Columbia Chronologies of Asian History and Culture

By John S. Bowman | Go to book overview
Save to active project

Bangladesh

The early history of Bangladesh falls within the chronology of India, where until 1947 it is effectively the easternmost province, known as East Bengal. Upon the partition of India and Pakistan in that year, Islamic East Bengal becomes the eastern wing of Pakistan. (The East Pakistan period [1947–1971] is dealt with in the chapter on Pakistan, and includes the years of struggle for independence.)

East Pakistan achieves independence as Bangladesh (Land of the Bengalis) only after a civil war and the intervention of India in 1971. The country's first prime minister, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, almost immediately imposes martial law, and the political history of Bangladesh is an unhappy narrative of dictatorship punctuated by coups, assassinations, and brief experiments in constitutional democracy. Underneath it all lies a country constantly struggling with the relentless pressures of its natural environment, its population, and its poverty.

December 1970: Elections are held throughout Pakistan to choose an assembly that will write a new constitution. The Awami League, the party based in East Pakistan and led by Sheik Mujibar Rahman, wins a majority and calls for self-government of East Pakistan.

The road to you is blocked By temples and mosques.

I hear your call, my lord, But I cannot advance— Masters and teachers bar my way….

Spiritual song by Madan Baul (19th century)

March 1, 1971: Determined not to let the Awami League have its way, Pakistan's president Yahya Khan postpones the first meeting of the newly elected assembly. Demonstrations begin to unsettle East Pakistan.

March 25, 1971: Yahya Khan declares an emergency in East Pakistan, bans the Awami League, and arrests Rahman. Pakistan's army attacks demonstrating Bengali separatists in East Pakistan. Civil war breaks out.

March 26, 1971: A group of Bangladeshi nationalists make a covert radio broadcast in East Pakistan calling for independence from Pakistan. This event will be observed as Bangladesh's Independence Day.

April 17, 1971: Nationalist leaders in East Pak

-379-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Columbia Chronologies of Asian History and Culture
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 751

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?