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Sheikh Rehana revisits memories with Bangabandhu

17 Mar 2017, 22:42

BSS

Dhaka: Bangabandhu's younger daughter Shiekh Rehana today shared her childhood memories with her father in interactions with children who visited the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum coinciding with his 98th birthday. 

She said Bangabandhu was deprived of the simple pleasures of parenthood like taking his children to school as most of the time he had to languish in jail "when we were minor children". 

"When I was young child like you, my father used to be in jail most of the times, fighting for the country," she told the interaction organized by

Center for Research and Information (CRI) marking his 97th birth anniversary at the Bangabandhu's 32 Dhanmondi residence, now turned into a memorial museum. 

She asked children who takes them to school while most of them replied that it was their father when Bangabandhu's daughter commented "I was not lucky as you". 

"Most of the time I used to go alone, or my mother used to take me to school. In the exceptional times, when our father was not in jail, I used to urge him to take me to school," Sheikh Rehana said. 

In those times, she said, Bangabandhu used to pick her up from school on his way back from work and "that used to make me as happy as if it was Eid". "During holidays like Eid, when other children used to tell each other which shops they went with their fathers, that used to make me quite sad . . . once when he was at home during such a holiday, I forced him to take me to New Market". 

Bangabandhu took her to New Market and bought an ice cream and a new dress and on that evening "I was so happy that it felt like I was flying in space literally".

Sheikh Rehana asked children to learn more about the great personalities like Bangabandhu to learn "how to help people, to sacrifice for people and how to stand beside those who can't help themselves". 

She also asked them to study "attentively" and take care of their health. 

Rehana also recalled her days at this house in Dhanmondi Road 32 saying she was around three or four years old when her family came to this house. 

Bangabandhu's children used to play basketball and badminton with him in the house whenever he was out of jail. 

"Because he was so rarely around, and spent most of his time in jail, whenever he was home, we used to really enjoy talking to him, listening to his stories of jail, being fed by him and play with him," Sheikh Rehana said. 

She asked the children whether they know about Bangabandhu's historic speech of the March 7 and along with the children, she chanted "this time the struggle is for our emancipation, this time the struggle is for our independence". 

She asked children about Bangabandhu, such as where he was born, name of his parents. The children answered all these questions correctly. 

One of the children asked her whether her father used to beat her when she said "he did not even scold us but we could understand when our father was angry with us" while her father used to keep track of their education strictly. 

Sheikh Rehana recalled that it was her mother who used to scold them if they did anything wrong. 

"Whenever he got the chance, he tested our writing skills both in English and Bangla, and also skills in multiplications. That used to make us nervous," she recalled. 

The latest edition of the graphic novel 'Mujib 3' released last month at the Ekushey book fair was on display using banner and festoons at the Bangabadhu Memorial Museum when Rehana interacted with the children. Digital animation devises have also been used to let children know about the history of Bangabandhu as well as Bangladesh.

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