Kazi Liakat Hossain
THE nation is celebrating the 38th anniversary of Victory Day with much enthusiasm today. The day marks the defeat of the occupation forces in the Liberation War in 1971.
Actually, it was Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the architect and Father of the Nation, whose great leadership and dynamism inspired the innocent, harmless teeming millions to stand as solid as a rock in those dark days of the nine-month War of Liberation.
At this critical juncture, when the nation appears to be divided on political lines, many pertinent questions crowd the minds of the people of the land, recalling the atrocities committed by the Pakistani occupation army leading to a calamitous crisis unprecedented in modern history.
After a 9-month war, the mighty Bengali nation snatched victory at a heavy cost. But even in this democratic era the nation is plagued and haunted by forces opposed to our glorious Liberation War. There is no sign of unity of thought and action.
Politics has become a costly game, and has been completely commercialised for the benefit of those self-certified patriots who are allegedly destroying the moral fabric and body politic of the Bengali nation.
Watchers of our political scene are observing the rapid political developments with dismay. Many people of the country have miserably failed to evaluate the sacrifices of the brave freedom fighters who embraced martyrdom at the altar of independence, and the sovereign existence of a self-respecting entity on the map of the world.
Has the political leadership of the day even thought of materialising the lofty objectives of the Liberation War? Has the present democratically elected government really brought smiles to faces of the toiling masses who are braving all odds with patience, tolerance and perseverance? Is the present government really following the ideals of the Father of the Nation, who was brutally assassinated by a section of demented army officers?
Let it be known to all that Bangabandhu, the architect of sovereign Bangladesh, sacrificed his precious life for consolidating the sovereignty and integrity of Bangladesh. But it is most unfortunate that we have forgotten his contribution to the cause of the deprived, exploited, oppressed and suppressed Bengalis.
The time has come for us all to bear in mind that our Founding Father was not the leader of a particular party. He, in fact, was the leader of the entire nation, and as bonafide patriots it is our foremost duty to adore him. There is a ray of hope that the killers of Bangabandhu will be hanged by the verdict of the highest court of the country.
The ruling party should not misuse the revered name of the liberator lying in eternal rest at Tungipara. This is not the time to create tension in the nation by unnecessarily naming structure after structure after the great soul. By this act of ours we are doing a negative service to him and the nation at large. We are, in a way, undermining our great benefactor by misusing his name through verbose rhetoric and utterance whenever there is scope. Do not “arouse” the nation in this cheap manner.
The Victory Day of this year will bear a special significance if terrorism, extortion, mugging, killing, women trafficking, acid throwing, raping etc are effectively curbed. With a view to curbing terrorism both the major political parties should come forward sincerely and sit together for mutual settlement of the problems now facing the country.
The party in opposition should return to the Jatiya Sangsad with open heart, in a true democratic atmosphere, and solve the all petty differences on national issues, wipe out all personal grudges and rise above partisanship. Both the parties should refrain from making cheap slogans and derogatory remarks.
The prime need of the hour is economic development. National victory has been achieved but economic victory yet to be.
We sincerely do believe that the two principal national leaders, Sheikh Hasina and Begum Khaleda Zia, will act with utmost prudence and refrain from political hostilities which may jeopardise our hard earned unity and independence.
Kazi Liakat Hossain is Advisory Editor, The Economy.