The celebrations of 31st night
Anti-social activities should be kept off
With the celebration of 31st night of December, people are ready worldwide to welcome 2017. With the rapid growth of Western culture globally, celebrations of the Christian new year have got a new dimension in the South Asian region. As a matter of fact, the celebration of 31st night has earned much popularity in this part. Celebrations on different occasions are among various major sources of enjoyment, especially for urban people. Like those who follow the Gregorian calendar, Bangladesh's citizens have also prepared themselves to celebrate the eve of the new year. But the joyous moment is often tainted with some brutal and anti-social activities like torture, atrocities, sexual assault and repression of women.
As law and order is of much importance for a disciplined society, so is its need for Bangladesh. Any breach of it may bring about immense social disorder. Our previous experiences require us to be more cautious, especially where a big gathering is concerned. Some rowdy people take the various celebrations as an opportunity to assault and sexually harass women and girls in the crowd. It is worth mentioning here that on the night of December 31, 1999, some youths harassed a woman to its extreme extent on the premises of Teachers and Students Centre of Dhaka University where she had gone for millennium celebrations along with three friends who were driven away from the scene also assaulted. After that, the festival of Bengali new year was also stained with incidents of sexual assault on women at the Dhaka University campus on April 14, 2015 evening. On another occasion of Pahela Baishakh, several women were sexually assaulted by a group of young men on two buses of a public university.
And unfortunately each time, the allegation has gone against the police members for their being negligent of responsibilities. The government, law enforcing agencies and concerned authorities have tried to portray those inhuman incidents as scattered or isolated incidents. On the other hand, the country's eminent and common citizens have been deeply concerned, as ever, over the recent spate of inhuman incidents. They have always termed these as a degeneration of society. These brutalities, that have been seen happening in the countries like Rwanda, with its Hutu-Tutsi conflict, have taken place one after another in our country, which have given a massive shake each time to the whole society and raised questions about the country's security system as well as society's overall outlook towards women.
On the other hand, also the matter of possible militant attacks should not be overlooked. The arrest of five Jamaatul Mujahedeen Bangladesh (JMB) operatives only a couple of days back from their hideouts in the capital and their admittance of planning of attacks in the 31st night celebrations corroborate the fact that JMB and other militant groups are still active. By being able to nab them, we perhaps have been successful for the time being in preventing another grievous incident like the Gulshan attack, but we must not put off the thinking that they might be doing it in some other parts of the country.
Because of all these reasons, we call for a concentrated security system to be ensured by the government. And on people's part, they should be more responsible by being composed while in celebration. Any social disturbance should be avoided. Law and order should not be violated with the celebrations.