On "Left in the Lurch"
I greatly appreciated the cover story "Left in the
Lurch" by Shamim Ahsan. I was shocked to read the stories
about Mozzafor, Shafiqul and Rafiqul who became disabled
after the garments factory collapse at Savar. Compensation
has been demanded for the victims but can it give them back
their lives? I think the government should implement a rehabilitation
programme for them. I was horrified to know that in the
last 15 years, some 450 people died and 2,000 were injured
in garment factory disasters in Mirpur, Uttara and other
places due to the negligence of the owners and government
authorities regarding inspection of proper facilities like
fire escapes, etc. If the government does not take necessary
steps immediately, many more workers will lose their limbs
and be fighting for their lives.
Ataur Rahman Robin On Email
Last week, while I was reading the Dhaka Diary page of SWM,
"A Woman's Tale" written by Nandini caught my
eye. I was already interested as one of my college-mates
had written it, but I also have a keen interest in gender
issues, the dowry system and other issues faced by women
in our country. These are all harsh realities of our society
but the united effort of everyone can change these social
circumstances. But for this, people must first change their
outlook. Only then can we hope to have a society with no
disparity, deprivation and exploitation. I would like to
thank Nandini for her write-up and hope to see more writings
on this burning issue.
Wasi Dhaka City College
I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to Srabonti Narmeen
Ali for her wonderful feature titled "What's Your Problem?"
published in the May 6 issue of SWM. The story was very
interesting and though short, drew the readers from start
to finish. As a human being, I always keep in mind that
everyone's life is a mixture of good and bad, joy and sorrow,
victory and defeat, laughter and tears. Good and bad are
both part of our character. If there was nothing bad then
we would not value the good. But it is our nature to always
focus on the negative aspects of a person or thing. Ali
wrote, "Is it always possible to be a hundred percent
correct all the time?" As this is quite impossible,
we should always try to find out the positive sides about
others which will also be an expression of our own broad-mindedness.
Moontaha Muneera Department of English
response to "A Real Mess"
This is in response to the letter titled "A Real Mess"
(May 6, SWM). I agree with the writer that the piece really
had a "great" effect on its readers.
However, nowhere in my letter (April 22, SWM) was it mentioned
that "it is possible to know how to have sex and not
know the result of it". What I have tried to convey
is that most teenagers are immature -- this does NOT necessarily
mean that they do not know about the consequences. It is
just that in spite of their knowledge, they are still eager
as it works like a "forbidden fruit."
Moreover, I don't understand why teenagers should not be
informed about "safe sex". I don't think it has
got anything to do with "our own culture and tradition"
and I firmly believe that there is no parent on Earth who
would want his/her beloved child to be in a situation the
four in the story were in. The fact also remains that our
society is being Westernised and I believe that many will
agree that it is better for us to prepare ourselves to tackle
the new challenges that may arise.
A Reader On E-mail
response to "Dear Devdas"
I must thank Srabonti Narmeen Ali for her article published
in SWM on May 13.But I must say that most of her views about
Devdas were totally irrelevant. Based on the actual story,
Devdas was never categorised as the person who was playing
with two women at the same time. The story clearly states
that Devdas was in love with only one woman in his life
and that was Paro. He only spent time with Chandramukhi
to channel his grief and frustration at not having Paro
in his life. I just don't get how a person can be flirting
with two women at the same time when he is drunk most of
the time. The writer called the character Devdas "spineless"
for not having the guts to stand up and fight for his love.
But Devdas actually was caught in a dilemma between his
love and his parents. He loved his parents as well as Paro.
Now what would we do if we were caught in a situation like
that where on one side we have our love and on the other
we have our parents? Is this decision so easy to make? Now
for some people it may be a simple question to answer but
Devdas was a normal human being who got scared in the confrontational
situation he was in and wanted to escape from it. The writer
clearly stated that Devdas should be hated by all of us
because of the way he treated both women but I couldn't
see where Devdas exploited women. He always had a firm control
over his morality if not over his personality. I think the
writer should see the movie a couple of times more to actually
get an idea about Devdas's character. I believe Devdas should
be praised for his immortal love. He dedicated his entire
life to the woman he loved. Now is not that a worthy payback
for his mistake? I believe that the writer got it all wrong
trying to compare a tragic romantic story with the miseries
that women nowadays endure. I think movies like "Murder"
and "Zeher" would be much more relevant for what
the writer was trying to say. "We gain immortality
by our dedication and not by our mistakes" -- I believe
that is what works for "Devdas".
Walid Ibn Matin Dhaka
hypocrisy but unawareness
In her letter (April 29, SWM), Farhana Deeba expressed her
annoyance of those who eat panta ilish in the morning
and spend the rest of the day watching Hindi movies on Pohela
Boishakh. She termed the attitude hypocrisy. But in
this age of satellite culture when Hindi movies are our
chief source of entertainment, watching Hindi films and
having panta ilish simultaneously is not due to
hypocrisy but lack of awareness. People are simply unaware
of the contradiction between the two. In this situation,
it is the duty of those who are conscious of the difference
between our culture and others' to inform those who are
not. This is the only way to stop people from watching Hindi
movies, at least on days of cultural significance for us,
when we should distinguish between our own culture and others'.
Ashik Reza Dhaka University
the right-honourable finance minister
As you have significantly increased the pay scales for the
public servants at the cost of the taxpayers' money, please
ask them to change their anti-people attitude, and to be
pro-people and friendly -- not masters like they think they
are. Please brief them on how to behave with their real
bosses -- the common people of Bangladesh -- and ask them
not to take bribe for the public services they provide to
their real bosses. Thank you very much.
M A Obaydullah Melbourne Australia
demise of Mobin
We are greatly saddened by the tragic death of Imran Ahmed
Chowdhury Mobin, a young and leading sound engineer in our
country. I can say without hesitation that he was a born
musician and a creative instrument player. He was also a
groovy bassist and played a major role in our music industry.
He was popular in both underground and mainstream music.
We will forever miss his talent and pray for his peace in
the afterlife. Bangladeshis at home and abroad want to know
more about this great personality and his successes. As
a regular reader of SWM, I suggest you bring out a special
issue dedicated to the life, struggles and successes of
Md. Toufiqur Rahman Rothkhola, Kishoreganj
Letters to the Editor, Dhaka Diary and Write to Mita, with
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SWM does not return unsolicited articles and photos. Response
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