Saturday, June 28, 2008

1971 : Indo-Pak war?

Going through a news item regarding Field Marshal Manekshaw's demise in The New Age today, courtesy to Press Trust of India, New Delhi, I've been startled observing how the Indian press thinks of our 9-month long struggle for independence in 1971. The news started with

A legendary soldier and a national hero, Field Marshal Sam Hormusji Framji Jamshedji Manekshaw crafted India's greatest military victory in the 1971 Indo-Pak war that led to the emergence of Bangladesh.

What does that imply? Bloody birth of Bangladesh was a by-product of that so-called Indo-Pak war? With this statement, the sacrifice of our freedom fighters and martyrs has been brazenly belittled. It's downright despicable!

India's help in our war of liberation has always been aptly appreciated by us except some anti-India freaks. We're indebted to India for its help throughout our liberation war. But exaggeration of their contribution on the part of the Indian press is reprehensible. A war waged by Bangladeshis and fought fiercely in which Indian Force helped us cannot be dubbed as Indo-Pak war in any way.

It's liberation war of Bangladesh, NOT 1971 Indo-Pak war.

[ A moderated version of this post was published as a letter in The Daily Star on July 06, 2008 and in New Age on July 02, 2008. ]

Friday, June 27, 2008

Simply Outrageous!

The decision taken recently by CTG to prefer expatriates' wards in college admission is simply outrageous! This is a glaring violation of equality among citizens.

Expatriates are the source of remittances, our second highest foreign currency earner and thus they have been playing a laudable role in our economy. We're indebted to them. Notwithstanding, they have long been neglected when it comes to taking effective and immediate actions to resolve cases of exploitation and repression inflicted on them abroad. The recent move seems to serve as a compensation for that negligence. Yet that's a wrong way to do so!

Almost all the citizens of Bangladesh LIVING here are contributing to the country to a degree limited by their capability. Think about the rickshaw pullers, farmers, honest businessmen and service holders who are working hard for a better life and in the process, constantly contributing to the country more or less. Are they the dregs of society?

Aren't the youngsters of today going to feel that their fate is being controlled by where their parents stay for earning money? Isn't it a violation of human rights and basic principle of a democratic society? Special privileges must be well justified against ethics.

[ published as a letter in the The STAR, a weekly magazine of The Daily Star on August 08, 2008 ]

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Bhut er Mukhe Raam Naam!

Of late, Khaleda Zia observed that upcoming local polls had been planned to place chosen people in offices.

If we take into account the pattern of attempts military rulers like Ayub Khan and Ershad exploited to establish their rule in the past, as was pointed out in many articles, Khaleda Zia has aptly expressed her suspicion. Notwithstanding, this statement from her sounds like the Bangla phrase, "bhut er mukhe raam naam"! Needless to say, it's the BNP-led 4-party alliance that planned to stage a farcical election in January 2007, paying little attention to create a conducive and credible atmosphere for a free and fair election, ignoring the participation of another main opposition party Awami League and in order to ensure their victory they left no stone unturned to place their own chosen people at all levels of the administration during their last regime, keeping in mind the fiasco of 1996.

True words from crooked to the core politicians, however, sounds irritating!

[ An abridged version of this post was published as a quick comment under the title 'Khaleda's claim' in The New Age on June 30, 2008, as a letter under the title 'Who is saying this?' in The Daily Star on July 03, 2008 ]

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

End Result of 1/11

By now, it's palpable that Hasina and Khaleda - both belligerent Begums would no longer remain behind the bars. They have already threatened CTG with a mass movement and keeping in mind their yet overwhelmingly prevailing supporters or activists who are poised to get to streets at the slightest chance available leading to unrest and havoc countrywide as was manifested before thanks to DU August incidence, CTG has now deviated from its hard line.

Although some of the corrupt people have already been convicted by court and sentenced and they are lamenting in jail cells, most of the big guns are still far from being proved guilty because of lack of sufficient compelling evidences. It has been speculated that they would be free soon on bail through an amendment of Emergency Act.

It's obvious by now that the attempt of CTG to conjure up a dominant third force in the political arena has failed miserably. At present the best CTG can do is to conduct election within their pledged time frame and handover power to the elected government. As there's no third force as powerful as BNP or AL, it's certain that either BNP or AL would assume power. So we are back to square one! We have fallen in a loop: Khaleda, Hasina, Khaleda, Hasina, Khaleda, Hasina.... (in between there may be some unelected governments)

I can vividly recall the backdrop of the so-called and much talked about 1/11. BNP-led 4 party alliance was resolved for getting to power by hook or by crook, trying to stage a farcical election on January 22 2007, ignoring the participation of main opposition party AL. Nazmul Huda, an influential individual in BNP, minister of the last regime, even made a statement in a conference with Khaleda present in person there, "our prime minister is now on leave, taking rest for a while. She will again lead the nation soon after the upcoming election". Such kind of fawning the flatterers were! On the contrary, AL was dogged in its determination to foil BNP's nicely sketched see-through conspiracy. Both party was greedy for power - grab it! By any means! No time to look at the greater interest of Bangladesh! Time of election! Another chance to plunder the rest of resources this country is left with after unbridled corruption of last regime!

Dhaka University (DU) had been closed for a couple of months due to political unrest and violence at campus. It was an unbearable situation. With no significant work to do apart from doing tuition, I had to pass that couple of months just worrying what was going to happen. No clue! The future seemed bizarrely bleak. A civil war was looming large. What a horrible scenario!

And then army-backed caretaker government rose to the occasion. I was greatly taken aback at the news of opening DU on Saturday, just after newly formed CTG assumed office on Friday! It seemed that everyone in Bangladesh except the crooked politicians heaved a sigh of relief. High hopes flooded everywhere. We were looking forward to better days this time around. CTG would rein corruption in because it would punish the corrupt politicians and bureaucrats. As was expected, CTG made a flying start with Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) putting top corrupt suspects in jails. This war on corruption culminated with the arrest of Khaleda with her two sweet sons and Hasina. Yes! This time these two would be taught a good lesson for their misdeeds, if not by themselves then by their cronies obviously with the connivance of the head of party.

Alas! How fool people like me are! Corruption and dishonesty with the help of apathy among commoners have found its root to such a deep level that corrupt people can now hope to regain their power.

It's a fiasco on the part of CTG. Of course, they tried but failed because of poor plan. Their effort has degenerated into a breath-taking drama, raising hopes among the common people and disappointing them in the long run.

It's almost the same bunch of people who plundered our country in their past regimes and we're going to have them again after election.

One possibility that the army can come out to the forefront and military rule may prevail in the future, can't be ruled out outright. It's true we have seen ugly face of democracy, but it's also true that we have seen uglier face of military rule - murder of Sheikh Mujib by the hands of some military officers, terrible tenure of Ershad.

In either way, the end result of 1/11 is a big zero!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Our National Flag on Our Blogs

Patriotism is not something we need to flaunt. It lies inside us. With that said, we do love to see signs of our country in a positive way in international arena, be it the success of a Bangladeshi living abroad or the presence of our national flag in web pages.

Yes! As a proud citizen of though poor country Bangladesh, I have put the picture of our national flag on my blog. It's a google gadget and it was pretty simple adding it to my blog as a page element. Interested people are requested to visit that google gadget for national flag.

Hope bloggers of Bangladesh will add the national flag to their blogs.