Maurice Wickstead reflects on the fascinating history of the Bangladeshi national airline and looks ahead to what many hope will be an exciting new era for the flag carrier.
The Road to Stability
Formerly East Pakistan, the People’s Republic of Bangladesh was established on March 26, 1971, in a dramatic climax to years of growing dissatisfaction with the main seat of government in West Pakistan (modern-day Pakistan). With the two provinces separated from each other by more than 1,000 miles (1,609km) of Indian territory, and decades of ethnic and economic discrimination practised against the Bengali population, tensions eventually boiled over into a full-scale national uprising. Attempting to suppress this widespread dissent, a major military assault was launched by Pakistani forces. Nine months of fierce fighting ended after Indian armed forces intervened resulting in defeat for Pakistan mid-way through December 1971, but not before several million people had been displaced, wounded or killed.