Family

At the age of twenty-two Sheikh Mujib married his paternal cousin Begum Fazilatunnesa, fondly called Renu by the family. Their marriage was actually fixed when Sheikh Mujib was 13 years old and Begum Fazilatunnesa was 3. The Begum had just lost her dad so her (and Sheikh Mujib's) dada, Sheikh Abdul Hamid, had commanded his son Sheikh Lutfar Rahman to marry his son Sheikh Mujib to her. However, it was 9 years later, in 1942, when Sheikh Mujib was 22 years old and Begum Fazilatunnesa was 12 years old that the marriage ceremony was held publicly with the usual rituals. The pair subsequently became the happy parents of two daughters, Sheikh Hasina and Sheikh Rehana, and three sons, Sheikh Kamal, Sheikh Jamal and Sheikh Russel.

Sheikh Hasina would grow up to become the Prime Minister of Bangladesh.

My father grew up rural - amid rivers, trees, birdsong. He flourished in the free atmosphere inspired by his grandparents. He swam in the river, played in the fields, bathed in the rains, caught fish and watched out for birds' nests. He was lanky, yet played football. He liked to eat plain rice, fish, vegetables, milk, bananas and sweets. His care and concern for classmates, friends and others was well-known. He gave away his tiffin to the hungry, clothes to the naked, books to the needy and other personal belongings to the poor. One day, my grandfather told me, he gave his clothes to a poor boy and came home in his shawl.

Sheikh Hasina, eldest child of Sheikh Mujib and Prime Minister of Bangladesh

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