Sheikh Hasina recalled horrors of her family’s massacre in 1975; lived secretly in Delhi

4 September, 2022 | Simran Turak

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Sheikh Hasina, the prime minister of Bangladesh, will make her first visit to India on September 5. On this eve, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina revealed that she had previously lived with ...

Sheikh Hasina, the prime minister of Bangladesh, will make her first visit to India on September 5. On this eve, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina revealed that she had previously lived with her children in Delhi’s posh Pandara Road under an assumed name in an attempt to avoid the attention of those who had assassinated her father Sheikh Mujibur Rehman.

In an emotional television interview, nearly five decades later, Hasina revealed the piercing traumas that had plagued her for years.

Hasina described the events of 1975 when she left Bangladesh to meet her nuclear scientist husband in Germany. Family members had travelled to the airport to see Hasina and her sister off on July 30, 1975.

Hasina had no idea that it would be her last meeting with her parents because it was a happy farewell.

“Because my husband was abroad, I used to live in the same house (with parents). So that day everybody was there: my father, mother, my three brothers, two newly-wedded sisters-in-law, everybody was there. So all the siblings and their spouses. They came to the airport to see us off. And we met father, mother. That was the last day, you know,” said Hasina while remembering on one of the darkest chapters in Bangladesh’s history.

On the morning of August 15, a fortnight later, Hasina got the news that she found.  The legendary statesman Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rehman, her father, had been murdered. After hearing of her father’s death, the horrors further intensified when she knew that other members of her family had been executed. 

“It was really unbelievable. Unbelievable, that any Bengali could do it. And still we didn’t know how, what really happened. Only there was a coup, and then we heard that my father was assassinated. But we didn’t know that all the family members were, you know, they were assassinated,” Hasina said.

Hasina recalled and said that India was one of the first countries to extend help,

“Mrs Indira Gandhi immediately sent information that she wanted to give us, I mean, security and shelter. So we received, especially from Marshal Tito from Yugoslavia, and Mrs Gandhi. We decided to come back here (Delhi) because we had in our mind that if we go to Delhi, from Delhi we’ll be able to go back to our country. And then we’ll be able to know how many members of family are still alive,” Hasina added.