March 6, 1971: Yahya Khan announces that the National Assembly would meet on March 25, 1971

Yahya Khan went on the air and announced March 25 as the new data for the national assembly meeting.Whoever heard Yahya khan’s broadcast that day will never forget the experience. The manner in which the ‘gesture’ was made and the tone of voice left no doubt whatsoever of his real intentions. He had not a single word to assuage outraged Bangali sentiment, nor did he make the slightest effort at reconciliation. Instead, he heaped invective on Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the Awami League.

On three separate occasions between March 3 and March 24 Bangali members of armed forces approached Sheikh Mujibur Rahman for guidance because they had no illusions about what was coming.

In the evening Bangabandhu was engaged in an emergency meeting of the party’s working committee to consider the President’s new date for the national assembly meeting. The Awami Leaguers also had to decide whether or not to make the declaration of independence that the people were clamoring for. The pressures for this were extreme. On the one side were the powerful student groups insisting to announce the break with the West Pakistan, with them also were the street crowds.

The discussions had taken up the whole night but the Awami League was still undecided. Finally Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman decided to speak out about this issue – tomorrow March 7, 1971 – on the Racecourse Ground.

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