She was in her late teens. Her name was 'Paree' because she was as beautiful as an 'angel'. She was the eldest daughter of her family. She hailed from Rangpur which is situated in the northern part of the country. She wanted to receive education. She dreamt of becoming a fashion designer one day.
As soon as she finished her SSC exam, she said, "I want to go to Dhaka, father! There I will admit myself into a college. I will work very hard. After I passing HSC, I will receive further education. My mission will be to fulfil my dream." Her father heard what his daughter had said. But he spoke not a word. He was total dumbfound. He was in deep crisis. A series of thoughts enveloped his mind. He thought if his daughter left home at this age of her life she would surely be in trouble. Life outside particularly in Dhaka was full of challenges and risks, he thought. Then, after a day or two, he said to her, "If you had planned such big things you could have told me earlier. How can I let you go all of a sudden? How will you survive there, my daughter?" Paree was shocked but she was not surprised. She composed herself and said, "Father, have trust in me and in my confidence. I will not let you down. Moreover I will be able to face all challenges of my life myself. Unless I go to Dhaka I cannot fulfill my dreams, can I? O' father, please let me go." At long last, Paree's father succumbed to her wish. He had no other choice but to let her go to Dhaka.
But, soon after reaching Dhaka, she learnt that her father was absolutely right. Life in Dhaka was really full of difficulties. She said to herself, "If I had listened to my father I would not have faced such problems. To stay in Rangpur and prosecute my study there would have been better."
She, however, admitted herself into a college at Mirpur in Dhaka. But alas! She could not continue her study there because she was too poor to bear the expenses. So, she looked for employment. Finally after a couple of months, a kind-hearted man came forward to help her. He got her employed in a garments factory at Savar. It was called Crown Apparels Ltd. It was situated at the ground floor of a building called Rana Plaza.
Paree was destined to embrace a cruel fate in life. She had to work from dawn to dusk with no break whatsoever. What she earned was very little. Now she thinks, "If I continue to work like this how shall I fulfil my dream?" But her dream remained a dream because something different thing had happened one day.
On one ill-fated morning she went to her place of work as usual. She was busy working, but all of sudden the entire building called Rana Plaza collapsed. She along with another 1200 people was buried under the tons of debris of the building. She died an untimely death and so did her dream.
The writer is an alumnus of Institute of Modern Languages, University of Dhaka