Sonia pays tributes to 1971 martyrs, Bangabandhu

India's Congress party president Sonia Gandhi is attending the autism conference

DHAKA: Congress Party president Sonia Gandhi today paid rich tributes to martyrs of the 1971 ‘Liberation War’ and Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the founding leader of Bangladesh, during her visit to the National Memorial here.

Sonia, who arrived here yesterday to take part in an international meet on autism, will receive Bangladesh’s highest state honor awarded posthumously to her mother-in-law, former Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, for her outstanding contribution to the country’s independence struggle.

The UPA chairperson placed wreaths at the National Memorial early in the morning and stood in silence for some time as a mark of respect to the memory of the 1971 martyrs.

She also planted a sapling of `Bokul’ tree on the memorial premises.

The Indian leader then signed the visitors’ book at the memorial where she was accompanied by Captain (rtd) AB Tajul Islam, the state minister for liberation war affairs ministry.

Sonia Gandhi also visited the Bangabandhu Memorial Museum, the historic residence of Sheikh Mujibur, where she placed floral wreaths.

“The Bangalee nation and the people of the world will remember him (Bangabandhu) forever for his role,” an official accompanying the Indian leader quoted her as saying during her 20-minute visit to the museum.

“She was visibly moved witnessing the place where Bangabandhu was gunned down and a picture of her assassinated mother in law with Bangladesh’s founding father,” the official told PTI.

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