Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday said her younger brother Sheikh Kamal had made extensive contributions in the country’s culture and sports arenas.
“Sheikh Kamal had made a great contribution after the liberation which helped the country’s culture and sports reach today’s well-heeled position,” she said, taking part in a discussion and award distribution ceremony of Sheikh Kamal National Sports Council in the city.
Twelve persons and organization got the Sheikh Kamal National Sports Council Award for their outstanding contributions to sports. The programme was held at Shaheed Sheikh Kamal Auditorium in NSC Tower on the occasion of the 72nd birth anniversary of Shaheed Captain Sheikh Kamal.
Joining the function virtually from her official Ganabhaban residence in the capital, the Prime Minister said, Sheikh Kamal was actively involved in student politics and he used to take part in each of the movements and processions since he was a student of Dhaka College and he later continued it after getting admitted to the Dhaka University.
Highlighting the significant contributions he made to the country's politics, culture and sports, Sheikh Hasina said Sheikh Kamal would have done much more for the country if he remained alive.
The Prime Minister, also elder sister of Sheikh Kamal, said Kamal never used to demand anything for himself.
She said Kamal used to sing songs, play the sitar and had a band, "Spondon Shilpa Gosthi" with whom he made popular the local folk songs using modern equipments.
A total of 10 persons including sportsmen, journalist and organizers, and two organisations received the Sheikh Kamal National Sports Council Award for their outstanding contribution in the sports arena.
On behalf of the Prime Minister, Senior Secretary of the Youth and Sports Ministry Md. Akhter Hossain handed over the award s to the recipients.
Each award comprises Taka 1 lakh, a crest and a certificate.
Kazi M Salahuddin received Sheikh Kamal Lifetime Achievement Award while Ruman Shana (archery), Mahfuza Khatun Shila (swimming) and Mabia Akhter Simanta (weightlifting) got the best sportsperson award.
As emerging sportsmen, Akbar Ali (cricket), Fahad Rahman (chess) and Unnoti Khatun (football) received the award while Monjur Kader (Sheikh Jamal DC) and Kyaw Shwe Hla (karate) have been awarded as best organizers.
In best journalist category, Journalist Mohammad Quamruzzaman was given the award while Bangladesh Cricket Board got the award of best sports orginsation while Walton as partner.
State Minister of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Md. Zahid Ahsan Russel, MP, presided over the function while its Senior Secretary Md. Akhter Hossain gave the welcome address.
The Ministry of Youth and Sports arranged a discussion on the contribution of Sheikh Kamal to flourishing the sports, culture and politics at the Shaheed Sheikh Kamal Auditorium, National Sports Council, on the occasion. It also held a special prayer seeking eternal peace of the departed soul of Sheikh Kamal.
Noted sports organizer and youth and sports affairs secretary of the Awami League Harunur Rashid and Swadhin Bangla Football Team manager Tanveer Mazhar Islam Tanna recalled memories with their friend Sheikh Kamal in the function.
The Prime Minister said an attempt was made to kill Sheikh Kamal about three years after the liberation and after failing to do that, propaganda was carried out against him despite the fact that he used to lead a very simple life.
“Kamal was shot on December 16 in 1974 upon a conspiracy. Attempt was made to kill him. Various propagandas were carried out against him after he survived although he used to lead a simple life despite being a son of the President, Prime Minister and the Father of the Nation,” she added.
The premier said Sheikh Kamal had never any interest in money or assets or any business.
“Leading a simple life having an ideal for the country and love for its people was a family lesson for us. Kmala always followed the lessons,” she said.
She said that if anyone goes through the write-up of Abul Fazal in which he penned down what kind of a simple and well-behaved person Kamal was.
The Prime Minister said with an emotion-choked voice that just a few conspirators brutally assassinated the Father of the Nation along with most of his family members on August 15, 1975.
“If the August 15 (carnage) did not happen to the life of Bangalee, they would have moved around the world keeping their heads high well before,” she added.
Sheikh Hasina said Kamal was a sports organiser on one hand and had multifaceted brilliance in the cultural arena on the other, while he had an impressive role in politics as well, “Kamal had enough role in modernizing the football, cricket as well as the culture.”
She said that Sheikh Kamal also played a significant role in forming the country’s sports oreganisations, adding that the greatest contribution of Kamal in sports was to make arrangements for it in Dhanmondi, and establishing Abahani Club.
Recalling Sheikh Kamal's contribution to politics and movements, the premier said that Kamal had played an active role in popularising the six-point demand, raising movement over the Agartola Conspiracy Case, and making public opinion in favour of the Awami League candidates in the 1970’s election.
She said Kamal actively took part in the country's Liberation War in 1971 after receiving proper training.