A Country of Rivers
I would like to thank the Star for giving space for stories about landscapes of the country. A couple of weeks ago it was of a manmade – but beautiful – landscape within the capital and last week it was on one of the many stunning rivers that grace our country. As a city dweller, it was a pleasure to see large pictures of country paths, birds and large bodies of water.
I urge the magazine and other publications to give more space to visual stories such as photo features as there is a lot to see of this country and not enough time to see it first-hand. Readers are not only looking for escape and enlightenment through words but imagery too.
I would like to congratulate the Star on “The World is Rising” which came out last week. I have never been so proud or so happy to see the word 'vagina' and the call for an uprising in a Bangladeshi publication.
Violence against women is a serious offence that has gone on for too long and the recent news of gang rapes in this country is frightening and deplorable. Raising awareness and breaking down taboos is one thing, but really creating change is the challenge we face. I was so impressed to read Eve Ensler, an American playwright and activist working on this issue, is open about her own experience of sexual abuse. She is a beacon of hope for all the young and old women out there who face or have faced abuse within their homes. I read a little more about her online and she truly is leading a revolution – a Women's Spring.
I enjoyed how well the article was written and hope it stirred the consciousness of many more good women and (more importantly) men out there. We must all rise to the occasion on February 14 and begin the change we want to see in this world.
Photo: Amirul Rajiv
The Star's cover story on 11 January 2013 focused positively on one of the magnificent achievements of our country. I was taken by surprise to see the eye-catching landscape in the magazine. It is really surprising to realise that the sight existed in our country. It will surely provide a relief to the city dwellers exhausted with their daily lives and will certainly be a buzzing centre on the weekends. At the same time we hope the place will be properly taken care of. It should not fall under the grasp of drug addicts or miscreants. It is our earnest desires that the governments will take many other steps to create such sites in the country.
Chittagong College, Chittagong
Life does not stop rolling when we women face a lot of hurdles with certain tasks we have to do in our day to day life whether it's at home or when we step outside. As Sharbari Ahmed pointed out in her article 'A Savage December, 2012', 'only time will tell!' the results of these brutal acts. But why are women always a targeted object for such appalling acts? Why are they regarded with such animosity? Some parts of the society claim that women to some extent are the one who invite these perpetrators, by their disposition, attire, etc! But is this so?
Recently I witnessed an incident while returning home from work where a group of boys were whistling and passing certain undesirable remarks at a burkha-clad girl standing under the porch of a shopping mall. I couldn't comprehend their mumbles but I could see clearly by their grimaces that the conversation was unpleasant. But how many of us can really muster the courage against such evils in society and stop these acts? How fast can our reflexes respond to such sights? Perhaps, if we could, there would be some possible reduction in such crimes such as eve teasing. And if these eve teasers were given exemplary punishments, the numbers would not steep so high.
Photo: Amirul Rajiv
We Are Not Secure
The security of our homes is a serious concern for everyone. More so when there is someone alone, like Rawshan Ara, the unfortunate woman who was killed by her guards on New Year's Eve. In an article titled “Secured?”, the Star looked at how efficient security service companies are at vetting their personnel who are eventually supposed to protect us, homeowners and tenants going about our lives. It is not a surprise to know these 'guards' are often the ones perpetrating the crimes they are supposed to stop. They have access to the building, stairways and we, occupants of these buildings, become familiarised with their faces and this gives us a false sense of security.
No one can blame Rawshan Ara for opening her door to guards she knew worked for her building. Although I am glad that the writer has shed light on this issue, I am not happy with the vague solutions we have to remedy these crimes close to home. I would like to add that sometimes these guards are suspiciously young. This security business is big business in our country and something ought to be done to implement real security systems that we can have faith in.
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