Zillur Rahman passes away

President Md Zillur Rahman has died at a Singapore hospital after fighting for life for 11 days.He breathed his last at the Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore at 4:47pm Bangladesh time on Wednesday. Mohammad Shafiul Alam, the Secretary to the President, told bdnews24.com’s Moinul Hoque Chowdhury.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina condoled his death and said she was sad at his demise, her Press Secretary told bdnews24.com at 5pm.
The President was 84.
Speaker Abdul Hamid, who has been discharging the President’s duties since his departure for Singapore on March 10, said he was shocked.
Before being taken to Singapore, the President was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit of the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) in Dhaka on Mar 9 with respiratory problems.
Life and career
A veteran politician who was Awami League Presidium Member, Zillur Rahman took over as the country’s 19th President on Feb 12, 2009 after being elected uncontested.
Born on Mar 9, 1929 at Bhairab Upazila in Kishoreganj, Rahman took to politics during his student days.
He played a significant role in the historic Language Movement in 1952 and the country’s Liberation War in 1971.
A Masters in History from the Dhaka University, he also holds a Law degree from the same organisation.
A lawyer by profession, Rahman won five parliamentary polls in independent Bangladesh from his Kishoreganj (Kuliarchar-Bhairab) constituency. Apart from the ninth parliamentary polls he had also won in 1973, 1986, 1996 and 2001.
He became a member of the then Provincial Assembly of erstwhile East Pakistan in 1970.
Rahman was the General Secretary of Bangladesh Awami League during the period 1972-74.
The Awami League leader had been imprisoned for four years after the assassination of the country’s founding leader and first President Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in August 1975.
He was again thrown behind bars in 1986 while being a sitting MP during the movement for restoration of democracy.
He steered the party when the Awami League President Sheikh Hasina was arrested in 2007 during the military-installed emergency government.
His wife, Ivy Rahman, then Women Affairs Secretary of Awami League, was killed in gruesome grenade attacks on an Awami League rally in Dhaka on Aug 21, 2004.
(Source: bdnews24.com)

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