Contribution of Assam in the Liberation War of Bangladesh by Salam Azad, publisher - Synergy Books India, December 2016
A book that makes us historically indebted
Sujan Miah depicts the valuable naration of the writer
The book reminds the unforgettable contribution of Assam, the northeastern province of India, the next-door neighbor of Bangladesh, during the Liberation War in 1971. The people of Assam (Assam and Meghalaya was one state in 1971) played a significant role the independence war of Bangladesh. In the Liberation War in 1971, India not only spent seven thousand crores of rupees but also sacrificed 3,630 officers and jawans. About 9856 officers and jawans were wounded and 213 officers and jawans are still missing. The blood of Indian soldiers is mixed with the soil of liberated Bangladesh.
There are eight chapters in the book. The writer puts forward the details of the Liberation War. In the first chapter, the general election of 1970 has been described. In that election, Awami League led by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman sealed a sweeping victory bagging 160 seats out of 300 with 39.2% of total votes while Pakistan People's Party (PPP) got 81 seats with 18.6% votes. The writer describes the nine-month long Liberation War of Bangladesh in the book. On the fateful night of March 25, 1971, the Pakistani occupation forces with the assistance of their local collaborators launched a brutal massacre. During the infamous operation named 'Searchlight', thousands of innocent people were brutally killed. The people of then East Pakistan jumped on the battlefield responding the call of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman who was detained by Pakistani forces on the night of March 25 and taken away West Pakistan. After a heavy loss of three million people and in exchange of the honor of two lakh women, Bangladesh emerged as an independent nation in the world. Truly speaking, Bangladesh's independence became possible for the all-out assistance of neighboring India which recognized Bangladesh as a sovereign nation on December 6 and waged full-fledged war against Pakistani forces. In the book, the writer has put forward an important aspect of the Liberation War of Bangladesh. The sacrifices of the Bangladeshi women throughout nine months of the independence will be written in the history. The writer mentioned between two to four lac women had lost their dignities as Pakistani occupation forces with assistance of their local collaborators carried out a systematic campaign of genocidal rape. During the Liberation War, tens of thousands of people of East Pakistan were forced to leave their homes due to atrocities carried out by the Pakistani occupation forces and local collaborators of them. The displaced people took refuge in neighboring Assam and Meghalaya and they were welcomed their by the local people. The writer tells about the East Pakistan's refugees in India in the book. All were certain that Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman would be killed as he was solely led the people of East Pakistan to the War of Independence. The Pakistani rulers were highly angry at him. The occupation forces picked him up from his house in Dhaka and he was flown to West Pakistan. He was kept in the dark cell of prison. But Bangabandhu was confident and hopeful that he would go back to his motherland. He told the Pakistani authorities to give back his body if he was killed. But after East Pakistan was liberated, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was released and then Indian government had played crucial role for his release.
The writer Salam Azad has done an outstanding job to write a historical book on the contribution of Assam during the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971. He has authored 53 books. For his outspoken writings, the author faced the wrath of the BNP-Jamaat government. As a result, he had to take refuge in New Delhi. He spent long six years in exile. The readers can get a detailed description of the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971 especially the contribution of Indian state Assam.
The reviewer is working with The Asian Age