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Dhaka Tribune

Poet Shamsur Rahman’s 13th death anniversary Saturday

His best-known poem Shadhinotatumi was composed at the height of 71’ Liberation War

Update : 16 Aug 2019, 08:24 PM

The 13th death anniversary of one of the major poets in modern Bengali literature, Shamsur Rahman, will be observed on Saturday.

A prolific writer, Shamsur produced more than sixty books of poetry collection, and is considered a key figure in Bengali literature from the latter half of the 20th century. 

He was regarded as the unofficial poet laureate of Bangladesh.

The poet passed away on August 17, 2006.

Different socio-cultural organizations including Shamsur Rahman Smriti Parishad have drawn up different programs to mark the day, a press release said on Friday.

Jatiya Kabita Parishad, Bangabandhu Sangskritik Jote, Kabi Shamsur Rahman Smriti Parishad, along with the poet’s family members will place wreaths at the his grave in Dhaka's Banani Saturday morning.

The death anniversary will also be observed at Shamsur Rahman’s ancestral home in Raipura upazila of Narsingdi.

Shamsur Rahman was born on October 23 in 1929, and spent his early days in Mahuttuliin in the capital. He took part in various socio-cultural movements, and played a vital role in critical moments of the nation.

For many years, he earned a living as the editor of the daily newspaper Dainik Bangla, and other publications. He was an outspoken secularist Muslim, and in 1999 survived an assassination attempt by Islamist extremists.

His first book of poetry, Prothom Gaan Dwityo Mrittyur Agey, was published in 1960.

Major themes in Shamsur Rahman’s poetry and writings include liberalhumanism, human relations, romanticized rebellion of youth, the emergence ofand consequentialturn of events inBangladesh and opposition to religiousfundamentalism.

His best-known poem, Shadhinota tumi (My Liberation), was composed in 1971 at the height of the War for Independence from Pakistan. 

Although Shamsur studied english literature at the University of Dhaka, he supported the campaign to retain Bengali as the official language of then East Pakistan, and his poetry reflected the natural, colloquial speech of Dhaka as well as Persian, Urdu, and English vocabulary. 

The poet earned a number of prestigious awards at home and abroad, including Bangla Academy Award in 1969, the Ekushey Padak in 1977, and the Swadhinata Dibosh Award in 1991.

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