Volume 2 Issue 65| September 12, 2009 |


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Behind the Scene

From Pabna

The Trials of Badsha

Ahmed Humayun Kabir Topu

THE name of Aminul Islam Badsha is well-known in Pabna. A key figure in all progressive movements in the district, he devoted his whole life to the people of the country. This man had sacrificed a lot, been arrested numerous times and will always be remembered here.

Aminul Islam Badsha was born on April 30, 1930, in the village of Krishnapur, under Pabna municipality area. He was the elder son of Nuruzzaman Sheikh and Khabirunnesa.

Badsha had been involved in politics from a very early stage in his life. During 1943 he joined in Nikhil Bharat Chhatra Fedaration at the age of 13 when he was the student of Pabna Gopal Chandra Institute. Later, in 1948, he became a key organiser of the Language Movement in Pabna, along with others. For his involvement in the movement, the government had him arrested. He, along with other political prisoners, was held captive in Rajshahi central jail in 1948 to 1950.

The Pakistan police opened fire upon the arrested communist leaders at Khapra Ward Rajshahi jail. Seven communist leaders died and 29 others were injured. Badsha was among the ones that got shot. He carried the pain of the bullet till his death.

In 1954 Badsha was involved in the election campaign of Juktofront. He was selected as the joint convener of Juktofront Election Committee in Pabna. But the then Pakistan government again arrested him on February 22, 1954. The Juktofront won a landslide victory, and Badsha was released from jail one and half months later.

When Moulana Bhasani started the National Awami Party (NAP), Badsha joined in NAP with the vision of establishing a socialist society. Aminul Islam Badsha got married in 1958, but not before the Pakistan army, apparently not too keen on his new association, arrested him on his wedding day.

Badsha opened up a book store in Pabna town. Several types of books including textbooks and political books were sold at his shop. A socialist thinker, Badsha was a voracious reader. He had built up a library at his residence in Krishnapur village. This pursuit again displeased the Pakistan police, who arrested him for possessing books by Karl Marx and other socialist writers.

In 1964, when the NAP and Awami League launched a joint movement across the country, Badsha was again arrested again for organising the movement in Pabna. Among others National Leaders Captain M Mansur Ali, then AL leader Amzad Hossain and Abdur Rob Boga Miah were also arrested during this time. Later they were released in the face of massive public pressure.

Aminul Islam Badsha was the key man in the 'Bhutta Andolon' in Pabna in 1967. Two people died and 26 others were taken severely ill by eating corn bread in 1967. Following that incident, the Bhutta movement was launched on March 14 in 1967. A daylong strike was called on March 16 when Aminul Islam Badsha was arrested again. He was released from jail in 1968 and arrested again in 1969 during a mass upsurge.

Aminul Islam Badsha was a key organiser of freedom fighters during the liberation war. He was the high command member of the Muktijodhha Command Council. He went to India for arranging training and arms for the freedom fighters.

After Liberation Badsha tried to lead a family life. But his devotion to the people and the country had always had such fervour that his family life suffered. He never departed from politics. He was a founding member of the party Gonotontri. Till his death he was the central committee member of the Gonotontri Party.

Aminul Islam Badsha died on August 4, 1998 in his residence. The people of the district still remember his charm and his maverick ways. “Aminul Islam Badsha was a man of spirit. As a guardian he had always directed us. He was never depressed. His optimistic moods inspired us always. Aminul Islam Badsha sacrificed his whole life for the people. He will live forever in the hearts of the people,” said Md. Babi Islam, freedom fighter and president of the Pabna Diabetic association.