The government will honour Cultural Affairs Minister Asaduzzaman Noor, for his contributions in the cultural arena and media personality Shykh Seraj, for his contributions in agricultural journalism, with the prestigious Independence Day Award, also known as the Shadhinata Award or Shadhinata Padak. Cabinet Secretary Md Shafiul Alam told the press on Tuesday.
The cabinet had previously issued a list of 16 names who will receive the Independence Day Award this year. The list included former Speaker Humayun Rashid Chowdhury and martyr Sgt Zahurul Haque.
Popular television figure, freedom fighter and Nilphamari-2 MP Asaduzzaman Noor is well known for his work as an actor and cultural activist. He was an immensely popular figure, both on TV and stage, throughout the 1980s and 1990s.
On the other hand, Channel i Founder and Head of News, Shykh Seraj has long created and produced television programmes on Bangladesh’s agricultural issues. In the 1990s his TV programme “Mati o Manush” was extremely popular. He previously received the Ekushey Padak from the government for his contributions to agricultural journalism.
Most of the names in this year’s Independence Day Award list will receive the honour posthumously.
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Humayun Rashid Chowdhury, who was the chief of the Bangladesh mission in Delhi during the Liberation War, is receiving the award for his contributions to the Liberation War and Bangladesh’s independence.
Martyred intellectual MMA Rashidul Hassan, Bangabandhu’s friend and former MP Shankar Gobinda Chowdhury, Liberation War Organiser and former MP M Abdur Rahim, Agartala Conspiracy case suspect Bhupati Bhusan Chowdhury (Manik Chowdhury), martyr Lt Md Anwarul Azim, martyr Amanullah Mohammad Asaduzzaman, martyr Matiur Rahman Mallik, martyr Sgt Zahurul Haque and Kazi Zakir Hasan will receive the award posthumously.
Former Air Force Chief Air Vice Marshall Sultan Mahmud and former diplomat Amzadul Haque will also receive the honour in the Liberation War and Independence category.
Dr AK MD Ahsan Ali will be awarded for his contributions to medical science, Professor AK Azad Khan for contributions to social service, Selina Hossain for literature and Dr Md Abdul Mazid for Food Security.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will present the awards on March 25 at Dhaka’s Osmani Memorial Auditorium.The government has been awarding this title, the highest civilian honour presented by the Bangladesh government, since 1977.
Each person or institution who gets recognised for the award receives a 50g prize made of 18-carat gold, a replica of the prize, 300,000 taka and a certificate.