Hundreds of agitating students and general people witnessed the event at the university
March 2, 1971 is a historic day as on this day the very first flag of Bangladesh (the then East Pakistan) was hoisted, sending a message to the world that Bengalis were striving for independent nationhood.
A historic student rally was held at Bottola on the Dhaka University (DU) campus where the flag, with Bangladesh’s map in the center of a red circle against a green background, was hoisted on the rooftop of the Arts Faculty.
Hundreds of agitating students and general people cheered the raising of the flag.
Youths led by the then vice president of the DU Students’ Union ASM Abdur Rob hoisted the flag in the presence of such firebrand student leaders as Shahjahan Siraj, Abdul Quddus Makhan and Nur-e-Alam Siddiqui.
At the rally, students expressed solidarity with the movement for liberation and their determination to undergo any sacrifice to continue the struggle against the Pakistani rulers.
They took an oath before the meeting started, where the student leaders delivered fiery speeches on continuing the battle for freedom under the leadership of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
Later, a procession, punctuated by slogans calling for freedom, was brought out. It ended at the Baitul Mukarram Mosque premises.
In the evening, Pakistani flags were pulled down and the new flag was hoisted at the DU and secretariat premises. The Pakistani rulers suddenly imposed a curfew, which the people opposed right away and took to the streets.
They chanted the historic slogans--“Shyandho ain mani na,” “Joy Bangla,” “Bir Bangali ostro dhoro, Bangladesh swadhin koro,” etc.
They put up barricades on the roads, reacting to which the military opened fire on the agitators at the DIT intersection, in front of the Morning News newspaper office around 9:30pm. Gunshots were also fired targeting a procession heading towards the Governor's House.
Protesting the shootings, Bangabandhu announced a province-wide hartal (strike) from 6am to 2pm for four straight days beginning March 3.