President M Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday paid rich tributes to Shaheed Sheikh Russel, youngest son of Father of Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, on his 58th birthday to be observed today.
On the eve of the day, they issued separate messages recalling the memories of Shaheed Sheikh Russel with due respect.
They also prayed for the eternal peace of the departed soul of martyr Sheikh Russel.
The President, in his message, said Sheikh Russel, also youngest brother of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, was born on October 18 in 1964 at the historic Bangabandhu Bhaban at Dhanmondi in the capital city Dhaka.
He said that Sheikh Russel was assassinated by the killers on August 15 in 1975.
He (Russel) was brutally killed along with most of his family members including his father Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman when he was a student of class four of University Laboratory School, the head of the state said.
Russel is alive today as a human entity in all parts of the country, he said, adding that he is a name of love for the children and teenagers of the country.
Bangabandhu loved children very much, the president said, adding that Bangabandhu knew that in order to build a happy and prosperous ‘Sonar Bangla’, the new generation had to be built as worthy citizens.
For this, it is necessary to flourish their good qualities from childhood and they (new generation) have to be nurtured with the spirit of honesty, patriotism and devotion, he said.
He hoped that all concerned will continue their sincere efforts to present the correct history of independence and the ideals of Bangabandhu among the children.
"On the auspicious occasion of the birthday of Shaheed Sheikh Russel, the youngest son of Bangabandhu, I pay my deep respects to the memory of Russel,” said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, in her message.
In order to properly celebrate the day, the government has decided to celebrate Sheikh Russel's birth anniversary as ‘Ka’ Srani-vugto Jatiya Dibosh (A-category National Day) for the first time this year, which is a very commendable initiative, she added.
Thus, 'Sheikh Russel Day' will be observed on October 18 each year to mark the birthday of Sheikh Russel, the premier said.
Bangabandhu’s favorite author was the famous philosopher and Nobel Prize winner author Bertrand Russell and that is why Bangabandhu and Bangamata had named their little boy 'Russel', she added.
The first picture that comes to mind when you hear the name Russel is the playful childhood of a smiling and lively little child, she said, adding that the child's eyes were full of joy.
A beautiful face with messy hair filling the head, that face is involved with love and affection, she recalled.
His birthday is declared as 'Sheikh Russel Day' so that every year, children and teenagers could learn about the life of the child Russel, she said.
She lauded this year’s theme of 'Sheikh Russel Day' which is 'Sheikh Russel Dipto Joyollash, Odommo Attho-Bishwash'.
Both the president and the premier wished all the success for the programmes taken for the birthday celebration of Russel.