Published:  01:14 AM, 06 April 2021

Recounting the glory of independence

Recounting the glory of independence

Golden Jubilee of Independence
Long 50 years have passed since Bangladesh has had the independence on 26th March with savoring the taste of Victory Day on 16th December 1971. The collaborators and the war criminals of the dark alley took shelter in the hole when Bangladesh was liberated from the occupation on 16th December 1971.

When the country was in celebration and jubilation mood after victory day in shaping a new Bangladesh, when freedom fighters returning from the battlefield laid down their arms on the feet of Bangabandhu when he was back home alive from the crucible of death in Pakistani dungeon; the collaborators and the war criminals in hideout did not sit idle, rather they were indulged in conspiring how soon they could strike back through intrigues and conspiracies being hatched from within and outside the country with the help of those hawkish superpowers who did not like to see Bangladesh emerges as an independent country. The enemies of the country started counting down the time and at the opportune moment; they attacked the core values of Bangladesh liberation and assassinated Bangabandhu on 15th August 1975 with his entire family except for his two daughters who were abroad at that time.

Road to regression
Taking the country to the path of regression through doing away the four state principles, by infamous 5th amendment of the constitution which brought all the notoriety in Bangladesh politics, on which the foundation of Bangladesh was laid; the killer and the perpetrators chose the policy of smearing the core value of liberation and slowly injected the deadly venom of fundamentalism, terrorism and Pakistanisation process in the veins and arteries of the nation particularly to a faction of the young generation, under the umbrella of evil forces, who did not see the war of liberation and were born in post-liberation Bangladesh.

After the assassination of Bangabandhu, due to grabbing of state power by the usurpers and beneficiaries of Bangabandhu's killing for long twenty-two years (1975-2008) with anti-liberation mindset, the feeling of anti-liberation sentiments took the shape of a mountain from the molehill with festering growth of anti-liberation elements in large numbers. It is much disturbing to notice that the country which was emerged as a modern democratic secular state under the dynamic leadership of Bangabandhu---the one leader of one country is now fallen divided into two bi-polar and diametrically opposed camps of ideologies.

Anti liberation sentiment
Contemporary public opinion survey and electoral results suggest that 25-30 percent of the total population of Bangladesh is in the camp of anti-liberation elements in different political colors and identity that safely garnered their footholds and became beneficiary after the assassination of Bangabandhu as against 99 percent with the spirit of freedom when Bangladesh was liberated in 1971. It is strange to note how a sizeable population of 25-30 percent indulged in subscribing to the sentiment of the anti-liberation faction in such a short span of time of 50 years of liberation when the nation is celebrating the golden jubilee of independence alongside the birth centenary of Bangabandhu. Bengalis have a bad name for being an oblivious nation.

But can a nation be oblivious in such a magnitude in such a short span of time of only 50 years in its national history? It is long 75 years since Second World War ended by defeating Nazis and fascists in Europe. Nazis and Fascist war criminals went into gallows through the Nuremberg trial with Nazi and Fascist parties banning forever in doing politics in Europe. Such a deterrent policy of banning Nazi and Fascist parties did not mark any dent in Europe's democratic and secular character.

Freedom of expression, democratic rights, etc does not give any free license to anybody to do anything he likes against the country's core value. I wonder how political parties indulging in rearing anti-liberation spirit in the back of their minds are allowed to do polities in Bangladesh in a state of a situation when their top leaders and leaders of the unholy political alliance have already walked the gallows through a judicial process for committing war crimes in 1971. I equally wonder with much distress and perturbation how a political rally or non-sensicalhartal and blockade is called against the court verdict and throwing the innocent citizens to hospital's burn unit dead or alive and do not go being sternly dealt with and nipped in the bud.

Is this the pattern of our democratic norms and culture to give free license to the war criminal and their abettors and cohorts to do anything that they want to do in independent Bangladesh which Europe did not allow the war criminals and their supporters to do in the same vein? Further, it is evident from the historical record of the American Civil War (1861-65) that President Abraham Lincoln had to suspend many democratic rights and norms in order to keep the country united and also save the democracy itself. America was survived with glorious history from the curse of civil war so did Europe survived the wrath of the Great War with the fame and repute and consolidated the foundation of workable democracy in America and Europe thus giving the world, the models of functioning democracy.
Democratic practices
There is no doubt that Bangladesh is now being governed with the democratic and secular dispensation. Democratic practices in Bangladesh are widely acclaimed by the world despite Bangladesh has to still walk miles to be equal to the European or American democratic norms and practices. In the name of democratic rights; vandalism, violence, arson, looting killing; perpetrated by opposition political outfits played rampant in Bangladesh.

Equally, with a huge population burden, poor literacy rate, and multifarious other man-made problems, good governance in Bangladesh at par of Europe or America is still far away. Despite all these predicaments, the spirit of liberation cannot be in any way being undermined or compromised with any excuse or on any other pretext.

Whoever attempts to do it by using a political tool or expressing views supporting war criminals directly or indirectly or any other views repugnant to the injunction of core values and spirit of liberation, cease such rights and be apprehended sternly by the due process of law in independent Bangladesh. As I have stated earlier, Bangladesh is not drifting like a straw in the chaotic flood water. It has emerged to exist for an infinite time with its head held high in glory.

No evil power on earth with a diabolical act can look down at Bangladesh and act as a deterrent to impede the progress of Bangladesh.Bangladesh is not for war criminals and their abettors Bangladesh is not created for war criminals and their abettors to display high-handedness anymore.

They could display their high-handedness, foul mouthing, and belligerence as they were in safe-haven for long 22years under the hidden silk apron of the perpetrators behind the black curtain. Gone are those days in Bangladesh where razakars and al-badar commanders can wield their weapon and abuse our national flag mounted in their cars after grabbing and usurping state power by any dictators in uniform.

It has now become a nightmare of the distant past when the killer of Bangabandhu had surfaced as the presidential candidate with the blessing of a dictator. It is horrific to recall and think that a killer set ephemerally in the self-styled parliament in the black era of the past as the opposition leader under the tender care of the usurper of state power.

With Bangladesh prime minister Sheikh Hasina's recently earning Champions of the Earth Prize, Mother of Humanity, and other prestigious accolades for good governance and showing zero tolerance to terrorism and also graduating the country to the threshold of the middle-income level country in the golden jubilee of independence and eventually a developed country in 2041, Bangladesh's journey to the road to progress is unrelenting.

Bangladesh has overcome several low-middle income countries, including India, in several socio-economic indexes over the last four decades. The life expectancy of people in Bangladesh has increased from 47 years in 1971 to 70 years in2017 and child mortality has been remarkably reduced to 33 per thousand compared to 144 in 1971. It is heartening to note that the United Nations have graduated Bangladesh to a Developing Country from the list of Least Developed Country on Bangabandhu's birth centenary.

To celebrate the achievement on Independence Day 2021, let us all be united in waging a blitzkrieg against terrorism, corruption, fundamentalism, and partisan jingoism for guaranteeing a democratic, secular and egalitarian state of Bangladesh compatible with the values of world-class democracy. Bangabandhu undoubtedly gave freedom to a deserving nation and let us all take a vow to protect our freedom from ominous shadow and relish the taste of independence in the real sense of the term over generations to generations.

The golden Jubilee of Bangladesh's independence in March 2021 also pleasantly coincides with Bangabandhu's birth centenary. Both the great events are being celebrated in 10 days long program beginning from March 17 to march 26th 2021 with country-wide resplendence and pageantry. Long live Independence Day. Long live Bangladesh. Joy Bangla. Joy Bangabandhu. (Concluded)

The writer is a freedom fighter and former civil servant.

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