The murals of the Language Movement heroes and nameplates of different roads named after them in the city’s Dhanmondi area are now lying in a shabby condition, thanks to the negligence of the authorities concerned.
Then undivided Dhaka City Corporation installed the murals and nameplates naming different roads in the posh area after the Language Movement veterans over a decade ago in recognition of their contributions to the historic Language Movement.Language heroes said naming some of the streets at Dhanmondi after them was a great initiative as it helped the people learn about their struggle and sacrifices.
But the current ramshackle condition of the nameplates and murals of the Language Movement activists has hurt them, they said.
Veteran language hero Ahmed Rafiq said, “The nameplates and murals were left uncared for in a sheer negligence of the authorities concerned. If they can’t take care of these memorials, they should not have installed those.”
Visiting various streets of Dhanmondi, it was found that the great initiative now lies in a decrepit state and there is no one to take care of these nameplates and murals.
Dhanmondi Road No. 1 was named after Language Movement hero Golam Mowla. But the marble mural describing his role in the historic movement remains unclear and street people have been sleeping in front of the nameplate.
The nameplate of Road No. 3 named after Language Movement veteran Mohammed Sultan has turned into a garbage corner while the nameplate of Road No. 4 named after Wali Ahad is covered with a towel and surrounded by different goods kept by the owners of roadside shops.The nameplate of Road No. 5, which was named after Language Movement hero Abdur Rashid Tarkabagish, gathered dust though it is in a good shape compared to other nameplates.
The nameplate of Abul Kalam Shamsuddin was hidden under dust and remnants of posters at Road No. 6.
The mural and nameplate of convener of All-party State Language Movement Committee Abdul Matin at Road No. 7 were also full of dust while the portrait of his comrade Gaziul Haque at Road No. 8 was somehow visible but the details of his contributions described under the mural are vanished.
The mural and nameplate of Language Movement hero Kazi Golam Mahbub at Dhanmondi Road No. 9 and the nameplate of Language Movement activist and eminent politician Mahiuddin Ahmed at Road No. 11 are in a better state.
The nameplate of Road No. 12 named after Dr Sufia Ahmed is completely covered with a large-size film poster while the nameplate of Road No. 13 named after another Language Movement veteran Safia Khatun was difficult to be found as it was surrounded by makeshift shops.
Dhanmondi Road No. 14 was named after Language Movement hero Justice Abdur Rahman Chowdhury. His mural and nameplate set at the road’s entrance were visible but a few pieces of the mural were missing.
Empty chips packets, ice-cream covers, soft drink cans, disposable plastic cups, banana peels and paper waste were put in front of the nameplate of Showkat Ali at Road No. 4/A and if anyone is not aware of it beforehand, there is no way to understand that the Dhanmondi Road 5/A is named after Language Movement hero Kamruddin Ahmad as all that remains in his nameplate is nothing but a white wall.
Dhanmondi Road No. 9/A was named after Mohammad Toaha but no nameplate regarding this naming was found on the road.
However, despite a number of small posters placed on the nameplate, the name of Language Movement activist Abdus Samad Azad can somehow be seen at Dhanmondi Road No. 13/A.
Asked about the dilapidated condition of the nameplates and murals of the nation’s bravest souls, Chief Executive Officer of Dhaka South City Corporation ABM Amin Ullah Nuri said, “We’ve noticed the matter and already taken a move to renovate these nameplates and murals. You’ll see the results within the next week.”