue.
President Hamid said the spirit of Amar Ekushey (1952's Language Movement) is an eternal inspiration for world people of different mother tongues to protect their respective mother languages.
The head of the state paid profound respect to the memory of the immortal martyrs of the country's long struggle for independence, including the country's Great Language Movement of February 21, 1952.
"The United Nations has declared February 21 as International Mother Language Day and our mother language day is now become a festival of honouring mother languages of all," he added.
In her message, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina paid her deep respect to the memory of all the martyrs who sacrificed their lives to protect and uphold the dignity of the mother language 'Bangla' on February 21, 1952.
With utmost respect, the premier remembered all language movement veterans, including the greatest Bengali of all time, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who led the fight for the dignity of the Bengali language.
As the martyrs of Ekushey are the illustrious sons of the nation, the recipients of the prestigious Ekushey padak in different categories are also pride of the nation, the premier said, adding that award-prize inspires people in their way of life although these personalities do not work for such awards or prizes.
With the spirit of Amar Ekushey, we are awarding the prestigious Ekushey Padak to all those who have made great contributions in various fields in the development of art, literature, science and culture and building an enlightened society in the country, she added.
Noting that during the tenure of the Awami League government, the amount of money given to the award recipients has been increased several times, she said in the last 2020, it has been increased to Taka four lakh each.
The PM mentioned that a total of 544 distinguished individuals and reputed institutions were awarded 'Ekushey Padak' in recognition of their contributions in various fields in national life.
The young generation following the path of this year's Ekushey Padak awardees and institutions will play an active role in building the 'Sonar Bangla' (golden Bangladesh) envisioned by the Father of the Nation and enrich our language and literature by practicing Bengali's glorious history, tradition, art, literature and culture in days to come.
Earlier on February 12, the government announced the names of 19 eminent citizens and two organisations for the "Ekushey Padak-2023" for their outstanding contributions in respective fields.
This year three persons got the award in the Language Movement category, one in the Liberation War, eight in Shilpakala (acting, music, recitation, arts and painting), two in politics, one person and one institution in education, one person and one institution in social service and one each in journalism, research, and language and literature.
Khaleda Manzur-e Khuda, heroic freedom fighter AKM Shamsul Haque (posthumously) and Haji Mohammad Majibur Rahman have been named for the award in the Language Movement category.
Masud Ali Khan and Shimul Yusuf will receive the award in the category of Shilpakala (acting) while Monoranjan Ghoshal, Gazi Abdul Hakim and Fazal-e-Khuda (posthumously) have been named for the award in the category of Shilpakala (music), Jayanto Chattopadhyay in Shilpakala (recitation) category, Nawazish Ali Khan for Shilpakala, and Kanak Chanpa Chakma for Shilpakala (painting).
Momtaz Uddin (posthumously) will get the award in the Liberation War category, Md Shah Alamgir (posthumously) in journalism, Dr Md Abdul Majid in research, Professor Dr Mazharul Islam (posthumously) in education, Saidul Haque in social service, Advocate Manjurul Islam (posthumously) and Akhter Uddin Mia (posthumously) in politics, and Dr Maniruzzaman in language and literature.
Bangladesh National Museum will get the award in the category of education while Bidyanondo Foundation in social service.
The 'Ekushey Padak' was introduced in memory of the martyrs of the Language Movement of 1952.
The cultural affairs ministry confers the award with a gold medal, a certificate of honour and cash.
Last year, 24 eminent personalities were given the prestigious Ekushey Padak.