Given the fact that birth can be controlled and the icy touch of death is inevitable sure and certain, which none shall ever be able to evade, some mortals do not seem to realise or even perceive, blinded by power. “The dead cannot cry out for justice, so it is a duty of the living to do so for them”. In all climes and cultures death evokes a somber human emotion of futility and emptiness, and a dead body never induces disapproval—not to speak of aversion or rancour—because the departed person’s mortal remains are beyond reproach. Even if he were an enemy while alive, after death he is completely immobilised to even respond to abuses hurled at him. This is a propos absolutely brutish buffoonery by a group of unheard of persons who support the ruling Awami League which is now in legitimacy crisis as 153 out of 300 MPs were just selected but did not contest polls.
The nasty politicking at the Shahid Minar — which belongs to all Bangladeshis — guarded by combat-ready police over bringing a bold champion of democracy, the deceased Dr. Pias Karim—who had been a politically conscious 13-year old adolescent in 1971 and was arrested by the Pakistani military junta for his offence of distributing pamphlets supporting the Liberation War—by dim-witted brats belonging to the ruling Awami League front organisations, under the active auspices of the pro-Awami League (AL) Vice-Chancellor of the Dhaka University and its Proctor, has not finished yet.
We thank law minister Anisul Huq for unveiling the actual position of Pias Karim who was detained by Pakistani army during the 1971 Liberation War for distributing fliers in support of the Liberation War. His father M A Karim was the founder of the district Awami League unit in Comilla. The pro-government elements are now hated by the masses; and contrarily, Pias Karim’s ‘Zanaza’ (funeral prayer) was attended by thousands of people who loved and admired him for his forthright thoughts on people’s rights.
With many custodial deaths, violent crimes, enforced disappearances of opposition political leaders, involvement of law enforcing agencies like RAB in political murders, corruption of gargantuan proportions, huge stock market swindling and scams galore in government-owned banks, the Awami League (AL) rule of Sheikh Hasina has been widely condemned in the media abroad, while at home the body politic by and large rejected her party. Despite the farcical charade of polls of 5 January this year, which AL leaders described as a matter of mere obligation to go by the rules indicating midterm general election, the ruling AL bigwigs are now showing a brazen 360-degree volte-face shouting aloud that the next parliamentary election will not be held before 2019.
Journalists Sagar and Runi were murdered; on February 23, 2010, Nurul Kabir, the Editor of New Age received death threats from an unidentified person and his car was chased and attacked by unknown people at night; Dr. Tuhin Malik’s car was under miscreants’ attack and a hero of the 1969 uprising, Dr Mahbubullah was physically attacked by miscreants— because they champion real democracy and do not toe the ruling Awami League line. The Central Shaheed Minar has been used for long by the parties believing in different ideologies, but now a conspiracy is on to monopolise it by pro-government people. Some pro-government student and cultural organisations prevented Piash Karim’s family from taking his body to the Central Shaheed Minar for enabling people to pay their last homage to him. The so-called Muktijoddha Santan Command declared nine citizens persona non grata at the central Shaheed Minar. They are columnist Farhad Mazhar, daily Manabzamin editor Motiur Rahman Chowdhury, columnist Mahfuzullah, the New Age editor Nurul Kabir, DU teachers Prof. Asif Nazrul and Prof. Amena Mohsin, lawyer Dr. Tuhin Malik, journalist Golam Mortuza and BRAC University teacher Prof. Dilara Chowdhury.
As regards Dr. Pias Karim, he was an academic in America who joined the BRAC University as a professor. In the news and social media there are all kinds of exaggerations involving his father vis-à-vis his role in 1971. As an example, it was widely reported that his father was responsible for the arrest of Shaheed Dhiredranath Datta by the Pakistani army. The fact of the matter is when Shaheed Datta was arrested on March 29, 1971 his father had already escaped to his own paternal home.
“I found him a practicing socialist, great humanist, genuine patriot and a person possessing absolutely no materialistic greed, a scarce virtue in Bangladesh society. Keeping aside his latest political stand, he will be greatly missed by anyone who met or knew him, including his friends and foes alike”, wrote Convenor of the Canadian Committee for Human Rights and Democracy in Bangladesh, Mozammel H. Khan. During his recent meeting with Tareque Zia, Pias Karim “told him that he did not concur with his (Tareque) tampering with Bangladesh’s history, and especially with his attempt to demean Sheikh Mujibur Rahman”, wrote Mozammel H. Khan.
A renowned American university president, Robert M Hutchins, was of the view that the death of democracy is not likely to be an assassination from ambush; it will be a slow extinction from apathy, indifference, and under-nourishment. There is enough thought in this adage for those who care for democratic values.
Source: Weekly Holiday