Jack Of All Trades
Bangabandhu, a synonym for BD
Published : Wednesday, 15 August, 2018 at 12:00 AM Count : 1220
On this day, exactly 43 years ago, father of the nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was assassinated with most of his family members in a military coup instigated by those who had opposed the birth of Bangladesh. He was killed at the age of 55 when he was a matured statesman and just started to lead the new nation, that emerged through a nine-month-long successful Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971, to prosperity. Only his two daughters, who had been abroad, survived the assassination.
None believed that the elder of the two daughters, would become a Prime Minister of the country decades after the assassination, and will bring the killers to book. Many ones say Allah has kept the daughters alive to punish the self confessed killers, who however thought that there was no force in the world to convict them for killing President Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Bangabandhu was killed to stop the march of Bangladesh towards economic prosperity and in the long run to force the independent country to become a confederating state with Pakistan.
His assassination was bolt from the blue to the nation, which was too stunned to retaliate immediately. Even the assassins were in a stage of bewilderment for many hours and did not dare to retrieve the body of the great leader from the staircase of his building where he was laying slain. However, the nation took long 21 years to rise again and reinstate Bangabandhu and his political philosophy back to the country's politics. Bangabandhu has been reinstated in his due position and his image has been restored at home and abroad. Bangabandhu is now synonym for Bangladesh and vice versa. Even his staunch critics have now accepted him as the independence leader of Bangladesh and agree that his assassination was a blunder.
Since 1991 with a hiccup in between 2001 to 2008, the nation has truly reinstated Bangabandhu in politics and the history placing him at the appropriate position. As the game changes the opponents of Bangabandhu and his party Awami League, who tried in vain to bury Bangabandhu and his party to oblivion, are now struggling for their own existence in political system of the country. Meanwhile the brave and resilient people of Bangladesh have frustrated the killers of Bangabandhu, their godfathers and mentors, finally routing them from the country. Though delayed due to political reasons, the killers have been brought to justice.
Five of the 12 convicted killers, were hanged in the Dhaka prison in 2010, some 35 years after the heinous crime they had committed in early hours of August 15, 1975. The rest are hiding abroad and one of the fugitives reportedly died in Zimbabwe years back. On the 43rd anniversary of Bangabandhu's assassination Bangladesh will take a renewed vow to find out the fugitive and hang them one by one.
By achieving success in socio-economic and political fields the people of the country have also foiled the conspiracies hatched by the executed and fugitive killers, whose souls perhaps are noticing with deep envy that the nation, which they wanted to destroy, is not only surviving but also progressing ahead gloriously. The absconders are either hiding abroad in an inglorious way or surviving at the mercy of foreign governments.
However, Bangladesh is trying to capture and bring back the killers from abroad with the help of the respective governments. The killers have failed to accomplish their ill motives as Bangladesh is now one of the world's emerging economies with a robust manufacturing bastion and a niche in export market. It has already become the world's 32nd largest economy and is poised to transform in to the 30th largest economy by 2022, according to International Monetary Fund.
Currently the country earns around USD 37 billion from exports annually and receives another USD 15 billion remittance from expatriate workers. It produces some 36 million tonnes of rice, some 2 million tonnes of wheat annually. It is now in abundance with fish and farm produce, despite natural calamity takes tolls often. The country has become a leading contributor to world peace deploying thousands of troops in United Nations Peacekeeping Operations (UNPKO). Since 1988 some 83,000 Bangladesh troopers participated in 45 UNPKO and currently some 5,000 troopers are engaged along with weapons and equipments including aircraft, helicopters, naval vessels and tanks, in 11 ongoing UNPKO in five countries. It brings additional USD500 million as remunerations.
Achieving almost all the eight millennium development goals in 2015, Bangladesh became a role model for many countries. It is now trying to meet the most of the 17 sustainable development goals in the stipulated period of 2030.
Though Bangabandhu was detained by Pakistan government at Lyallpur prison in Faisalabad during the liberation war, Bangladesh freedom fighters fought against Pakistani occupational forces under his inspiration. Bangabandhu was the President of Bangladesh exile government, that conducted the liberation war, under the leadership of Acting President Syed Nazrul Islam and Prime Minister Tajuddin Ahmed.
With the return of Bangabandhu to Dhaka from Pakistan prison via London and New Delhi, the conspirators in guise of his associates started destructive activities. They caused deterioration of law and order, fuelling anti government forces. They engaged thugs and criminals to swoop of the people and also loot government properties. They used to sabotage government food silos and secretly set fire on jute mills and jute stakes, then the only exportable of the country.
Meanwhile floods hit Bangladesh in 1974, destroying standing crops, which ultimately caused a severe famine. It was the severest famine after the great famine of 1943. The bite of famine was severe as the conspirators allegedly deflected vessels carrying food grains to Bangladesh from different donors. Besides deflecting the food aids the conspirators blamed the government for failing to tackle the famine, which killed an estimated 1.5 million people, according to unofficial figure. But the government acknowledged the death of some 27,000 people due famine.
A section of political parties and media directly or indirectly fuelled the conspirators through different antigovernment agitation and concocted and fabricated reports. The government of Bangabandhu tackled all those problems and maintained political stability, until a section misguided junior army officials staged the coup at a time when most senior defence officials and cabinet ministers played lacklustre roles.
The killers wanted to annihilate the Awami League party which Bangabandhu had been leading as its President since 1966 after serving the party as the General Secretary since 1953. However, the party revived itself after going through series of persecution for long 21 years since the assassination of Bangabandhu. The party is now one of the largest and strongest political parties of the world.
It is believed by his followers that the departed soul of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is obviously being hosted by the Almighty Allah in Jannah, as he dedicated his selfless leadership to the freedom loving people of the country.
The author is Business Editor,
The Daily Observer