<%-- Page Title--%> Letters <%-- End Page Title--%>

<%-- Volume Number --%> Vol 1 Num 115 <%-- End Volume Number --%>

July 25, 2003

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Answer to a question

This letter is in response to Iqbal Ahmed's letter in the July 11 issue of SWM. In his letter he condemned the Madrasa students, activists and leaders of Islamic parties, including the Khatic of Baitul Mukarram mosque for not condemning the heinous attack of the Pakistani city of Quetta. He commented that if such an attack by non-Muslims occurred in Bangladesh, they would have called a “Jihad” against all non-Muslims. Obviously his opinion is exaggerated. To take revenge on innocents rather than culprits is not in their character. They would seek true justice by the law and government on such an attack. We have gotten used to seeing incidents vehicles being attacked and innocent peoples' shops being demolished by college students including Shibir activists. It is often done in the name of protest against injustice. I ask Iqbal Ahmed whether he can show me a single violent act against Hindus in Bangladesh during the Gujrat incident which involved a madrasa student. The massacre of Quetta is really tragic and punishable but such atacks and counter-attacks happen quite often in Pakistan. However I oppose all sorts of crimes.

Faroq, Feni

SWM -- Real Issues

It is always refreshing to read SWM. The articles are important and sensitive to the socio-political situation in our country. Last week's (July 18, 2003) issue consisted of articles that were interesting and informative, such as the Cover Story on Speedy Trial Tribunal, as well as fun loving, such as the various columns that always make my Friday morning. I look forward to reading SWM every Friday because it gives me hope to think that there are so many intelligent, down-to-earth, sharp-witted, realistic and yet hopeful minds working for our country. Congratulations and continue to produce such good work.
K. Arshad

Public Reading Rooms Necessary

Last week's letter on the importance of public reading rooms caught my attention. I would like to congratulate Hadiul Islam Bhuiyan (Anwar). I, too, support the establishment of public rooms. It is an old idea for a foreign country but a new concept for us. If our government sets up some form of public reading rooms, it would be very helpful for students of all backgrounds. It would especially be helpful in rural areas where there is not enough public reading space and no suitable options at home either. Our government should ensure a proper reading environment in addition to other educational facilities. Thus reading rooms should be opened for students with a separate reading section for female students. I hope our government takes this into account and thinks about the importance of establishing public reading rooms in the near future.

Afroza Sultana
University of Dhaka

Why 'Dhaka' Diary?

I am writing about the Dhaka Diary section of your magazine, which I find very interesting. Some time back, there was a letter written by Mithun Kumar Das of CU suggesting a change in the Dhaka Diary column. It would be better if the name could be changed as it is a little biased towards the people who live in Dhaka. What about the rest of Bangladesh? I felt really happy that my own thoughts were reflected through someone else's writing but I was a little taken aback when I found no answer to the letter. I mean, it was a question that was directed towards the magazine but it did not get a reply.
Abu Sahadat Mohammad Omair

Middle Rampura
Eidgah, Chittagong

Dear Omair,
Thank you for the point you made. If we get enough anecdotes for our Dhaka Diary section from people outside Dhaka then we would be glad to change the title of the column. We are always ready for new ideas but we have to get enough responses from our contributors. Why don't you take the initiative by sending in diary accounts from Chittagong?

-- SWM

Traffic Jams

It is the monsoon season and the weather is always clammy with moisture. The last thing that we desire it to sweat, but that is an impossible task when one has to pass through Mohakhali. The place is so congested that it takes about thirty minutes to cross 200 feet distance. This takes longer when our noble army denies the free entry into Cantonment during certain hours, even after the government has given permission to let light vehicles pass during the daytime. What about the people commuting by buses or riders? Why do they have to go through this 'congested hell' when they wish to go to Farmgate? Can there not be another route that takes people from Uttara to Farmgate through Cantonment? I think the government should come up with at least a temporary solution to solve the commuters problem.

A concerned denizen

Great cover on Zafar Iqbal

Your cover story on the 4th of July on Zafar Iqbal was really impressive. Though I haven't had the pleasure of reading any of his books, the story made me really happy and gave me hope. I was inspired to read the story of the child that grew up to become a writer, and finally, a reputed personality. It is really hard to target books for all generations, and Zafar Iqbal has done a lot to master this fine art. He has a level of writing that makes little children squeal with excitement and a similar excitement can be felt in his adult targets. My complements go to Shamim Ahsan for his wonderful story that has brought out not just a fine writer, but an idol for others to follow.

Azizul Hoq, Cox's Bazar

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