Nochiketa, the famous singer from Kolkata, had an impact on many of us during youth. It was 1993/94; we were growing up with much happenings in socio-political scenario; music of Nochiketa being one of the elements.
I attracted and distracted many during my youth; my attitude was unconventional, rude and uncouth. Many people found me out of the ordinary, many found me impolite & loutish. My best-friend was in the first group. We were high school mates; shared same interest in literature, sports and music. We however differed on wishing each others in occasions. Wishing on birthday/s is not my type of thing so I never called my best-friend on birthdays. But now, I do want to wish and greet, but can’t; the distance between us is impossible to climb.
In 1993, my best friend gave me a surprise visit on my birthday; presented me a mixed audio cassette and books. I was touched as I did not expect it nor I will do anything similar. My attitude did not stop my best-friend from repeating the act till end of college years. On one of the cassettes I got, there was a song – Onirban by Nochiketa – tale of two college friends, one being successful in life, another not so much. My best-friend one day said in a philosophic tone “Wasim, tui bhuley jabi amader feley asha shomoy; tui ekdin amakey chinbi na.” I laughed and moved on. After college, I got into a private university despite being an awful student, mainly due to my affluent father; my best-friend decided to do honors from a local college. Days passed on, we moved on, I got new friends, so did my best-friend.
In was 2001; we met at a bus-stop; talked for half an hour, laughed over things and went in two directions – one Uttara, another Moghbazar. Lyrics of Onirban flashed back; I feared what future holds for us.
Life moved on with no regular contact with my best-friend. Then the day came. Morning hours, 2002; January 08. A close friend of mine, Raiwaya, called. She said, Wasim mon tah shokto kor; ekta kharap khobor achey. She paused for a moment and said “Anayet mara gesey aj bhor ey.” I did not know how to react to this. I took the day off from office, reached my best- friend’s home as early I could; only to see him dead in a coffin. My best-friend Anayet-ul Islam was dead.
Death and birth anniversaries does not excite me much. This one does. From that year on, 8 March has a different meaning to me. I wonder how I could wish him. I wonder whether the song Onirban has its presence in upstairs or not. I wonder whether my best-friend found a deserving best-friend or not. I wonder whether he will recognize me when I go upstairs or not.
Dekhey jaa, jaa Onirban; ki shukhey roye-chey praan……………….
My grandparents were dead long back; so I never could relate the feeling of going back to roots during holydays. My father was in the defence so I shared the joy on Eids with the neighboring kids rather than with my cousins, uncles, aunts. After my father’s retirement, we settled in Dhaka. In only two occasions, we went to our village home to celebrate Eid with my distance relatives. I did enjoy the village flavor, but felt no urge in going back on every Eid as all my Chacha. Mama, Fufu, Khala were always in Dhaka.
Thus my ignorance on people’s urge on heading towards village-home was mountainous. I never realized what the city people undergo on their voyage during Eid. On 26th November, three of my friends and I decided to experience ‘Shodor ghat er gangaam’ after midnight. We reached at Shodor ghat in 45 minutes from Gulshan; Dhaka was vacant as expected. We are mature, all in 30s, so no over speeding! Reached Shador ghat at 2 A.M. And yes, it was indeed Shodor ghat; gathering of people was all-around, everybody trying to enter the vessels docked in the river. No one could tell it was 2 A.M unless the watch came in rescue.
Some people were having meals in nearby restaurants, some trying to get into the vessels, some quarreling with the security guards. We got aboard a vessel. There were no inch to move; people were sleeping everywhere. We wanted to see the cabins but it was restricted. An 1000 taka note to the security guards did the trick and walla – we were given VIP treatment then on; went to the engine room, cabin, roof, pilot’s den, everywhere. People were sleeping everywhere including in front off the toilets. The vessel was scheduled to start at 10 A.M. the following morning but people occupied 12-14 hours prior to that! There were children sleeping in roofs, babies in the balcony with hands tied to their parents. I am a father on three years old, so I could relate instantly what a father goes through if he sees his child shaking in the cold.
Two of my friends were discussing the prospect of a vessel liner on our way back; I was wondering what makes the city people go through the pain of reaching village homes; there must be something, must be.
I woke up at 7:00 A.M on Eid day. Turned on the TV, and there was this news – a launch drowned in Meghna on its way to Bhola; 13 dead bodies including seven children were recovered. I saw that vessel on 26th! I saw people sleeping there. I saw children searching comfort on fathers’ shoulder! I knew then and there, the reminiscence will hunt me for a while.
As I read the newspaper today, the vessel that drowned was carrying excess people and water started pouring right after it started moving. It reached a quay in noon time; many people wanted to get down; security guards did not allow them to do so as some of them did not buy tickets by then. Desh TV reports, mother searching for a six year old, father searching for his two sons, sisters searching for their only brother. This Eid apparently stored only sorrow for the relatives and people who died, Allah knows, for whose fault. Close ones will surely remember the lost ones in every Eid they come by.
In my childhood, I was told, Eid ul Azha teaches sacrifices; I never could understand why slaughtering animals in roads is considered as sacrifice. I do not support the way it’s been done so I always wondered what to sacrifice. This time around, I know I have sacrificed my happiness……..I just can’t forget the faces I saw that night; I saw a two years old shivering in cold; is he dead?
My first birthday after opening an account in Facebook and surely the most ‘wish-loaded’ one since birth. I had a splendid day, credit to modern tools including sms, msn, messenger, g-talk and FB. THANK YOU ALL for making the day as special as it came out to be and NOW let me bore you to tears with thoughts on my heart / head.
It’s been 31 years and who knows how many days / months / years left. I sure would love to see another 31 before going under share teen haat maati. The last 31 years have been as smooth as one can get – no major ups and downs, no severe tragedy, no heart-breaking - nothing. I got what I anticipated and in each case, got more than what I deserve. I have been daddy’s boy, mama’s boy through out and wish to be the same in days to come, life after THIS and life after THAT.
As I look back now, I had a ‘calm & quite’ childhood – no maramari, no drugs, no alcohol; so my parents never had any issues against me. I lacked in results, BIG TIME though; I remember, me being compared with my talented cousins and bright neighboring kids on studies and failing to meet my parents expectations in the most heart-breaking ways possible. One example – getting red (below 40, out of 100) in seven subjects out of nine. Such result disasters occurred in regular basis (in every exam I took actually) and my Maa had to receive the report-card from the teachers as I always astonished my teachers by failing more measurably than the last time, each time. It’s beyond my imagination, how would my school teachers react to the fact now that I am actually a certified teacher’s trainer now! Many will collapse I assume if they know that I train primary teachers on ‘how to be more effective in a class room’!
I failed in many cases, but always tried to fulfill my parent’s dreams. My father wanted me to be a BBA, so I became one; results were no close to his expectations though. He wanted me to be a banker, so I joined a private bank in 2002 after completing bachelors in finance. In three months time, I felt banking is not my cup of tea (too hot for me) and quit.
My Maa wanted me to join NGOs, so I joined BRAC. In a week’s time, I felt, either the concept of NGO is Bhondami or I am a bigger Bhondo than them. In two week’s time, I was again on the roads (roads and highways, I used to say). Than tried my luck with a telecom but it did not work out – I am not just meant for the corporate world I guess. Suspense continued as my father said one day, “Son, it’s better for you to do the MBA now and you need to fund it yourself”. I agreed as I always do. Joined MBA program at BRAC University in early 2003. Shortly after, I felt my concepts are more viable than my lecturers’ and switched to Masters in Development Studies. I am so glad that I took that decision and it in fact changed my life. I joined BRAC University’s education department after the masters, but again, only for few months. I was than picked up by a great Canadian guy in early 2005 and worked under him for few months, career-wise, my most satisfying days. He left the country, so I left the institute and on the same day of my resignation, got a call from my childhood idol, asking me to join his team. It was like David Backham calling a school kid and asking to play football in the same club. I joined his team right away and pleased our bosses in the UK in quick time, thanks to my Development Studies background, and the saga still continues.
I have been fortunate in every aspect of life despite being a ‘below average’ achiever throughout. My childhood sweetheart agreed to marry me in spite of 10 years of torture during the ‘PREM-BHALOBASHA’ days. My parents willingly accepted her (E roshosho ami ekhono shomadhan korte pari nai, Kemne hoilo eta!). My younger brother grew up to be a wonderful professional and trying to fulfill Maa’s dreams; he recently joined Economics department of BRAC University after completing masters on the same subject. I earn my living by what I love the most – read-write-read again-analyze-write again and the circle continues. I have been doing it six days a week, day-in-day-out since August 2005 and never felt bored for a moment. Saturdays for past three years were occupied with another interesting task – teaching and carrying out professional trainings. I managed to fund for my own place and last year completed an apartment for my family. My son Ayman successfully fulfilled my lost childhood dreams by demanding a guitar and a drum-set at the age of two. His bedroom is more of a ‘jamming pad’ than a kid’s playroom. He already owns three guitars, a real-life keyboard, a mouth organ and a drum-set. When kids of his age rhymes “Hatti Matim tim”; he is more into, singing my favorite song “Shototar bilashita ar noi, eta joddo jitbar shomoy” with both hands on the guitar.
Oh, this write-up is getting lengthy; let’s cut it short – THE END.
Only 10 terrorists entered the city just an hour before and did the massacre. Nine terrorists were killed in encounters with the security forces, while a 21-year-old was captured alive.
The terrorists came in a ship and used a boat to come to the shore. Four Indians were already on the boat and the terrorists killed three of them while they used one, Amar Narayan, to handle the boat. When the boat was just three nautical miles away from shore, they slit Narayan's throat and dumped his body in the trawler. They then used their own skill to come to shore.
After landing at Fish Market at Cuffe Parade near Colaba, they formed four groups and hired taxis to reach to their destinations. A group of two young terrorists entered Hotel Oberoi, four into Taj Mahal Hotel, two stormed into Nariman House while the rest entered the CST railway station from its mail trains' gate. Their plan was to cause maximum damage and return with hostages protecting themselves.
As the attacks began, two terrorist started random firing at CST railway station while three other teams had began firing at Oberoi, Taj and Nariman House. One terrorist who sustained a bullet injury in his hand during an encounter with the police was captured. And all the rest were killed during the 3-day gun fight.
The arrested one will die during interrogations on next Wednesday unless he agrees to say, what interrogators wants him to say. Indian media, backed by intelligence forces will (successfully) put the blame on Pakistan’s shoulder. However, they will involve some more countries including Malaysia and Sri Lanka. Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba will be blamed heavily by the western media. Pakistan government will be screwed one more time as this group was formed by the Pakistani intelligence force to pinch Indian forces at Kashmir.
Ultimately, Muslims (Indian, Pakistanis, Bangladeshis and Afghans) will have to suffer the side-effect of this incident. By Muslim, I mean, liberal Muslims, not the fanatics.
Situation is, 50+ hours have gone and counting. Indian Army / security forces still could not flash out terrorists from one of the hotels in Mumbai. Probably they should ask Sharukh Khan or Ajay Devghan to do something about it now. Both these actors have experience in handling such situations, unlike them (Indian Army).
How inefficient a trained security forces can be? After 50 hours of operation, all they could find is, dead bodies inside the hotels, hello, the whole world already knows it. The Army commander claimed, the soldiers had to retaliate as terrorists started throwing grenades; what were they expecting, flowers? Indian Army said, the terrorists had map and layout of the hotel, which they did not. Sir, search google, you will find it.
Indian commando units stormed into a Jewish center, known as Chabad House. Result………..five bodies of Israeli citizens. The terrorists had executed the hostages during the commando raid, the Indian military said. No sign of terrorists there? Did not you actually go in there for the terrorists? If the hostages are killed, why the hell did you go there? Just to practice rope jumping from helicopters? Same situation in Oberoi hotel – Army raids and recovery of 24 dead bodies of only the hostages.
So, how many lives were saved by the Indian Army? None. On a contrary, over 50 people died after the Army started their operations. The people who came out, they were stuck on other part of the hotels, where terrorists had no control.
The intelligence sources had no idea about the whole thing; still no confirmation of how many terrorists was there, their nationality or name of their organizations. What do these intelligence officers do actually? Watch Bollywood movies in office time and cricket at evening? Perhaps.
Last week, Indian Navy claimed that they destroyed a pirate ship at the Gulf of Aden. Later they found out, it was a Thai fishing vessel. 13 innocent crew died on that incident. It seems, Indian security forces have lost it all. Its Navy is dumb, intelligence force dumber, Army dumbest.
‘Economics’ based answer of the much apprehended question “Why did the Chicken cross the road?”
Demand for eggs was higher on the other side of the road and the chicken figured that supply was not meeting market needs. Moreover, the chicken wanted a dominant market position at the other end as well. It wanted to create and develop the competencies required for the newly competitive market which forced it to explore other side of the market.
With an anti-risk averse mentality, the chicken wanted to break the duck’s monopoly at the other side of the road. The chicken knew, if it would set up a manufacturing unit at that side, it can grab the market with its highly specialized work force and competitive advantages on ‘economics of scale’. Furthermore, government regulations were favorable including holiday taxing at the other side of the road.
Chicken quotes from important people around
Caretaker Chief Fakruddin Ahmed: General election for all the chickens will be held on 18 December.
Siddika Kabir: To run away! I was planning to roast it for the NTV viewers.
Khaleda Zia: I had two chicken princes. One left the stage after looting half of the country. Another one will loot the rest after December 18.
Sheik Hasina: I do politics only for the chickens, not for the birds. I am prepared to die if I have to fight for the rights of the chickens.
Husain Md. Ershad: I am capable of producing no chicken!
Khondokar Delwar: I told the chicken not to cross the road. What the heck, give me a bottle of wine and a glass of deshi mod before you ask me the next question.
Army Chief: Beshi kore alu khan ar chicken ke marben na, Tara o prani.
Bangladesh Police Detective Branch: Give us ten minutes with the chicken and we'll find out.
RAB: His gang members started firing at us so we had no choice other then shooting it down. Oh, what did you ask? We thought you asked “why did the chicken died in cross-fire?”
Albert Einstein: Whether the chicken crossed the road or the road moved beneath the chicken depends upon your frame of reference.
Bob Dylan : How many roads must one chicken cross?
Sherlock Holmes: Do not concern yourself with the chicken that did cross the road; the answer lies with the chicken that did not cross the road.
John F. Kennedy: Ask not what road this chicken crossed. Ask what road you can cross for that chicken.
Bill Gates: Our soon-to-be-released Chicken '09 will not only cross roads, but will lay eggs, file your important documents, and balance your checkbook.
Chabbish e March 2008
Bangladesh tai ache je rokom chilo 1972 te. Onek buli awrano ar nijeder modhe mara mari. Folafol - Kutta gula'r ekhono bichar na hoya.
Bichar er jonno adalot lage? Kutaa gula adalot er onumoti neye hotta josh chale e chilo? Amra kothai kothai ( ami blog lekhe) shorir korom kori ar kichu na.
Bangladeshe e kono purush manush nai. Proktriti goto bhabe ache nari. Ar purush gula shobhab goto bhabe nari. Amra pari chila chili korte, eke onne r pichone lagte.
Haate bala pere gura uchit amader. Oi sector commander der o tai. Shanbadik der o tai. Shobar. Shobar.
Amar Bangladesh. Amar Bangladesh. Amar Bangladesh. Amar Bangladesh.
What’s happening now will be reflected both in short term blisters and long term scars
It’s Friday and once again we are left with more time than usual to contemplate our future...near & imminent future. Lets mix a few feelings (all negative, I must add) in our otherwise monotonous daily life or should I say daily struggle through traffic and threat of economic collapse.
These are my recent observations-
The caretaker govt. advisors 'weakest link' - Law Advisor Mainul Hosein. With his frequent comments that are not well thought through and very noticeably not communicated or agreed upon by other advisors. I am referring to his recent desire to set up a Truth Commission for
businessmen. For who? For big name businessmen who have built colossal empires on corrupt practices and tax evasion? Yes, all those who have taken thousands of millions Taka from the banks and fled overseas now. But I think we should leave this subject entirely, as we have realized, time and time again, Law advisor Mainul as being nothing less than bi-polar and what
he says or does is actually out of his own control ! He needs medication!!
What we really need to focus on is the 30-40 percent of population who have been deprived of simple living..food & shelter. With recent growth in the economy only reflected in the affluent business community who joined hands with recent (corrupt yet past) political parties, its 'the poor and the destitute' who have continuously been ignored, their basic rights to live........unanswered . Facing one disaster after the other - natural and man-made has created a super thick skinned Bengali but a the same time a very pessimist and selfish one...like myself. @))*
2008 is the year to make or break this country of ours. And what are we prepared to do....this includes everyone- ARMY, ADVISOR and GENERAL PUBLIC......can we not join forces even during these critical times? And turn what has been bad for most into sometime good for all? Probably not....
Shame on us.......we are dogs and so deserve to be treated such! By the government they tries to govern us, by political parties and even by foreign governments,....anyone and everyone who stands higher the sea levels....has the God given right to kick us as they so desired
Mind my words...fellow Bengali's....the next devastation heading our way is the industrial collapse and followed by the bargain price sellout by these business houses who are in self exile and enjoying the fruits of their plunder. And would not care if they are unable to return to their Sonar Bangla.
If Shakespeare were alive during these events, he would have no shortage in writing tragedies....................Bangladesh.
My 18 months old son finds my PC a desirable place to hang around. Whenever he finds a chance, runs towards the chair, sits after couple of attempts and starts pushing the keyboards. He already figured out that mouse has a pointer, so he moves the devise all the way around.
One Point not to be taken for granted, by ALL three sectors in dispute- DO NOT abuse you're freedom !!!!
1. Students should really stick to their books and not accelerate any dispute that would jeopardize the future of the country and its people's livelihood. Or explode into life threatening situations for any and all.
2. The Press should NOT dramatize news with front page gore & galore inorder to provoke the general public into a frenzy
3. The Army and Police should exercise more wit and less muscle even if the situation desires immediate control and clap down
Now, I ask you all to ponder on a few post action/events and thoughts - who's action was most damaging? Landing the entire country in this precarious and uncertain times!
Was it the junior Army personnel who had abused his power? Was it the rioting by the so called 'career' students who burnt down public properties like cars , buses and buildings that led to a curfew which not only stopped the country, but all caused shortage of food and resources for people to meet their daily needs?
This government is doing a great job; bickering over small issues would shade the big picture for all of us. I really can not understand why after all that we have witnessed and seen; our inability to protest peacefully and lawfully evades even the so called educated next generation, i.e. university students! Are they really deserving to be in University or these
'career students just political pawns?
What the current government is doing is colossal by any account and that too with nature and infrastructure all standing in its path as huge obstacles. Yet instead of joining hands and helping every way we can, we take an incident small or big, that could have been easily handled, to such a level that it ends up locking ourselves (innocent civilians) indoors and paralyzing the entire country.
The Army Chief, Chief Advisors - all made statements to bring fair justice to the incident BUT no, our so called 'gene pool', 'future generation' decided to take it in their hands and riot in the streets of Dhaka. Shame on all of you ! What hopes your parents had in you have faded into the darkness that has become a daily way of life for Bangladeshi. The government needs to round up all the culprit teachers who have led this protest (destroyed property) and lock them up like their mentors who are already in jail counting the days behind bars. Is Bangladesh a unique one, where the university teachers teach and provoke students to destroy public properties?
As a common person of Bangladesh, with no political clout or preference or affiliation but love for safety and peace; I ask all PRO Bangladeshi to express your wants and rights for a safe and peaceful society.
-City dwellers suffered on 23 August as the prices of essential commodities, especially vegetables, marked a sharp rise because of short supply. Prices of many vegetables went up by about 50 per cent in some kitchen markets on the day.
-Law enforcement agencies raided DU dormitories on 22 August night and early 23 August, allegedly beating up some university staff and students on suspicion of 'disturbing peace'.
-An unknown number of students were injured at Jahangirnagar University as law enforcement agencies baton charged Jahangirnagar University (JU) students who failed to leave their dormitories within the deadline.
-Over 50 persons were injured in Rajshahi yesterday as law enforcers baton charged people who were out their homes during the curfew.
-In Rajshahi, a case was filed with Motihar Police Station accusing 2500 RU students of Wednesday's violence on the university campus and in its surrounding areas.23
-Production in garment factories in the areas surrounding Dhaka and Chittagong continued partially during the curfew, but most of the units located in the capital were kept closed.
The learning from history is that no one learns from it.