Mr. Speaker, on Sunday, February 24, I joined members of my community to raise funds for a monument in Toronto commemorating International Mother Language Day. UNESCO declared February 21 of each year International Mother Language Day. It is meant to represent the solidarity among languages and multiculturalism.
The monument will be a symbol of the 325 major languages, through which more than six billion people engage in dialogue, inspiring tolerance and understanding while helping to preserve culture, heritage and diversity. Toronto, a city which is one of the most multicultural in the world, will now join only Tokyo and Sydney in commemorating both the diversity and solidarity that language creates with an International Mother Language Day monument.
As the chair of the Canada-Bangladesh Parliamentary Friendship Group, I am proud to represent this initiative which was inspired by the language movement day that took place on February 21, 1952 in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh. This initiative is embraced fully by the Bangladesh community in my riding of Beaches—East York. The monument has been designed by a local Bangladeshi Canadian architect, Nazmul Jaigirdar.
I applaud the International Mother Language Day monument committee for this initiative and symbol of diversity and togetherness.