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     Volume 5 Issue 94 | May 12, 2006 |

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Dhaka Diary

Sympathy bestows blessing
It is common for everyone in Dhaka not to respond to any mishap or problem that occurs on the streets, right under their noses. However, I was proved wrong the other day when a middle-aged rickshawpuller came forward to help a street urchin. The child was crying as he had lost his way near the Shantinagar intersection. And I was the fortunate one to witness this event since I was the passenger on the rickshaw. The compassionate rickshawpuller showed his paternal affection, directed the child and even made him follow the rickshaw as I was the passenger of the same route and finally took him to Malibagh. Finally, both of us had a nice laugh when the boy rushed to his desired spot without saying a word to any of us.

Al Bike (!)...
the Mobile Chickenwalla.

It was Friday afternoon when my brother and I were on our way to the mosque for the Jumma prayers when we noticed something funny. A man on a bicycle zoomed past us, with 10-15 chickens on the back platform of his bike! The poor fowls were all upside down, as is the nature of carrying them, but I felt sorry for them nonetheless, but amused at the same time at the unique way in which they were being transported. Then I thought about AL BAIK, the fast food chain famous for their fried chicken and compared their name to what I had just witnessed. I could not help laughing all the way to the mosque.

Creating a crisis
Since Baitul Mukarram mosque is very near to my workplace I usually go there to say my Friday prayers. Last week, I went there as usual to say my Friday prayer when I saw from a distance a long queue of men praying near the entrance of the mosque. Any newcomer would have thought that the mosque must have been filled to its capacity but as a veteran, I knew I would find ample space on the third or fourth floor in the mosque. Some men have the habit of blocking the stairways or walkway and say their prayers rather than taking the trouble to climb up one or two floors. In this way they not only suffer themselves but also create problems for other devotees. During the Eid prayer the situation becomes worse. I wish the authorities would look into this problem by engaging volunteers so that they can show the way to the devotees and maintain a calm and solemn ambience.
Mohammed Sohel Hara
Olympia Palace Restaurant



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