The Rajshahi Cadet College is 25 km away from Rajshahi city. The college, the foundation of which was laid by the then President of Pakistan, Field Marshal Ayub Khan, on 6 November 1964, was formally inaugurated on 11 February 1966 as Ayub Cadet college, which was renamed soon after the independence of Bangladesh.
The college was initially named Ayub Cadet College. It was established in 1966 during the Pakistan period. Pakistani dictator and Field Marshal Ayub Khan named the institution by his own name and laid the foundation stone. East Pakistan Governor Munaim Khan, a collaborator of the Pakistan occupation army who was later assassinated in 1971, inaugurated the college. The name was changed after Bangladesh obtained independence, and it is now known as Rajshahi Cadet College (RCC).
Late Wing Commander (Retd) Mohammad Syed PAF was the founding Principal of the college who joined on 1 November 1965. The first Budget and Accounts Officer to join the college was the late Gholam Mustafa, the father of cadet 4/185, Prof Dr. Gholam Mujtaba. Most of the development projects including all the four dormitories were completed during his tenure.
The first Adjutant to join was Capt. Khaled Adib (Punjab) on 2 February 1968. Mr. M Saleh Uddin Sinha joined as the first teacher of the college. It was the last among four cadet colleges established during the Pakistani colonial period in East Pakistan. The first Bangalee Principal of the college (third Principal) appointed on 1 January 1970 was Mr. M. Bakiatullah. Many teachers, students and other staff of the college, including Shaheed AB Siddiqui Bir Bikram (BB), laid down their lives for the freedom of the country. Eight cadets and ten staff embraced martyrdom while four staff of the college still remain missing.
The first Bangalee Adjutant of the college (third Adjutant) was Capt. MA Rashid (FF) who joined on 23 September 1970. Capt. Rashid Bir Bikram (later Colonel; given the death penalty in the abortive coup that killed President Ziaur Rahman Bir Uttam at Chittagong in 1981) inspired cadets to join the Bangladesh independence war in 1971. The college founding day is celebrated every year on 11 February. The alumni association of the graduate students of the college is known as the Old Rajshahi Cadets Association (ORCA).
The movement, that was taking place throughout the whole country in 1971 to defend any sort of conspiracy, also influenced the then Aiyub Cadet College (present name is Rajshahi Cadet College). First Bengali College Principal M Bakiatullah, Adjutant Capt Md Abdur Rashid, some of the teachers, employees and the cadets participated actively in that movement. Taking part in the non-violent and non-cooperative movement they prepared themselves to face harder situations. They contacted with the members of ‘Chhatro Sangram Parishad’ as well as the political leaders. They also talked with the members of EPR of Yusufpur Camp. In collaboration with the political leaders and EPR members they were having secret planning of armed movement. The students of senior classes contacted with the leaders of ‘Chhatro Sangram Parishad’ of Rajshahi University and few of them secretly left the campus to take part in the procession.
The political situation of the country was becoming unstable and critical gradually. So according to the decision of higher authority Rajshahi Cadet College was closed on 9 March 71 and cadets were sent to their homes. Even after going home few Cadets joined the liberation war like shaheed Cadet S A Momin, Shaheed Cadet Abdul Mannaf, Shaheed Cadet Abdullah Al Mamun and Shaheed Cadet Md Zakaria. But few cadets of senior classes stayed in Rajshahi town instead of going home to take part in the movement directly. They got the opportunity to come into direct contact with the topmost student and political leaders and were inspired to be involved in the movement. The brave Cadets who actively participated in liberation war are enlisted in the honour board. The brave staff who actively fought liberation war in different sectors and contributed significantly to liberate our beloved motherland are also enlisted in honour board.
On the other hand, local ‘Mukti Sangram Parishad’ was formed declaring vice president of Sardah police academy Mr. Barua as president, Awami league leader Mr Azizur Rahman as secretary and Subedar Mohammad Mojibur Rahman as the commander of local freedom fighters. In that committee members of RCC participated actively keeping hand with the local students, general people, Police, Ansar, EPR and Muzahid members. To fight against the enemy few 303 Rifles were given from Cadet College. Moreover, 600/700 rifles along with ammunition were collected from Sardah police academy. Taking those arms the members of ‘Mukti Sangram Parishad’ took position in bunkers near Sardah – Rajshahi road to face the enemies.
Gradually deteriorating political condition made the liberation movement speedy on 23 March 71 and that also influenced Rajshahi Cadet College. Instead of Pakistani flag, Bangladeshi flag was hoisted in the college like Dhaka and some other places of the country. With everybody’s approval the name of this college was changed as ‘Muktarpur Cadet College’ from ‘Aiyub Cadet College’ on 23 March 71. In the evening, local people and political leaders came to the college with a large procession. All the members of RCC family except few traitors participated in that procession. College Principal Mr. Bakiatullah and Adjutant Capt Abdur Rashid were in the front of the procession. The procession not only revolved round the college but also went to the neighboring areas outside the college. In this way, being united with the local people, the members of RCC family organized a movement against Pakistan.
On the evening of 27 March, Capt Abdur Rashid accompanied by the faculty members and employees took the responsibility to carry on liberation war in the southern part of Rajshahi. Being on leave Cadet S A Momin (2/35) fought bravely in the frontal battle at Bogra. On 29 March 1971 he was caught, tortured and killed by the Pak soldiers. He was the first Cadet martyr in the history of Bangladesh. Meanwhile, Cadet Md Zakaria (5/223) being on leave was preparing to join the liberation war in Parbotipur of Dinajpur district. This message traveled fast to local Pakistani Biharis. During a black night, Biharis suddenly attacked their house and killed shaheed Cadet Zakaria including his father. Besides, shaheed Cadet Abdullah Al Mamun (5/257) fought gallantly in sector-07, Poschim Dinajpur, Naogaon. In the process of active fighting in sector-7, he embraced martyrdom in the battle field. On 30 March, College Principal M Bakiatullah went to Baharampur crossing the Padma river. There he got the responsibility to administer a refugee camp (according to another source he went to Murshidabad). Later he joined as the director of ‘Youth Camp’ to train the freedom fighters with the support of Bangladesh Mission, Calcutta.
College adjutant Capt Abdur Rashid, BP commanded the freedom fighters of Shahpur, Yusufpur and Charghat of Rajshahi, and the area covering from Mirgonj BOP to Pabna. Assistant Teacher of Bengali Mr Abu Bakar Siddique,BB; Assistant Teacher of Military Science Mr Shamsul Alam, BP; NCO Habildar Md Yusuf and workshop instructor Mr Moazzem Hossain of this college assisted him as co-fighter. Moreover, Assistant Wing Commander of 7 EPR Wing Capt Giash Uddin Chowdhury sent one company EPR force to Capt Rashid along the Natore road. Having this large company with him, Capt Rashid carried on battle very skillfully. Praiseworthy to note that main battle of Rajshahi district was carried out centering Rajshahi Cadet College.
On 11 April news came that a large convoy of Pak soldiers consisting of two hundred vehicles was coming to Rajshahi from Dhaka. To resist them defence array was formed in Baneswar, Arani and Biraldaha. Barricades were made on the road with trees. Few booby-trap and mines were set inside the barricade. Pak soldiers tried to remove the barricades and the mines exploded resulting in death and injury of a number of Pak soldiers. On the evening of 12 April Pak soldiers came forward towards Baneswar and a company of freedom fighters tried to resist them. They shot 30 inch mortar shell on the enemy forces. Both groups fought the whole night at Charghat. But freedom fighters couldn’t cope up with heavily armed Pak soldiers. In that battle Assistant Teacher Abu Bakar Siddique who was a company commander of the freedom fighters fought to death with an LMG in a trench near Charghat Bazar. His graveyard is located near Charghat thana. This patriotic and brave freedom fighter was awarded with ‘Bir Bikram’ title.
On 13 April 1971, Pak soldiers of 25 Punjab Regiment after coming through Baneshawar via Sardah Trafic Junction attacked Sardah Police Academy. Recently passed Ex-Cadet Abdul Munnaf (1/259) organized defensive battle with 30 to 40 young men near Police Academy main gate and fought against the enemies with few 303 Rifles and sacrificed life along with his two brothers. Dead bodies of him and his brothers are buried in the same graveyard near Charghat. After capturing Sardah police academy Pak soldiers started killing innocent Bangladeshis mercilessly. The Bangladeshis were captured from the surrounding areas and shot dead on the bank of the Padma. On that day more than seven hundred people were killed by the Pak soldiers. Along with other people nine staff of RCC family were killed on the bank of river Padma (mentioned in the list of honour). Besides, four Pakistani innocent cadets who were studying in this college went on leave on 9 March 71 with the closure of college. During leave in their home address of different places, they were killed by freedom fighters (also mentioned in the list of honour). In the process of liberation war four staffs were permanently missing from the college (probably they were killed by Pakistani soldiers; also enlisted in honour board). Moreover, hospital attendant Aminul and grounds man Monsur were injured. Cadet mess waiter Ketab Ali was seriously injured in his head and became crippled for ever. Observing those deadly scenes a lot of people fled away to West Bengal and became refugee. Crossing the river they went to Sheikhpara freedom fighters camp which was situated at Katlamari in Murshidabad. At that time Capt Rashid was the camp commander of that camp. He went to West Bengal when Pabna went under the control of Pak soldiers. He used to train guerrillas in Sheikhpara camp and Kazipara camp. On 19 May the Principal of Momenshahi Cadet College (presently known as Mirzapur Cadet College)Wing Commander Suleman Kayani (2nd Principal of RCC) came to Rajshahi and with his intervention mass killing was stopped in Rajshahi.
Pak soldiers took complete control of RCC and turned this holy educational institution into a ‘Concentration camp.’ They made river bank a slaughter house. Everyday a good number of Bangladeshis were brought here and tortured brutally. Later, they were shot or slaughtered on the bank of the Padma river and their dead bodies were thrown into the river.
Later Capt Abdur Rashid was promoted to Major and was made the commander of sub sector 4 of Sector no 7 (Rajshahi Area). He used to conduct battle in the southern part of Rajshahi. On 12 Nov, 71 Mr Moazzem Hossain and few other guerrillas attacked RCC campus with the order of Maj Abdur Rashid. They killed the Head Guard Mozammel who was an agent of Pak soldiers. They also took away the ID card of Mozammel and few fire arms from the campus. On 17 December 71, Major Abdur Rashid, Mr Moazzem Hossain and their fellow freedom fighters returned to a free College with utmost satisfaction of great achievement.
(Birshestho Jahangir Bhaban named after Bir Sreshtho Captain Mohiuddin Jahangir) is a modern two storied building which is the hub of the academic curriculum. The building houses the class rooms, art gallery, computer lab, physics, chemistry and Biology labs, Modern Language lab, Central Lecture Hall (CLH), departments, Vice Principal’s Office and Staff Lounge.
The auditrium, named after Sepahy Mostafa Kamal (Bir Sreshtho), has a modern stage, audio visual effects, and lighting facilities. This two storied auditorium can comfortably accommodate 650 spectators.
The college hospital is Bir Sreshtha Nur Muhammad Hospital (named after Bir Sreshtho Lance Naik Nur Mohammad Sheikh). A reasonably well equipped 18-bed hospital functions at the campus. It is looked after by the College Medical Officer, a serving Major/Captain from Army Medical Corps assisted by other medical staffs. All minor ailments are treated here but for specialized and in case of serious injury or illness the patients are referred to Rajshahi Medical College Hospital and CMH, Rajshahi and when required. To guard against epidemics, vaccinations and inoculations are carried out as and when required. The cadets are weighed, measured and medically checked up and a proper health record is maintained of all cadets. The hospital also has an isolation ward for the segregation of patients suffering from infectious diseases. In case a cadet needs an operation, all out efforts are made to inform the parents or guardians. However, if there is no time to inform them, such students are operated upon without any delay. The parents/guardians of cadets are required to submit a written permission for emergency, lifesaving surgery. In case of an emergency the authority rests with the Principal.
To preserve the memories of the past glories and the ongoing ones including the most gracious one that is the Contribution of Rajshahi Cadet College in the war of independence 1971, this museum is being set up by the Present Principal Lt. Col. AKM Ikbal Azim Psc, G+. according to the plan and policy there are three corners: Liberation War Corners with the memories of our Liberation war and the contribution of the Shaheed cadets and stuff of Rajshahi Cadet College; Next two corners are the College corner which includes college educations system, Teaching methods, syllabus design and overall infrastructure, Ex and Present Principal, Vice Principal, Adjutants, Medical Officers, Faculty Members. And the last one is Cadets Corner with the inclusion of Ex and Present cadets along with their details performances and achievements.
The College mess (named after Bir Sheshtho Matiur Rahman (military pilot)) has a large spacious dining hall, which can accommodate 300 cadets at a time and has sufficient facilities required for cooking and service of food, stocking of dry and fresh provisions. The mess functions under the supervision of a member of the teaching staff (faculty member). Cadets are also associated with the management of the mess. The committee is presided over by the Vice Principal and includes Officer In charge Cadet Mess and cadet representatives. They make every effort to provide a balanced and nutritious / extra messing if required in special cases. Every fresh supply is checked and certified by the Medical Officer before being received by the committee (which includes cadet representative). The cadets have to take five times meal in the dining hall.
The standard of Cadet Mess menu has been improved in line with dream menu prepared by cadets. At regular interval mess meeting and welfare meeting is held with cadets where Principal himself remains present to solve all their problems. Now cadets are given ‘Kachchi Biriani’ with cold drinks once a month. Also chicken roll, burger, chicken cram, samusa etc. are given regularly as snacks. They are given green coconuts, mangoes and different fruits of the college campus for eating / drinking.
Cadets are not allowed to use bare hand for taking food, use of forks and spoon is mandatory. On various occasions formal dinner is arranged (e.g. farewell of an officer or faculty member, term end dinner or a dinner in honor of a special guest visiting the college) where the officers and faculty members are invited with spouses.
It is another new inclusion to Rajshahi Cadet College which concerns the celebration of Birthdays of Class VII and Class XII Cadets during the breakfast. A greeting card with small gift like Flower, Ring from the respected Principal is given to the cadet through the duty master and OIC Cadet Mess. This is very much unique and its surprises the newly admitted Cadets and thus they feel more homely here. Musical system has been installed in Cadet Mess to listen to soft music and give them some refreshing time.
Rajshahi Cadet College Poultry firm is also another part of its. There are about 300 layers and about 200 eggs are laid by those and it also has its own fisheries project under which there are 02 big ponds where lots of fishes are cultivated. These sectors meet up the demand of both teachers and other employees. Cadet mess also gets additional support from that sector. The surplus fishes are sold and the money goes to college private fund.
The condition of dairy farm and poultry farm has been upgraded under the direct supervision of present Principal Lt. Col. AKM Ikbal Azim Psc, G+. Cows have been purchased and the production of milk ranges from 40 to 50 liters per day. With new policy, 50% of this milk is supplied to cadet mess for cadets and the rest 50% is distributed among all classes of officers, faculty members and employees. In poultry farm racks have been purchased and the number of hens has been increased. Many saplings of different varieties have been planted in the whole campus for the purpose of a forestation.
In 1972, the students decided to form a platform that would preserve the brotherly ties of the ex-cadets of RCC. OSCA (Old Sardah Cadets Association) was formed on 6 June 1972. The first constitution of OSCA/ORCA framed by the committee was adopted on 1 October 1973. The ORCA logo (with the words 'old friends') was designed by Muhammad Ehsanullah. AKM Saiful Majid was selected/elected as the founder Vice-President of the Association. Shortly thereafter as he left the country M Sadirul Islam took over the reins.
During that time and subsequent periods, the incumbent Principal of Rajshahi Cadet College was designated as the ex officio President of OSCA/ORCA. Therefore, Mr. M. Bakiatullah (late) became the first President of OSCA/ORCA.Mrinal Haque : Prominent Sculptor of Bangladesh
Tasleem Shakur : Senior Lecturer at Edge Hill University
Yawer Sayeed : Managing Director & CEO at AIMS of Bangladesh Limited
S A Momin: First Cadet martyr in Bangladesh Liberation War
Mizanur Rahman: Chairman, National Human Rights Commission Bangladesh
Gholam Mujtaba: Politician, Pakistan
Dr. Abdul Hamid: Founder of ORCA, member of the Advisory Council of Imdad-Sitara Khan Foundation.
Mohammad A Moqaddem: Director, Bangladesh Telecommunications Company Ltd(BTCL)
Ekhlas Uddin Ahmed: CTO at Banglalion Wimax
Mohamed R. : CEO at Health Consortium of Canada (HCC) Inc.
Dr. Sajid Hussain: Commandant, Bangladesh Marine Academy, first Marine Engineer to be a Commandant of Bangladesh Marine Academy since its establishment
in 1962.Md. Sufiur Rahman: Formar director,SAARC Secretariat, now ambassador of Bangladesh to the Republic of the Union of Myanmar