Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 2, Issue 11, Tuesday September 7, 2004







Can we stop it?

With the constant threats of bomb blasts making our life unliveable in this metropolitan city, our minds too have narrowed down to the width of a grimy lane of some dilapidated city. There is nothing much that the general people dare to do. The common people can't protest because they are too scared to lose their life for a cause that they believe would probably never realise. Moral degradation has reached such a humiliating stage, that political involvement appears as a scar in any person's unstained character record.

Today's young people are not really interested in taking an active role in their country's onerous attempt to free itself from the ominous claws of terrorism. I have seen a lot of people leaving the country for good in the past few years. Although some initially left the country,thinking that they would return soon after they are done with their studies, the same people have changed their thoughts over the last one-year. A lot of them are applying for immigrant status in affluent countries of the west. Many young people are fleeing to countries like Australia and Canada because they believe that it would be easier to continue living in those countries after graduation. Youths from the well off segment of the society are choosing England to be their next habitation. Mothers of young daughters are rummaging the world for grooms, who can take their daughters to live in the west. There has been a sudden upsurge of popularity of Bangladeshi expatriates in western countries among households with grown-up daughters. Our mothers are even ready to part with their daughters forever only if they are assured that their children would be given a secure life away from this country.

While I myself ponder over the future of my future generation, I shudder. Where would I be raising my kids? In a country where everyone's life is at stake? In a country where innocents are shot dead on streets, alleys, homes, parks and public meetings? I dare not dream a safe future for my children. Young people of this country are too desperate to boot their own land and embrace a country where they don't really belong. Who knows, maybe I too would run away from this land in quest of a safe life for me and my future descendants

Tamanna left for London two years back with a plan to graduate from a good university and then return to Bangladesh to serve her dearest country. She returned Dhaka last June on a summer vacation and but since then has remained housebound. Her dad panics if she steps outdoors, her mom frets if she's late from shopping, and her brother tends to accompany her even to the superstore only a block away! Come on, this country is in an abyss of apprehension, crime and insecurity…
Over a period of only two months, her love has been torn in half and she has started to plan to get married to a red passport holder from London. She keeps repeating that she misses the tempting life of fashionable London; and she has finally begun to grasp the fact that although at times she genuinely yearns to be with her parents and childhood buddies, that loss fails to overpower her longing to lead a secure life in England. There are thousands of other girls and guys who think like Tamanna today…

We haven't kept records of the thousands of promising brains that drained out of this country because of its current deplorable state. And there would be a day when no qualified youth would stay back in this country to free it from poverty, terrorism, and corruption and moral degeneration unless we do something meaningful to retain these youths. Give these young people full of promises one opportunity to serve this nation, which is just now submerged by distress.

By Wara Karim

Reader's Chit
The Trap Map!

How does one put an end to this madness? How does a person keep the loved ones safe from such onslaught of hatred? Is there a place that hails justice and supports the spirit of? Is it too much to ask for or are our lives such invaluable pawns to be discarded with total disregard in this your filthy game for power and control? Year after year, day after day, minute after minute it all seems like a downhill journey. It is as if we are stuck in a quagmire sinking slowly. Before the inevitable fade-out we hopelessly witness the systematic encirclement of evil that is diabolically strangling our esprit and our very existence.

Spellbound by the horror and paralyzed by their cruelty we are stranded here alone with life in our hand at the middle of nowhere. And in the end one way or the other it is us who are the ultimate victims and it is always us who constantly pay the highest price and bear the foremost losses. The baneful game of politics of Bangladesh has poisoned the country's moral structure and some high profile politicians' lust for power and control have made thousands martyrs and paralyzed the mobility of generations. Everywhere you look around, there lies a beast to get you for who you are. No one to trust no authority to respect and no one to support. Every story here concludes with a question. The access to answers is nothing but an unaffordable dream for the countrymen. The personalization of authorities and the constant practice power-oriented politics has deliberately pushed the countrymen into a grave darker future, as the playmakers of Bangladeshi politics are incapable of thinking beyond their greed, revenge and appetite for power. As a result getting into power anyway they can have become the key priority of the political parties of Bangladesh. As a result the country's needs goes astray and the public demand and urges fall under the deaf ear.

This has driven the general law biding, decent, hard working, patriotic and peace loving citizens, who construct the greater and better half of Bangladesh, out of the mainstream and from the decision making process. This lack of concern for public sentiments has created a space between the general public and political parties, which has been filled by corrupters and crooks. As a result it is the citizens, who are trapped in the world of harassment, corruption, oppression, conspiracies, crime and conviction. It is the average city dwellers who either gets blown up by bombs or get harassed by their hartal. On one hand we are losing our loved ones by some horrific acts of terrorism while on the other it is the same old us who the victim of chaos and anarchy that are created with the excuse of protest of such terrorist acts. It seems like a game between rioters and terrorists where the public concern eventually gets crucified.

How do we end this? We do not know. But we will have to try. Otherwise three lines from three different songs, respectively by Bob Dylan, Manic Street Preachers and Five for Fighting, should indicate our coming. "The future looks thin" and " if you tolerate this your children will be next" until then there will always be "certainty of uncertainty in all of our eyes".

By Obaidur Rahman




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