Wednesday, 10 August, 2022

Bangladesh Will Move Forward by Converting Grief into Strength

  • Dr Matiur Rahman
  • 1st August, 2022 03:44:21 PM
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August is the month of mourning. Throughout August, the Bengali nation will remember the greatest Bengali of a thousand years, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. The Bengali nation will pay a heart-wrenching tribute to this great leader, the architect of freedom. Hatred and contempt will be expressed to traitors and the enemies defeated in the 1971 liberation war who brutally killed Bangabandhu and his family members.

August is a very sad month for the nation. This August marked the beginning of one of the most lamentable and tainted chapters in the nation's history. Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the golden son of the soil and the great architect of our independence, was brutally killed in the middle of August 1975. On that day, the soil of golden Bengal was dyed with the fresh blood of this great hero of a thousand years of history.

On August 15, 1975, the Father of the Nation was murdered along with his beloved family members. The great ideals and spirit of the liberation war also fell victim to the conspiracy and attack of the defeated enemies of 1971. After Bangabandhu's assassination, another tainted history was created by blocking its trial with the Indemnity Ordinance.

Bangabandhu dreamed of building a 'Golden Bengal' in his beloved Bangladesh to bring back smile on the face of his beloved poor, miserable people. After independence, he started massive development activities with people from all corners of society to fulfill his dream. But on August 15, 1975, the ruthless bullets of ungrateful assassins stopped him from fulfilling that dream.

Attempts were made to tear apart Bangabandhu's beloved Bangladesh and the glorious history and traditions of the Liberation War. But they could not. They have been defeated by the poor, miserable people of this country. Their love for their beloved 'Bangabandhu' is in the hearts of the poor, unfortunate people. Those poor, distressed people have rejected those notorious criminals. They have been thrown into the dustbin of history.

After the Awami League came into power under the leadership of Bangabandhu's daughter Sheikh Hasina in 1996, the tainted ordinance was cancelled, and the trial of Bangabandhu's murder began. The nation has been freed from stigma by announcing the final verdict of Bangabandhu's assassination trial on January 27, 2010, and executing the execution of five murderers after breaking the web of the long trial process and various intrigues. However, the entire nation is still waiting for the execution of Bangabandhu's remaining six fugitive murderers.

After Bangabandhu's brutal killing, a shadow of mourning fell over the entire country. This grief also spread in the international arena. Willy Brandt, the leader of West Germany and a Nobel laureate, said, "After the killing of Mujib, Bengalis can no longer be trusted. A Bengali who can kill Sheikh Mujib can do any heinous act.'

Eminent writer Nirad C. Chowdhury referred to Bengalis as 'traitors' and said, "Bengalis have shown their suicidal character to the people of the world by killing the dreamer of the nation, Sheikh Mujib."

The Daily Telegraph, published in London August 15, 1975, mentioned, "Millions of people in Bangladesh will consider Sheikh Mujib's heinous murder as an irreparable loss."

After the assassination of Bangabandhu, the character of the state changed. Secularism was removed from the constitution. Communal politics and power emerged in the country, occupying different levels of administration. There is no denying that after the assassination of Bangabandhu, the inter-religious harmony in the society declined, which hindered the formation of a welfare state.

After the assassination of Bangabandhu, there was no distinction between right and wrong in the country. Military rule lasted for 15 years. Political activities were suspended. Common people lost their basic rights. The right to vote was imprisoned in the army camp. A tendency to seize power by unconstitutional means prevailed in the country.

The killers did not stop with the killing of Bangabandhu; they also distorted the history of our great liberation war. Bangabandhu's contribution to the War of Independence has been downplayed, and attempts have been made to erase his name from history. Bangabandhu's March 7 speech could not be aired, and Ziaur Rahman's name was promoted instead of Bangabandhu's as the announcer of independence.

Trials of war criminals were stopped. In 1973 a general amnesty was announced for war criminals. During the liberation war in 1971, only those who did not commit serious crimes, i.e. murder, rape, looting and arson, were pardoned. At the time of Bangabandhu's assassination, 11,000 war criminals were incarcerated in various prisons awaiting trial. On December 31, 1975, the Dalal Act was repealed, and all war criminals were released overnight. By freeing convicted war criminals, Rajakars walked into the society with their chests puffed, and freedom fighters bend down and beg. The bleeding of the heart of the martyr's family increased manifold. Humanity gives violators more incentive to committing wrongdoing.

Another tragic event in the nation's history took place in August. On August 21, 2004, through the worst grenade attack in history, those criminals who killed Bangabandhu tried again to kill his daughter Sheikh Hasina. The Awami League president narrowly escaped the grenade attack at the Awami League rally on Bangabandhu Avenue, but 24 lives were lost, including female Awami League leader Ivy Rahman.

Bengalis cry when the month of August comes. Bengalis who favored independence carried out a month-long program bearing the pain of losing their Father. Bangladesh Awami League and its associates, fraternal and various social-cultural-political organizations will observe the National Mourning Day on August 15 through various programs in a solemn and sorrowful atmosphere with due dignity, respect, love, and feel in solidarity with the whole nation in the mournful August.

Eminent persons of the country think that the nation has been freed from stigma through implementing the verdict of Bangabandhu's murderers. Similarly, the slander of Bengali's suicidal character has also come to an end.

In its August 15, 1975 issue, The Times of London mentioned, 'Despite everything, Bangabandhu will always be remembered because without him, there is no real existence in Bangladesh'.

Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman's bold and uncompromising leadership gave the Bengali nation the impetus to claim its rights. Our beloved motherland became independent under his leadership through the armed liberation war.

Bangabandhu has struggled throughout his life to achieve political freedom and economic liberation of the people. Bangabandhu's dream was to establish "Sonar Bangla" (Golden Bengal) free from hunger and poverty. Under the visionary, courageous and magical leadership of the Father of the Nation, the Bengali nation broke the shackles of subjugation and brought forth the crimson sun of freedom. Bengalis got an independent state, own flag and national anthem.

When Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib was engaged in the struggle to build a "Golden Bengal" with the whole nation in the newly independent war-torn country, he was killed by the anti-liberation war criminal gang. Through this, they tried to stop Bengali tradition, culture, and progress. Their objective was to destroy the state structure of non-communal democratic Bangladesh and spoil our hard-earned freedom.

A statesman was brutally killed on August 15, and an attempt was made to destroy the dream of establishing a new independent state and building a non-communal Bangladesh in the spirit of the liberation war. Bangabandhu's contribution to our national history is immense. Bangabandhu was the embodiment of national unity, inspiration and freedom, the embodiment of the dreams of the Bengali nation.

So our responsibility will be to make Bangladesh a happy and prosperous country by completing Bangabandhu's incomplete work by being enriched with knowledge and dignity. Only then will we be able to show due respect to this great leader. At the same time, it will be possible to move forward by converting grief into strength.

The writer is a researcher and development worker

Source: Sun Editorial