On Monday 20th June 2022 at 4:00 PM, Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) organized the 111th birth anniversary of the founder president of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) Poet Sufia Kamal at Abdul Karim Sahitya Bisharad Auditorium of Bangla Academy. About 200 people including leaders of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) Central and Dhaka Metropolitan Committees, members of National Council, representatives of civil society, family members of poet Sufia Kamal, Sayeda Kamal, officials of the organization and journalists from print and electronic media were present on the occasion.
The program started with the central committee leaders and guests giving flowers to the portrait of the poet. A documentary on the life and work of poet Sufia Kamal was then screened. After the documentary screening, music were performed by music artist Bulbul Islam and Dr. Sushmita Ahmed.
Fauzia Moslem, the president of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) presided over the event. Maleka Banu, general secretary of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP), gave the welcome speech. Professor of Mass Communication and Journalism Department of Dhaka University Mrs. Kaveri Gayen gave a speech titled ‘Sufia Kamal and Feminist Movement’. This year poet Sufia Kamal award was given to eminent Rabindra music artist Iffat Ara Dewan. Dil Afroz Begum, Finance Secretary of the organization read the introduction of the awardee. Organizing Secretary Umme Salma Begum conducted over the event.
In the welcome speech, Maleka Banu, General Secretary of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP), expressed her sympathy for the flood-affected people. She said,
“Hundred years ago poet Sufia Kamal was born in a conservative family. At that time, girls’ personal freedom, movement, education and cultural practices were very difficult. In such an unfavorable time, poet Sufia Kamal became a self-respecting, independent and non-communal person after being educated by self-education.
She emerged as a poet directly inspired by Rabindranath and Kazi Nazrul. She got in touch with the feminist philosophy of Begum Rokeya and through her various movements the women’s liberation movement continued to advance.”
In the commemorative speech, the professor of Mass Communication and Journalism department of Dhaka University, Kaveri Gayen said, Begum Rokeya spread the principal of seeing women’s emancipation as human emancipation, Begum Sufia Kamal followed that. Begum Rokeya had a feminist influence in her literary journey. She was an icon for emancipation of women’s society. She also said that after the formation of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) in 1970, Sufia Kamal became the torchbearer of the new women’s movement and struggle in this country.
Famous Rabindra music artist Effat Ara Dewan reflected on her time spent with poet Sufia Kamal when she was a youngster. She said-
“Her family is like my own family to me. It was my responsibility to take the poet Sufia Kamal to the programs of Chayanot. She was the inspiration for all my activities including music.”
In the president’s speech, Dr. Fauzia Moslem said-
“The person who is being honored today is very important to us because she was a dear one to poet Sufia Kamal. So, we are very proud to give her the award. As long as there are people, there will be people’s movements, as long as there are people’s movements, there will be women’s movements. And as long as the women’s movement exists, Sufia Kamal will also live in the hearts of people.
Poet Sufia Kamal is an icon of women’s movement. As a result of the women’s movement, many changes have taken place in the lives of women. But the most important change in women’s life is that women have become self-confident. The movements for women differ from nation to nation. As such, it is different in Bangladesh too. The women’s movement of Bangladesh is closely linked with the national liberation movement of Bangladesh.
Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) has been associated with the international aspect of this movement since its inception. Today we have a spiritual connection with the birth anniversary of poet Sufia Kamal. Women’s movement is part of social movement, as evidenced by the long journey of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP). The global women’s movement will advance the women’s movement in Bangladesh. And women’s participation in national development will further advance.” She concluded her speech by paying tribute to Poet Sufia Kamal on her birthday.