Editor's Mind

Money is no problem

Publish: 10:00 AM, 19 Nov, 2022


Sunday morning. I was going to office from home. The traffic was really bad as it was the first working day of the week. In the meantime, I was doing some office work in the car. Suddenly a friend of mine called. He said, "Have you heard the news? There is no money in any bank. Eight banks are going bankrupt. I also have some money in the bank. What should I do now?" Just a little later a relative form Rangpur called and said, there is no money in the bank. I only have a little money in the bank. It is the savings of my life. What do I do now? While going to the office I received phone of a few others like this. Everyone is anxious, scared. One of my friends is the managing director of a private bank. I called him to find out what is actually happening. He laughed out loud. He said, "Brother, you also started believing in these Facebook rumors? A group is spreading this fake news. There is no liquidity crisis in any bank." I was reassured by his words. For a moment, it seemed like 1974. At that time, a reputed newspaper published a picture of Net Folded Basanti. It was said that Basanti had no clothes. To hide the shame, Basanti throws her body in the net. The news caused a stir at that time. To attack Bangabandhu's government, the Basanti drama was staged at that time. After August 15, 1975, many untrue, ugly and offensive words were spread in the name of Basanti in the field of politics. Sheikh Hasina returned home with the responsibility of Awami League on May 17, 1981. It was Sheikh Hasina who exposed the lies about Basanti. She herself went to Basanti's house. Basanti was a disabled person. That picture was fake. That picture of Basanti was made at that time to create a negative perception about the Awami League government. Basanti's picture is perhaps the best example in the history of unjournalism in Bangladesh. None of those who used Basanti to play this dirty game did anything for Basanti. Sheikh Hasina had built a house for Basanti. In 74 there were no social media like Facebook, YouTube etc. A picture in the newspaper destroyed a lot of Awami League. Now is the age of social media and these social media have become a rumor factory. The latest rumor is that there is no money in the bank. If you look at the social media now, it will seem that Bangladesh is probably on the verge of bankruptcy. The date of the fall of the government is also being given. The most terrible thing is that all such rumors are being spread, which are creating panic in the public mind. It is worth noting that the rumors are first spread through social media, then the opposition leaders are speaking about it and finally it is being presented in the mainstream media. You are being forced to believe false information.

Before spreading the rumor that there is no money in the bank, another rumor was spread that we have no money in our reserves. Bangladesh is on the verge of bankruptcy. 48 billion dollars was the highest reserve of Bangladesh. It was something we were proud of. But due to the corona epidemic and the global crisis, the reserve is decreasing. Not only Bangladesh, due to the global crisis reserves are decreasing in all the countries. A country is considered safe if it has enough foreign exchange reserves to cover three months of import expenses. It is possible to meet more than four months of import expenses with the net reserves that Bangladesh currently has. So there is no reason to panic about the reserve. According to the IMF, China has the largest foreign exchange reserves in the world. At the end of October, the country's reserves were 3052 billion dollars. But in July, the country's reserves were 4 thousand billion dollars. In just three months, China's reserves have decreased by about one thousand billion dollars. India is one of the top 10 countries in terms of foreign exchange reserves. India's reserves stood at $599 billion at the end of June. By the end of October, it had decreased to 520 billion dollars. Interestingly, the United States is known as the richest country in the world. But the United States is not among the first ten countries in terms of reserves. US reserves are 242 billion dollars. The World Bank has published a list of countries that are in crisis in terms of foreign exchange reserves. Quoting the report of the World Bank, a report of Reuters said - Sri Lanka is the most economically distressed country in the world. The country is now almost bankrupt. According to the Reuters report, Lebanon, Russia, Suriname and Zambia are defaulting countries along with Sri Lanka. More recently, Belarus has also entered the list of defaulters. The World Bank has also published a list of countries that are in severe economic crisis at this moment. The World Bank has also published a list of countries that are in severe economic crisis at this moment. The countries named in the list include Argentina, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan, Tunisia and Ukraine. Readers note that Bangladesh is not in this list. So why the desperate attempt to make Bangladesh bankrupt? A few days ago, the IMF delegation visited Bangladesh. It was during this visit that rumors were spread that the IMF was not giving loans to Bangladesh. Some politicians took advantage of this rumor that was planned through social media. After that, some of the leading media of the country rushed to the ground to institutionalize the rumours. An economist-turned-politician turned IMF spokesperson. He announced that 'Bangladesh is not getting loans.' When his statement was proven to be false, no media asked him 'how did you give such false information'. The thing is, if you keep lying against the government, you are the conscience of the nation, a brave man. And if you show the truth, you are an agent of the government. All of them are trying to make Bangladesh crippled, discolored and bankrupt. But why? In the capitalist world, it is said that the market and money are at the root of everything. It goes without saying that those who are constantly spreading misinformation against Bangladesh abroad are not doing this for nothing. They are being petted regularly with money. There is also lucrative money behind the planned rumors that are being spread now. Why is so much money being spent to hurt Bangladesh? The reason is very simple and clear. These rumors have been taken to the level of art to achieve political goals. The political goal is to oust the Awami League government from power. Elections are the only democratic way to remove a political party from power. That's why public opinion needs to be formed. The ruling party has to be defeated and removed from power by uniting the people in the vote. But now a different process has started to remove the government from power in Bangladesh. This process has several steps. The first step is to continue spreading false and baseless information against the government on social media. These propagandas must be made 'viral'. In the second phase, the anti-government political parties will campaign on the basis of those propaganda. Those rumors will be justified. In the third step, some of the mainstream media will spread the crisis, failure, etc. based on the statement of the opposition party. The fourth step is some civil servants who are restless with the greed for power, will talk about it regularly on talk shows and write columns. The fifth step is to go directly to the people and spread false information about everything. The sixth step is to create some artificial crisis. The seventh step is to put pressure on the government by spreading propaganda against donor countries, organizations and Western countries. If you can complete these seven steps, you’ll be successful. this is the politics of Bangladesh right now. The flow of events is visible up to the fourth step. But we are ignoring the events of the fifth step. A few days ago a man called me from Saudi Arabia. He often calls me after reading my writing. Advise me on many things. He told me that the people of BNP-Jamaat are holding meetings and talking to the expatriate brothers here. They are misleading these people who are determined to keep their families happy in the country by working hard.


He said that expatriates are being told that it is not safe to send money through banking channels. Your money will be lost. You give yout money to me, I will send the money through hundi. According to him, Saudi Arabia is now forced to send money through hundi. Sending money through hundi takes 10 minutes. After taking the money from the immigrant brother, that politician is calling his agent in Bangladesh to send the money to the family of the immigrant. That agent is then sending the money to the given address. To ensure that the family member receives the money, the worker at the other end says 'Alhamdulillah.' This is how the 'Hundi Mission' is running in the Middle East countries including Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Oman, Jordan. Money is coming in illegal cahnnels.


And what is happening in the country? BNP and Jamaat leaders are also behind the rumor that there is no money in the bank on Sunday and Monday. A well-known BNP leader in Dhaka wrote on his Facebook page, 'I went to withdraw five lakh taka from the bank. There is no money in the bank......' I saw such Facebook status of five BNP leaders. There are variations in wording and figures of money but the main point is the same. A BNP leader held a staff meeting at his house and said that everyone will go to the bank and withdraw whatever money they have. In this way, an attempt is being made to put the banking sector in a crisis. However, in this case, Bangladesh Bank's prompt action has to be appreciated. Bangladesh Bank did not allow the rumors to spread by reassuring the public through quick press releases and press conferences. If the government or Bangladesh Bank could take such steps with dollars, then the country's dollar situation would not have been so fragile. That day an economist was saying, "Dollar" has now become a business like the stock market. Many are buying dollars and keeping them at home in the hope of profit. Here too BNP-Jamaat's political cunning strategy. A lot of wealthy leaders and workers of these two parties have bought and stored dollars from the market. The economist was saying that the sale of dollars should be stopped without passports, foreign tickets and visas. How does a person buy dollars like rice, dal, ginger, salt? On the current trend, no matter how many dollars are released to stabilize the market, the crisis will not end. Now a united political force has been brought into the field. Their job is to create a crisis by buying dollars from the open market. It is also a profitable business for them. The question is, where are the BNP or Jamaat activists getting the money to buy so many dollars? To answer this question, it is necessary to examine the characteristics of BNP's general meetings in recent times. There is no doubt that the public meetings held by BNP in various cities are attended by a large number of people. The activists are joining there. Every rally is preceded by an unnecessary drama of transport strike. This is causing problems for the ruling party instead of benefit. BNP workers from different districts are coming to the city where the rally will be held two or three days before. I was watching an interview of some workers in the Faridpur rally on the digital platform of 'Bangladesh Pratidin'. The workers there say that they came to join the rally three days ago. Who is paying the cost of their meals? Obviously the party. On the previous day, a traditional picnic festival was held at the gathering place. We are witnessing the tempting scene of cooking Biriyani, Tehari, Khichuri. 10 to 15 crore of money are being spent on each rally. Where is BNP getting so much money? On July 28, BNP submitted their income and expenditure account to the Election Commission. There we saw that last year the income of the party was 84 lakh 12 thousand 444 taka. The accounts stated that the money came from monthly subscriptions by party members, sales of nomination forms, donations from individuals and institutions, and dividends from FDR. At the same time, the party has spent 1 crore 98 lakh 47 thousand 171 taka. It has been mentioned in the statement of accounts filed by BNP that this expenditure has been incurred in various sectors including salary and bonus of employees, crore paper bills, office expenses. According to BNP's income-expenditure calculations, the party is saddled with a debt of Tk 1 crore 14 lakh 34 thousand 727 crore. The leaders of the party make speeches every day saying that Bangladesh is becoming Sri Lanka. But the truth is not Bangladesh but that party is becoming Sri Lanka. How can a political party with liabilities on paper be blowing 10-15 crore rupees a week? Ziaur Rahman, a military hero who founded BNP, said, 'Money is no problem.' Zia formed BNP with the help of military intelligence while sitting in the cantonment. Brought people of other parties with money. The late BNP leader Barrister Maudud Ahmed has written an allegation that he used to threaten businessmen and industrialists to collect money to form the party. To eliminate Awami League and establish BNP as a political party he said, 'Money is no problem'. This is the motto of BNP politics. Now again Bangladesh is seeing the practical application of 'money is no problem' theory. BNP-Jamaat has taken over almost the entire social media with money. The government has been put under pressure by hiring lobbyists. The United States has banned RAB. The ban was given on International Human Rights Day on December 10 last year. BNP has called a mass rally in Dhaka on December 10. If you listen a little, you can hear the suppressed cheers of the BNP leaders. On that day another big ban is coming on Bangladesh. This ban will be more severe than last year's ban. I also hear that Bangladesh will be shocked. BNP is talking happily not about the December 10 rally, but about the upcoming ban. Money talks. Now its truth is also seen. Ambassadors of different countries are now speaking the language of BNP leaders. BNP is pouring money to oust the government. Money is no problem. But where is the money coming from? A few days ago, I heard the leader of Awami League saying, "BNP leaders are taking huge sums of money by threatening businessmen." The businessmen are not stupid children that you’ll scared them and thay will give you crores of money. I do not agree with the idea of fear-mongering and taking money from businessmen. Some businessmen have now become BNP lovers. After the elections in October 2001, the 'Hawa Bhavan' Central Business Syndicate was formed. All these traders were booming. After Awami League came to power in 2009, almost all of them became Awami League overnight. The company that late Syed Ashraf refused to approve the construction of the flyover due to the alleged involvement of Hawa Bhaban, the businessman close to Hawa Bhaban got the approval for the flyover. What are they doing now? Where is the investment of the company that owns many banks at the same time? At home or abroad? Nobody cares to know that. Many business groups are now having photo sessions with ministers in five-star hotels dressed as Awami League supporters. At night, BNP expatriates are sending Nazrana for the Prince. Such allegations are heard in various discussions. Those who are smuggling thousands of crores of money by over in voicing in the name of garments are gloating with the praise of the government and giggling with a donation check of 1 crore, but who do they talk to at late night on their secret phone? Does the government not know about the businessmen who are busy entertaining BNP asking the nomination for Awami League? Several businessmen are supplying BNP with fuel to keep it running while lamenting that exports are being stopped due to fuel crisis. What is being investigated about them? Those who are rehabilitating the 'money is no problem' theory to make Bangladesh a failed state, not the government, are harmful to the state and the people. If the free flow of illegal money is not stopped in the crazy politics of destruction, the situation is bound to go beyond the control of the government.


Editor's Mind

Messi couldn't do it alone, can Sheikh Hasina do it?

Publish: 10:00 AM, 26 Nov, 2022


Dilip Barua is a lucky politician. Even if he does leftist politics, he moves around power. When the BNP-Jamaat alliance was in power, he visited China as a travel companion of the then Prime Minister Begum Zia. When the Awami League government was formed in 2009, he was given the responsibility of Ministry of Industries. The technocrat served as minister for five years. He is the everything of his communist party. No staff, no seats, yet he had the rare fortune of becoming a minister. Since the 2018 elections, the Awami League has followed the policy of walking alone. Therefore, the leftist party leader is alone. Worn out and abandoned. Anyone who is in such trouble should be upset. So was Dilip Barua. That's why he gave an angry interview to BBC. In that interview, he said, "Considering the national and international situation, there are many limitations to have fair elections in Bangladesh. There may be no election at all". Barua is a veteran politician. In an interview with the BBC, he spoke about his disdain for the Awami League government, just like the apprehension he spoke about the election, it cannot be dismissed. Rather, he spoke frankly and openly about the fear of the future in the politics of Bangladesh.  


The twelfth national parliament election in Bangladesh is scheduled to be held in January 2024. A year and two months before the election, the political arena in the country is slowly heating up. Western countries, including the United States, are openly talking about the election. The civil society is sleepless worring about the election. The Election Commission has announced that they are determined to prevent elections like Gaibandha. In everyone's initiatives, arrangements, anxiety and speech, it seems that the main goal of a collective power is to thwart the next election, not to hold a fair election. The main and infallible weapon to oust the Awami League government is just not to allow the election to take place. Even some of the ruling parties are active so that the next parliamentary elections do not take place. Even in the administration, the evil power of disrupting the elections has spread. For the sake of argument if we assume that eventually the election was not held, then what will happen? According to the constitution of Bangladesh, national parliament elections are supposed to be held every five years. It is a constitutional obligation. If this election is not held, a constitutional vacuum will be created in the country. Unconstitutional forces will get a chance to come to power. The constitution will be torn apart again. An undemocratic and unelected government will come to power. Is there a concerted effort to create such a situation? Is there another one-eleven in progress in the country?


Awami League has won all the last three elections. Among them, the 2008 election is one of the best elections in the history of Bangladesh. In the 2014 elections, BNP boycotted the elections demanding a non-partisan caretaker government. More than half of the constituencies were elected as members of parliament without a vote. The Jatiya Party partially participated in those elections. But BNP could not prevent that election. A total of four elections were held in Bangladesh without the participation of major parties like in 2014. BNP boycotted the May 7, 1986 elections. Awami League participated in that election. In the face of certain defeat, the ruling Jatiya Party leader Ershad, a military hero, stopped announcing the election results. Later, he fabricated results and then broadcasted that on radio and television. That election is known as media cue election. The life of the parliament formed through the election of 86 was only one and a half years. The first session of that Parliament was held on July 10. But on December 6, 1987, the President dissolved Parliament in the face of intense opposition. Neither Awami League nor BNP took part in the parliamentary elections of March 3, 1988. A coalition of opposition parties led by A. S. M. Abdur Rab and the Freedom Party, the fascist party of the self-confessed murderers of the Father of the Nation, took part in that election. There was no voting in that election. Mock results are declared. The first session of the Parliament was held on 25 April 1988. On December 6, 1990, this parliament was abolished by the fall of Ershad. Another election was held on 15 February 1996 without the participation of all major political parties. In the wake of unprecedented rigging in the Magura, Mirpur by-elections, the Awami League started a movement demanding a non-partisan, neutral caretaker government. At that time, BNP said 'No one is neutral except madmen and goats.' Begum Zia remained steadfast in her election decision despite the intense mass agitation. Almost all political parties of the country including Awami League, Jatiya Party, Jamaat boycotted that election. Apart from BNP, Freedom Party, a group of self-confessed murderers, took part in that election. In the face of intense mass agitation, there was actually no vote on February 15, 1996. 49 candidates of BNP were elected unopposed in the election. Without a vote, the commission announced a shocking result, dividing the seats between the BNP and the Freedom Party. The commission took 5 days to do this. The Parliament was convened on the night of March 19 by publishing a gazette notification. The lifespan of this parliament was only 7 days (4 working days). This parliament was dissolved by passing the non-partisan Caretaker Government Bill. One such concept that the parliament cannot complete its term without the participation of any major political party was established in the politics of Bangladesh. This was the main source of motivation for BNP's election boycott in 2014. Not only BNP but also most of the leaders and candidates of Awami League thought that this election is an emergency measure. Another fresh election will be held soon. That is why Awami League candidates tend to win without votes. Most of the Awami League candidates refrain from campaigning and spending money. Attempts are made to dismiss the opponent with a small amount of money. In some places, the opposition was removed from the election by using the administration and threatening. As a result, there was no voting in more than 150 constituencies. Voters were not enthusiastic even in the polling places. A strange thing happened after that election. The parliament formed on January 5, 2014 completed its term. The reason for this was the negative politics of BNP. The people of this country expressed mistrust against BNP's incendiary and destructive politics by accepting that election. However, there was another thing behind it. Good governance and development by the Awami League from 2009 to 2013. People's lives were getting easier. Trade was expanding. People didn't agree to change that. Didn't want to jump into the sea of uncertainty. The 2018 election was a conspiracy to tarnish the Awami League. Even if that election was the best fair election in the world, Awami League would have won. BNP participated unconditionally in the 2018 elections. to protect the existence of the party. Accepting Dr Kamal Hossain as the leader, BNP participated in the election knowing the sure defeat. But some overzealous sycophants strangled the prospect of a fair election under a party government. Those who did this in that election, they are actually the enemy of democracy. If that election was good, this crisis would not have happened today. Western countries would not have had the opportunity to talk about elections like this. Now BNP has got an opportunity. They want to take Bangladesh in an unconstitutional tunnel in the name of boycotting elections. Now the real game of politics is the fight to not hold the election. Here the field fight is only a show. The real game is behind the scenes. Whereas Awami League is always clumsy and immature. Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader is now branding the slogan 'Khela Hobe' every day. Invented by Shamim Osman, marketed by Mamata Banerjee of West Bengal, what game is the general secretary of Awami League talking about by saying this much-talked-about slogan repeatedly? Is he shooting at the wrong target? Because this time the game is not a competition of who will win the election but a game of no election. The game of protecting the constitution. Who will win this game?


Now the whole country is trembling with World Cup fever. Arguments on who will win the world cup? Who is a better team? Brazil or Argentina? Just as sport is uncertain, so is politics. On Tuesday, after a meeting and came to the office around four in the afternoon. As soon as I entered the office, I saw a commotion. Then I learned it was about Argentina-Saudi Arabia match. That's why my colleagues were so excited. Justin, Rifat and others were watching the game wearing Argentina jerseys. The gap between Argentina and Saudi Arabia is huge. Argentina's football heritage is amazing. On the other hand, Saudi Arabia's big achievement is to play in the World Cup finals. No one had any doubt that Argentina was going to win. The thing to be seen was how many goals Argentina scores. Lionel Messi is one of the best players in the world after Pele and Maradona. A living legend of football. Apart from the World Cup trophy, there is no other achievement in football that Messi has not achieved. Many enlightened sports critics say that Argentina should win the World Cup trophy for Messi. If Messi does not win a World Cup, it will be a misfortune for football. Lionel Messi's Argentina went undefeated in 36 consecutive matches before coming to the World Cup. Therefore, Argentina has come to Qatar on a mission to win the World Cup for the third time. After the start of the game, it seemed that the world's third football power would easily win against Saudi Arabia. Within 10 minutes after the start of the game Messi scored and made a a unique record.  The football wizard entered the elite club having scored in four consecutive World Cups. But who knew then that many surprises were yet to come. Just 5 minutes of the second half changed everything for Messi's Argentina. Saudi Arabia won by creating one of the great upsets in the history of World Cup football. In the first match, all the Argentinian players, except Lionel Messi, looked dull and lifeless. Messi is lonely. His teammates are not supporting him. This game made one thing clear, that a superhero cannot bring victroy alone. A coordinated team work and everyone’s contribution is required. Just like sports, politics also requires team work. A leader needs trusted, tested, competent allies. It requires compromise, understanding and coordination. After watching the Argentina-Saudi Arabia game, the picture of Bangladesh politics appeared in my mind. Messi was alone in that game. He was not getting enough support by his teammates. Similarly, I think that Sheikh Hasina is alone in the politics of Bangladesh. There are no qualified people to help her in the government or in the party. Awami League government is running the country for three consecutive terms. In 14 years Bangladesh has reached a unique height and this achievement belongs to only one person. That is Sheikh Hasina. She is alone taking the country forward. There were also a few visible allies in the first and second terms. But coming to the third term, it seems that Sheikh Hasina is fighting alone.


The second most important person in a government after the Prime Minister is the Finance Minister. Boris Johnson appointed him (Chancellor of the Exchequer) as Finance Minister. As Finance Minister, he was widely praised for his innovative initiatives during the Corona period. In an interview with the BBC at the time, Rishi said, "The most sleepless, anxious and unhappy person in the world is the finance minister of a country." Jamie Hunt is the new finance minister in the Rishi government. On Tuesday, he said in an interview with the Guardian, "No finance minister in this world has a chance to breathe." Joe Biden has created a surprise by being elected as US President. Appointed Janet Yellen as Finance Minister (Secretary of Treasury). She is the first woman finance minister in US history. The United States has recently been plagued by severe economic crisis and inflationary pressures. In an interview with the Washington Post, Janet Yellen said, "This responsibility is such that you can't think about yourself for a moment." This is the situation of the finance ministers around the world. But things are quite different in our country. Receving any news from the finance minister is a big deal now a days. A 'missing notice' can be issued for him at any time. He has no role in overcoming the crisis. He does not even know why he is the finance minister. Commerce Minister has no control over the market. His words carry no weight and value. There is a lot of discussion within the Awami League about how big a burden the Minister of State for Power is for the government. The railway minister has made his own constituency the headquarters of the railways. Despite his bride's interference in ministry work, he refuses to consider it a breach of oath. He did not realize the need for resignation. The foreign minister is now teaching journalism. Bangladesh have never had such a talkative foreign minister. Messi lost against Saudi Arabia. With all these players (ministers), will Sheikh Hasina be able to defeat the 'election boycott' conspiracy? What will these ministers do in a bigger crisis? Some of the ministers (not all) are causing more trouble to the government. The government is getting discredited because of some people. Sheikh Hasina knows more than what we know about the qualifications and limitations of the ministers. She knows that the job of the ministers is now to cut the ribbon, sit on the decorate seat and give speech as the chief guest at various events. Getting the job done by the bureaucrats. If the house helper once understands that the people of the house are helpless without him, he will definitely take advantage of it. Their demand continues to grow every day. When the bureaucrats realized that the ministers were 'incompitent' (borrowing the language of late Suranjit Sen Gupta), they started to increase the list of demands every day. They are building a wall between the government and the people. There is a fundamental difference between politics and sports. In football or cricket, the fans have no role except to clap their hands or shout loudly. Fans can't make their team win. But in the game of politics, supporters are real. Supporters are the power. Only the supports came make the team win. And to create supporters requires organization and good work. Supports increase when the organization is strong. The party becomes popular. And if there is no organization, even great leaders also disappear. The most recent example of this is the recent defeat of Mahathir Mohamad, the founder of modern Malaysia, in the Malaysian elections. Mahathir was defeated for the first time in his 53-year political career. Because he had no organization. This 92-year-old veteran politician could not build the new political party properly. Awami League is still surviving, because of the organization of the grassroots. But now looking at the district and upazila mass gathering, does it seem that the organization of Awami League is in order? Or the opportunists have taken over the Awami League. There is no triumph of youth in the organization. Those controversial old faces are coming back again and again. Will this organization be able to support Sheikh Hasina in the electoral game? This game is going to be hard. This game will not be like 2014 or 2018. In the game of the field and the game of politics, one thing is exactly the same. Miracles. Many legends single-handedly changed the fortunes of the game. For example, Maradona in the 1986 World Cup. Even in politics sometimes great men emerge. The people are excited at the tilt of his finger. All conspiracies are thwarted. For example, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib. Sheikh Hasina has his blood in her veins. Whenever there is a disaster, whenever there is darkness covered with black clouds, Sheikh Hasina has come forward as a beacon. Dealt with the crisis alone. Maybe this is her strategy. She saw 1975, 2001 and 21 August of 2004. Saw one-eleven. May be this is why she wants to take the risk alone. The word "faith" disappeared from her mind. She alone wants to win Bangladesh and its people. Messi couldn't do it alone, can Sheikh Hasina do it? 


Editor's Mind

The country of omniscient

Publish: 10:00 AM, 12 Nov, 2022


Famous Iranian mathematician Al Beruni came to India in the late 10th century. He stayed in this area for many years. Al Beruni wrote an excellent book on this, called 'Tareekh-e-Hind'. In this book he wrote that 'Indian mathematics is very good, But the intellectuals of this country are gifted in another respect, that is, the ability to pretend to be an omniscient about something one knows nothing about. The extraordinary truth that Al Beruni spoke about the people of this subcontinent can be easily found just by looking around Bangladesh. Recently a research of an agricultural scientist was discussed on a television channel in the country. In this discussion, one presenter and two discussants literally insulted the scientist. But none of them have read the research paper properly. By asking strange, silly and irrefutable questions, three of them again proved Al Beruni’s statement. Watching this talk show, I found a strange similarity with the current reality of Bangladesh. This talk show is like a piece of Bangladesh. Just like some people in this country are talking whatever their heart desires without having the minimum knowledge on what they are talking about. Politicians, civil society and some media are now verbally attacking the government like that talk show. That agricultural scientist is like the government of Bangladesh. Like three people on a talk show, the main goal of the three parties is to screw up the government.


From a lawyer to an environmentalist. From an environmentalist to a human rights expert. Lately I noticed that person has also become an economist and continuously talking about the economic crisis in Bangladesh. Just like a discussant was saying 'He (the researcher) has committed a criminal offence', without even reading the research paper on eggplant. That lawyer aka environmentalist aka human rights activist aka economist sees it as a serious crime to ask for a loan from the IMF. He was casually saying, 'The economy is ruined. The economy is in the life support and the government is trying to survive artificially by borrowing from the IMF.' Is that so? Last Wednesday (November 9) through a press release, the IMF officially announced the loan assistance to Bangladesh. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said, "The IMF has reached an agreement with the Government of Bangladesh to provide loan assistance to Bangladesh." According to the press release, "$3.2 billion will be provided under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) and Extended Fund Facility (EFF) and $1.3 billion under the Resilience and Sustainability Facility (RSF). This loan will be given for a period of 42 months." The IMF press release said, "This new loan has been agreed upon to restore the country's macroeconomic stability and prevent various disruptive factors." According to the notification, "Bangladesh was moving forward with economic recovery after overcoming the epidemic, but due to the Russia-Ukraine war, the economic recovery of Bangladesh was interrupted." What was being said by the Bangladesh government as the main cause of the current economic crisis, matched with IMF. Bangladesh not bankrupt. Not even in a miserable situation. There are some problems but that because of the current global situation. The whole world is in crisis now. This crisis in Bangladesh has been inflated by three categories of groups to such a point that almost everyone in the country is now an economist. But their mourning started even earlier. Since the economic crisis in Sri Lanka. At that time a respectable civil economist urgently began reading economic storm bulletins to the media. From his words and body language, it seems that Bangladesh becoming Sri Lanka is just a matter of time now. But more than 6 months have passed since the crisis in Sri Lanka, the crisis in Bangladesh is not even close to that of Sri Lanka. According to the IMF, the situation of Bangladesh is much better than that of Sri Lanka or Pakistan. When the global fuel oil market became volatile, load shedding started in Bangladesh. The government started taking various austerity measures. Not all of these initiatives were correct. But the government tried. Meanwhile, some people in the country became fuel experts. Lawyers, economists, human rights experts everybody started giving lecture on fuel crisis. The common people are tired of listening to their complaints about what is wrong in the power sector. There is no reason to deny that there are several international quality experts in the energy sector in Bangladesh. As they rationally criticized some of the decisions of the government regarding power and energy, they also said what the government should do. But soon the real fuel experts went into hiding and the omniscient became energy experts. They began to speak strange and unrealistic things. I saw a civil servant saying 'Actually there has been no improvement in the power sector in the country in the last 13/14 years. We have gone backwards in the power and fuel sector.' After hearing this, many people like me panicked. What was the country's electricity production in 2008? How many people had electricity in their homes? He said these things without having this minimum information, and the reputed media of the country also propagated it. Now that load shedding has come down, they have turned their attention to IMF loan. Now the IMF has agreed to give the loan. Very soon the familiar intellectuals will surely start talking fluently about this new topic.


Will the politicians just sit idly when the civil people of the country are arguing that loudly? Our politicians are like second panelists of that eggplant talk show. Among them, I like a BNP leader who has been voluntarily office imprisoned for a long time. In a speech, he said that the government looted the reserve money and smuggled it abroad. The state treasury has been depleted. Before making such allegations, he must have minimum knowledge about the state, government, state treasury, foreign exchange reserves etc. Reserve money cannot be looted. It is also not possible to smuggle this money. The reserve money was once stolen through hacking in Bangladesh. There was a stir in the whole country. The then Governor of Bangladesh Bank resigned. Therefore, without knowing anything about the state's reserves, is it a good thing for a tested, self-absorbed politician to give such an open speech? A greater leader has said more terrible words. A few days ago, an active leader of BNP said, "The government is looting and now talking about famine in the country." Before this government spoke about famine, the United Nations and the World Bank gave early warnings of famine. The United Nations has officially declared 2023 as the Year of Crisis. The World Bank said, "In the wake of the Russia-Ukraine war, next year (2023) there will be a severe food crisis worldwide." Signs of this warnings have already begun in Europe, the United States. There is a severe food crisis in the UK. People are not able to buy the necessary foods. Crisis across the Europe. A dire situation is predicted in Europe this winter. Mid-term elections were held in the United States last Tuesday. Joe-Biden went on the back foot in this election due to issues like economic recession and inflation. Famine is already knocking doors in Africa. In the context of this uncertainty around the world, the Prime Minister has announced an advance warning. She never said that there will be famine in Bangladesh. She said 'we have to be alert as famine is emerging all over the world.' Due to political wisdom, prudence and foresight, the Prime Minister issued 5 point directives to deal with the impending crisis. These are, 1. Food production must increase. So that we can meet our needs by ourselves. 2. Not even an inch of land should remain uncultivated. 3. Reducing unnecessary costs and taking austerity measures. 4. Stop corruption. 5. Responsible behavior by all. The government's strategy is very clear. Ensuring food security. Prime Minister should be thanked for taking such steps in advance. But the way the poor agricultural scientist was humiliated in the eggplant talk show by asking brainless questions like why he did this research? Why published this research? Why researched eggplant, not shrimp? Just like that, why is the Prime Minister repeatedly talking about famine? What did the government do? BNP is now trying to humiliate the government on this issue. No problem with that either. I often imagine and get surprised thinking about what Al Beruni would have written if he saw the way the opposition leaders are talking about the crisis without knowing the minimum data.


When the civil society and politicians are talking without knowing the real knowledge, without investigating the real issues, some of the influential media of the country are encouraging those words. It seems that some media have taken the great responsibility of showing the country's crisis at any cost. The host of that talk show herself was biased. She was behaving like If she could, she would have slapped the agricultural scientist. Now the media is busy worrying the public with dire headlines like 'Crisis deepening and protracting', 'Production down, sales down'. If the people are not concerned than that is not journalism. But if someone analyzes the news of these media well, then it will be seen that there is a terrible manipulation of information. A media reported, “Bangladesh ranks third leaving behind Indonesia in rice production.” As a counter to this, the influential media propagated that there is shortage of rice. Again, the news that Bangladesh has been able to bring wheat from Ukraine to meet the wheat crisis has been suppressed or reluctantly printed by some media. This is how the crisis has deepened in the hands of ignorant omniscient. People's anxiety is increasing.

Of course, these three classes are not the only omniscient. Bureaucrats of Bangladesh are omniscient since time immemorial. Bureaucrats passed from Islamic History gives promotion to the doctors. Teaches medicine to cancer specialists. Takes care of the fish and animal resources, after graduating in political science. Agrarian bureaucrats became the gods of education. Since the time of Corona in 2020, the 'Omniscient' bureaucrats have become 'pundits' in everything. If Al Beruni had lived, he would have seen that speaking confidently without actually having any knowledge has been institutionalized in Bangladesh, through bureaucracy. These bureaucrats have become the god of fate of the nation in all fields including economy, global crisis, health, education, agriculture. Their range of their knowledge is now so vast that they have no time for leisure. A few days ago a very important bureaucrat retired. The day before his retirement he became a member of the Public Service Commission. Even before our bureaucrats retire, the important responsibilities of various constitutional and state institutions are handed over to them. The entire banking sector is now controlled by bureaucrats. Remember the promotion of a bureaucrat involved in Shahed scandal? He became senior secretary from secretary. Now he is the chairman of a state-owned insurance company. Wonderful, right? It is through the bureaucrats that Bangladesh has now become a country omniscient.


Seeing the growth of bureaucrats, it is ok for the ministers to be a little jealous. That is why lately the ministers have also become desperate to be an omniscient. The country is unstable due to dollar crisis. Banks cannot open emergency LCs. Bangladesh Bank has revised the amount of reserves in accordance with IMF's latest foreign exchange reserve calculations. Bangladesh's foreign exchange reserves stands at 26 billion according to the latest calculations. In the face of the dollar crisis, the finance department has announced a ban on all foreign travel in government money through a notification on Wednesday. In the meantime, a minister known as an omniscient said, "There is no shortage of dollars in the country. There are enough dollars in reserve than before." Another heavyweight minister of Awami League shouted 'Game is on', 'Game is on' and became a 'Game over' himself. Every day he talks about something casually. The omniscient disease has now become an epidemic in Bangladesh. However, it was only when al-Biruni arrived in the region in the tenth century that he identified the symptoms of the disease. We have also seen the delirium of 'omniscient' sufferers at various times. A few days ago during the corona, an omniscient was saying that there will be dead bodies on the streets during the corona epidemic. Another omniscient said, unemployment will increase and take a dire form. The economy will be destroyed. We know about Bachal's prediction about the Padma Bridge. But now it seems to have permeated in civil, oppositional politics, media, bureaucracy and government. Like Corona, the epidemic of being ignorant is spreading fast.

Bangladesh is under economic pressure. There is uncertainty ahead. Export earnings are falling. There is also growing concern about expatriate income. That's really it. But in all crises, the people of this country have shown an inexhaustible vitality. The people of this country have done everything to overcome the crisis. Even in Corona, our farmers have protected us by growing crops. In the last 14 years, Bangladesh has manifested its strength. People have learned to explore their potential. The scope of dreams has increased manifold. The people of this country will overcome the upcoming crisis with their own individuality. But who will cure the disease that is spreading in the society? These omniscient are increasingly becoming dangerous for the country and the people. They are creating confusion among people by creating noise. Their noise pollution must stop. 


Editor's Mind

Awami League in search of an ‘Extraordinary’ general secretary

Publish: 10:00 AM, 05 Nov, 2022


Awami League has fixed the date of the next council session. On December 24 the council of this country's oldest and largest political party will be held. This year's Council of Awami League is important for many reasons. The president of the party said some important things in the meeting of the executive committee. She said, this year's council will be very simple. Of one day. The council of the political party that has been in power for almost 14 years should have been a big deal. Should have been in a festive atmosphere. But why not do such a limited arrangement? This is because of the global context. Because of the intensifying economic crisis in Bangladesh. The World Bank, the United Nations have announced early warnings about the coming year. It is said that 2023 will be the year of famine. Since 2020, the world has been troubled by various crises. Corona has put the whole world in a deep uncertainty. Before the world could overcome from the crisis hit by the corona the Russia-Ukraine war started. This war has been going on for almost nine months. The war war brought Europe to the brink. The war is also affecting Bangladesh. The strength and capacity of our economy is getting gradually weaker. No good news in expat income either. Foreign exchange reserves continue to decline. Power crisis, gas crisis has taken the industrial production into a deep uncertainty. There is no good news anywhere except agriculture. Thousands of crores of money have been smuggled abroad. There is no visible progress in bringing back laundered money. Identified money launderers, looters are proudly roaming around. There is no one to take action against them. Despite this crisis, corruption has not decreased at all. Bureaucratic excesses have gone to an unbearable level. Only Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is talking about the crisis. Talking about famine. On Wednesday, the prime minister advised the junior government officials to be vigilant in dealing with famine. Requested, to practice austerity. Urged that not even an inch of land should remain uncultivated. She emphasized on increasing food production. While the Prime Minister talks about austerity and saving, immoral and ugly plans to build luxury houses for two bureaucrats are being implemented. The palace will also have a swimming pool! When the country is in the heat of crisis, how can the bureaucrats not have a little swimming fun. While the bureaucrats who have become bosses are enjoying the benefits, the ruling Awami League as a political party continues playing that old record of criticizing BNP. The statements of some ministers and leaders have now become a cause of public unrest. Despite being in power for 14 consecutive years, many known and unknown diseases have taken root in Awami League. Some of them are becoming chronic. Infiltrating, opportunistic hybrids seem to be devouring the Awami League now. Some members of the ruling party are like aliens from another planet. Their cheeks melt like butter in the sun. On the other hand, most of the tested and sacrificed of the grassroots are cornered. A look of worry on their faces. There is no chain of command in the team. Conflicts everywhere. Posts are being sold for money. Post trade, committee trade has become epidemic in Awami League. In all elections from Union Parishad to Zilla Parishad, Awami League is the opponent of Awami League. Half of the MPs have no connection with their constituencies. They are all busy. Almost half of the parliament members of Awami League are busy with job trade, relief looting, commission trade. They seem to think, this is the last chance. We’ll have to do everything now. Many leaders of Awami League said that it is time to change nominations in almost half of the seats in the upcoming elections. Some of the leaders of the party have chosen to make catchy statements against BNP to avoid their incompetence and responsibility. Their words have caused the dying BNP to wake up. While the prime minister is talking about the crisis openly, some ministers are playing hide and seek on this issue. All in all, neither the party nor the government is good. In 2009, Awami League came to power for the second time after 75. This time Sheikh Hasina has taken Bangladesh to a unique height. But today that development is questioned. There is not much time left until the next parliamentary elections. But the Awami League is chaos by various discomforts and criticisms. In such reality, Awami League has decided to hold its National Council session, which is very correct and important decision in such situation.


Sheikh Hasina was elected as the President of Awami League for the first time on February 15, 1981. Awami League Council was held from 13 to 15 February 1981 at Hotel Eden premises. In that council there was no option to elect Sheikh Hasina as the leader to protect the party. Since then, Sheikh Hasina has been serving as the president of Awami League for 41 years. Even at this moment there is no alternative of Sheikh Hasina. Sheikh Hasina is the sole leader of the party. Without Sheikh Hasina, this party is in ruins. The Awami League president recently said in a press conference, "I will not be the president of the Awami League, if even one councilor does not want to." Which is far from happening. Not even a single worker even dreams of an alternative to Sheikh Hasina. So, it goes without saying that there will be no discussion on the post of party chief in the upcoming council. The post of General Secretary of Awami League is very important. Awami League's passion and love is associated with this post. Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was the general secretary of Awami League for a long time. He built the organization while being the general secretary and spread it to the grassroots. General Secretary Sheikh Mujbur Rahman turned Awami League into a people's organization.


The 'East Pakistan Awami Muslim League' was formed on 23 and 24 June 1949 at the Rose Garden Democratic Workers Conference. Maulana Abdul Hamid Khan Bhashani became the first president of Awami Muslim League. Shamsul Haque of Tangail became the first general secretary. Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was elected joint general secretary of the newly formed party. The first general secretary of Awami League, however, could not do much for the party. In February 1952, Shamsul Haque was arrested for taking part in the national language movement. He was released from prison in 1953 in a very ill condition. Shamsul Haque lost his mental balance after his release from prison. The party's first general secretary was expelled from the Awami League in 1953. On November 14, 1953, the first council of Awami League was held at the Mukul cinema hall in Dhaka. Sheikh Mujibur Rahman became the general secretary of Awami League in this council. And from that point beagn the awakening chapter of Awami League. Common people were angry against the misrule of Muslim League. Bengalis had support and sympathy for Awami League since the beginning. But Bangabandhu started the work of strengthening the organization by involving the people with the organization. Whenever General Secretary Sheikh Mujib was out of jail, he traveled all over the country and developed the organization. On September 21, 1955, the Council of Awami League was held at Rupmahal Cinema Hall in Dhaka. Sheikh Mujib became the general secretary of this council for the second time. Meanwhile, Sheikh Mujib became the lifeblood of Awami League. Awami League turned into a vibrant organization under the leadership of the young and courageous. Awami League became the symbol of hope and aspirations of Bengalis. On February 7-8, 1957, a special council of Awami League was held at Kagmari, Tangail. The conflict of Awami League was revealed in this conference. Maulana Bhashani resigned as party president in March after the Kagmari conference. Awami League Council was held on 13 and 14 June 1957 at Shabisthan Cinema Hall in Dhaka. Bhashani's resignation letter was not accepted in this council. Bhashani was retained as the president of Awami League despite his resignation. But a few days later, on 25-26 July 1957, a democratic conference was held in Dhaka on Bhashani's initiative. Awami League officially broke through this conference. A party named National Awami Party (NAAP) emerged. At that time, Maulana Abdur Rashid Tarkbagish was made acting president. Meanwhile, Awami League became Mujib's organization. On October 7, 1958, military rule was imposed in Pakistan. All political activities stopped. On January 25 and 26, 1964, a meeting of the walking committee of the Awami League was held at the residence of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the general secretary of the party. In this meeting it was decided to revive the party. Tarkabagish became the president and Sheikh Mujib became the general secretary. In this continuation, Awami League Council was held in Dhaka's Eden premises on March 6 and 7. Tarbagish became the president of the council. Sheikh Mujibur Rahman became general of Awami League for the fourth time. General Secretary Sheikh Mujib became 'extraordinary' during this time. The main leader of Awami League. The history after that is the history of the Bengali liberation. Bangabandhu's 6 points, Agartala Conspiracy Case, Mass Uprising of 69. Election of 70. Sheikh Mujib became the guide of liberation of the Bengali nation. Another name of Bangladesh. On March 18, 1966, 6 points were approved in the council of Awami League. In that council, Sheikh Mujib, the most effective and extraordinary general secretary in the history of Awami League, was elected as the president of the party. After Bangabandhu, another short-lived politician Tajuddin Ahmed became the general secretary of Awami League. On March 18, 1966, he became the general secretary of Awami League. As Bangabandhu was the leader of the people, the poetry of public awakening; Tajuddin was a secret organizer. An organized leader and a wise politician. His adoration was to fulfill Bangabandhu. On August 27, 1967, the Council of Nikhil Pakistan Awami League was held. This time AHM Kamruzzaman became the general secretary of Awami League. The last council of Awami League before independence was held on June 4, 1970. Tajuddin Ahmed became general secretary for the second time in this council. This council was very important for Awami League. It was the leadership elected in this council that brought Awami League's historic victory in the 1970 elections. Brought the development mandate of Bangladesh. In March of 1971, Bangabandhu's plan for independence was perfectly implemented by the 'extraordinary' general secretary Tajuddin Ahmed.


As the Council of June 4, 1970 was very important for the Awami League, this year's Council has also put the Awami League in a tough situation. Awami League made a historically correct decision by electing Tajuddin Ahmed as General Secretary in the 70's council. The reason why Bangabandhu chose Tajuddin as general secretary can be understood in the liberation war of 71. Another evidence of Bangabandhu's organizational thinking and political foresight is found in making Tajuddin the general secretary. In my opinion, it would have been very difficult to form a government in exile and organize the liberation war, if the general secretary of Awami League had been someone else at that time. After 75, those who became General Secretary of Bangladesh Awami League are all good leaders. Late Begum Sajeda Chowdhury, Abdur Razzak, Zillur Rahman, Abdul Jalil, Syed Ashraful Islam, Obaidul Quader are all national leaders. All of them are selfless and self-sacrificing leaders of Awami League. But none of them, except two, became 'extraordinary' general secretaries. Some of them became confused at the time of crisis. Couldn't make the right decision. After the tragedy of 1975, Syeda Zohra Tajuddin took the initiative to reorganize the Awami League. On April 3 and 4, 1977, Awami League Council was held on a small scale at Hotel Eden. But before the start of the council, Awami League's conflict became public. Zohra Tajuddin was declared the convener in the face of intense controversy. She was given the responsibility to form the convening committee within 10 days. From 3 to 5 April 1978, Awami League was held. Abdul Malek Ukil became the president in this council. Abdur Razzak, beloved of Bangabandhu, a skillful organizer, was elected general secretary. At that time Abdur Razzak had an opportunity to become the 'extraordinary' general secretary. But Abdur Razzak got stuck in the narrow alley of group interest and confusion. Awami League without Bangabandhu became a wayward, confused and divided political organization. Voices from the grassroots raised, Sheikh Hasina is needed. There was no other option to save Awami League. Awami League was reborn in the Council of 81. As Sheikh Hasina became the president, there was an awakening in the grassroots of Awami League. The supporters of Bangabandhu's organization are hopeful. A unique opportunity to become immortal in history came before the skillful organizer Abdur Razzak. This leader had a unique opportunity to be a symbol of loyalty alongside Bangabandhu's legacy. But Abdur Razzak could not become the 'extraordinary' general secretary on the basis of group interest, my man policy. To make Sheikh Hasina's path difficult, Abdur Razzak stepped into the path of factional conflict. Chhatra League was disbanded on May 1, 1982 under his initiative. Awami League was also collapsing in that trend. Bakshal was formed on October 22, 1983 with Mohiuddin Ahmed as president and Abdur Razzak as general secretary. Awami League was in crisis again. Awami League President Sheikh Hasina assigned Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury as general secretary in this difficult situation. As Acting General Secretary, she gradually became 'extraordinary'. Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury proved that an organization can be built if it is loyal to the leader and loyal to the ideals. Sajeda Chowdhury became the Kandari of difficult times by obeying the leader's orders to the letter. When she became the full general secretary in the council of 87, the Awami League turned around under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina. After Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury, Zillur Rahman became the general secretary of Awami League in the council from 19 to 21 September 1992. He was also a symbol of faithfulness. Zillur Rahman was not a charismatic leader. But in terms of loyalty and faithfulness to the leader, he will remain an exemplary leader forever. Abdul Jalil was also faithful. He was a confidant of the party president. He inquired about the workers. Worked day and night for the organization. But he could not show the strength in difficult times. Shocked by the shock of One Eleven, Jalil raised many questions in politics. This burnt-out leader in Awami League could not use the opportunity to become an 'extraordinary' general secretary. Late Syed Ashraful Islam became the 'extraordinary' general secretary despite not being in close contact with the workers. The 'minus formula' was invented to implement the depoliticization process in One-Eleven. The Awami League president was arrested for implementing the 'minus formula'. In the 70s, Bangabandhu showed political wisdom by making Tajuddin Ahmed the general secretary. Sheikh Hasina also showed political prudence by making Syed Ashraful Islam Acting General Secretary before her arrest. Averse to publicity, sequestered from activists, Syed Ashraf became 'extraordinary' in the crisis. He played an important role in keeping the Awami League united.


Syed Ashraf liked to stay out of publicity. He did not speak much. But when he spoke, he spoke precious words. The people of the country believed and liked his words. I can still remember his words, during the rampage of Hefazat-e-Islam in May 2013. What a strong, powerful statement. The whole country people were assured by those words. Syeda Ashraf proved that the general secretary's job is not to look at the paper every day and say the same thing over and over again. The general secretary should be a symbol of trust. His message should be personable. This time, the grassroots workers of Awami League have only one demand in the council. An 'extraordinary' general secretary. Who will be loyal to the leader. Be steadfast in ideals. Who can take the right decision in times of crisis, care about the workers, will stand by the tested and the self-sacrificted. Will work day and night for the party. Awami League has leaders who have come from the grassroots. Times ahead are going to be more difficult. There is no alternative to electing such an 'extraordinary' General Secretary at this time.

Awami League   Council Session   General Secretary   Syed Borhan Kabir  


Editor's Mind

Now is the time

Publish: 10:00 AM, 29 Oct, 2022


Suddenly you may think, what time you are in right now? Did the time machine take you back to 2003? Or in 2005 or 2006. Unbridled load shedding, energy crisis, dollar crisis. Industrial factories are in turmoil due to fuel shortage. Syndicate in the commodity market. Rampage of corruption by a few individuals. People are disoriented by the increase in commodity prices. We have gone through a similar situation one and a half decade ago. Then there is a story of turning around of Bangladesh. Bangladesh has achieved the capacity of 100% electricity production. Bangladesh's progress from 2009 to 2021 has surprised the whole world. Bangladesh's development has also defied fairy tales. Development does not mean only bridges, culverts, roads and big buildings. Development of Bangladesh has been multi-dimensional. From village to city. The image of Bangladesh is changing everywhere. The image of Bangladesh is changing everywhere. There is a huge variation in development from one end of Bangladesh to the other. Ashrayan project, community clinics, agricultural revolution, awakening of Small Medium Industries, a trend of self-reliance of youth in villages, success stories of educated youths in farming, success of women awakening in employment, Padma Bridge, Metrorail, Karnaphuli Tunnel, Bangabandhu Satellite, the development of the past era is as diverse as the seven colors of the rainbow. In agriculture, industry, education, health, infrastructure, communication and information technology, such a balanced development has been achieved in very few countries in the world. Developments in Bangladesh are complementary and supportive of each other. Information Technology has empowered agriculture. Communication has boosted export trade. This is how every branch of development has evolved over the past decade. The destination of these developments is to make Bangladesh the 'Golden Bangla' of Bangabandhu's dream. Standing at the threshold of that dream journey, Bangladesh celebrated the birth centenary of the father of the nation and the golden jubilee of independence. Bangladesh is liberated from the chains of poverty. The has moved from the list of least developed countries to developing countries. 50 years later the basket case of 71 became the role model of success in the world. Till 2008, Bangladesh was a failed and pitiful country. But only in one era Bangladesh was recognized as the fastest growing country in the world. Above all, the people of this country learned to dream. Achieving the 'impossible'. And the shaper of this overwhelming progress is only one - Sheikh Hasina. This achievement was only possible for her thought, philosophy, integrity and prudence.


But the history of the Bengali nation is full of tragedy. Before enjoying the satisfaction of an achievement, the Bengali nation faced another tragedy. Whenever this nation is a little better, then the storm of destruction that destroys everything. Again that ominous cloud. The main reason for this is the global situation. Russia-Ukraine War. But besides this the failure of some younger rubbish is no less responsible. Being in power for a long time, opportunistic flatterers tend to crowd the center of power. Gradually incompetent, the younger became the masters of everything.  They did not join any movement in their life. There is no minimum contribution for the team. There is no sign of practice of Bangabandhu's ideal - some such persons have become ministers, advisers, MPs like getting the lamp of Aladdin's. They do not understand the meaning of these developments. They do not know the history of Awami League's sacrifice. They only care for their own interests. Because of them, all the achievements of thirteen years are now fading away. Their main activities are corruption, looting and extorting people. For example, one of the luckiest people in this country appeared in an event last Sunday (October 23). Tawfiq-e-Elahi, the energy adviser to the Prime Minister of Bangladesh. The aggrieved industrialists invited him as the chief guest at a discussion on 'Solution of Fuel Crisis in Industry' organized by Bangladesh Chamber of Industries (BCI), hoping to hear some words of hope. Hoping to hear that the government is on their side in this crisis. Where is the assurance, where is the promise to stand by? The advisor said, 'We have no other option but to be cost-effective in using electricity. If necessary, using electricity should be stopped during the day. Our reserves are very low. We don't have money. We cannot say what will happen in the future. At first I could not believe that the Prime Minister’s adviser could say such irresponsible words. Tawfiq-e-Elahi is a brave freedom fighter. I respect him for his contribution in the liberation war. But he is one of the people responsible for leading the power sector to the dire straits it is today.  I will not go into whether there is selfishness or lust in his every plan and thought. But as a citizen of Bangladesh, some basic questions are in my mind. Why people will pay about 90 thousand crore Taka for capacity charge or power plant rent. Again, many of these power plants do not even have production capacity. Why is there no large and permanent supply agreement to buy oil and gas from OPEC, OPEC plus countries? In whose interest is the commission-friendly decision to buy 50 percent of total imports from the spot market? Countries such as Qatar and Oman offered major gas supply contracts. But then the government did not accept it. But now they have applied through diplomatic channels to get gas from those two countries. But they have already started selling gas in Europe. Who is responsible for this?


However, the day after the speech of the energy adviser, Information and Broadcasting Minister Dr. Hasan Mahmud said, "The speech of the energy adviser is personal." The government has not taken any such decision. It was this adviser who said in June, "Load shedding should be done in future." On July 19, the government officially announced load shedding. However, load shedding started outside Dhaka a few days before this. The Minister of State for Energy said that load shedding will be done during the day.  Now there is five to six hours’ load shedding in Dhaka city itself. The Minister of State for Energy said that load shedding will be lessen by September. He said in October that there is no possibility of reducing the power crisis before winter. During the BNP-Jamaat coalition government, the child Naureen was shot and died in broad daylight in her father's arms. The Home Minister of that time had said at that time 'Allah's wealth has been taken by Allah'. Now our Minister of State for Energy has left the responsibility of solving the power crisis to nature.


The Energy and Power Adviser and the Information and Broadcasting Minister are both key figures in the government. When one refutes another's statement in this way, the instability and lack of coordination of the government is revealed. This is not the first such incident, for the past few days, the ministers' opposition statements have increased. Foreign Minister made a comment about India. In fact, two or three ministers countered. One minister even said that he is not a member of the Awami League. Even two heavyweight ministers made opposing statements about the number of people they brought to BNP's public meeting in Chittagong. Later one spat and spoke in the opposite tone. Ministers are more interested in other ministries than their own. For example, the Health Minister on Wednesday discovered a new theory about the increase in commodity prices. The government has not increased the prices of goods in the country's market. The price has increased by itself. What a strange explanation. Trees grow as you grow. As the flower grows from the bud, so does the fruit. Similarly, commodity price is a living being. The price of which increase automatically. Is market supervision the job of the Ministry of Health or not? This is how the cabinet works. The prime minister, who has been in power for three consecutive terms, took two exceptional initiatives. The first is the big surprise in the cabinet every term. The second is an attempt to separate the government and the party. It was a great opportunity for the newcomers of Awami League. In the first phase (2009-2013) Begum Matia Chowdhury, late Syed Ashraful Islam and Abul Mal Muhit later Obaidul Quader and Jahangir Kabir Nanak (Minister of State) did not get any heavyweight leader in the cabinet. Besides, Awami League had a lot of time at that time. People wanted to test the period of newcomers. In the political crisis in 2013, the Prime Minister called national leaders like Tofail Ahmed, Amir Hossain Amu, Rashed Khan Menon, Hasanul Haque Inu. At that time, no one joined the cabinet due to various reasons. But before the 2014 elections, Sheikh Hasina gave a political image to the cabinet. A wise cabinet helped Sheikh Hasina to some extent to get through the tumultuous election on January 5. Tofail Ahmed, Rashed Khan Menon joined the election ministerial meeting to break the shame, giving precedence to national interest over personal interest. After the 2014 elections, the Awami League president brought forward her 'A' team. It was one of the best Cabinets in my opinion politically wise. After the 2018 elections, many were shocked to see the shape of the current cabinet. A class of bureaucrats actually started a conspiracy to destroy the achievements of Awami League through that election. Among those who became ministers after 2018, except for one or two exceptions, all are dull. Inactive to deal with the crisis. Unwilling to take responsibility. I think the bureaucrats persuaded the Prime Minister to form such a cabinet to fully ax their authority. The Prime Minister conducted a political audit through this ministerial meeting. But most of them fail this test. As the Lands Minister has proved, a ministry can be made clean and corruption free with skills, competence and talent. The home minister was also praised for his modest, elegant choice of words. But their numbers are very few. A painful aspect of this cabinet is that most of the ministers have no roots in politics. The shrill voices of the sitting ministers gradually filled the ears. Former Jaksu VP of Jahangir Nagar University, former president of Chhatra League, Enamul Haque Shamim has been appointed as namely minister. In my opinion, the current cabinet is not even the 'C' team of Awami League. Almost half of them were not even leaders of Awami League. Some businessmen who are not in touch with the workers and childish fools have turned the ministry into a farce. The Prime Minister undertook this risky audit from a noble and far-reaching perspective. But ministership is not a job. It's not even a lottery ticket. Ministry is a responsibility. One of the toughest tests of national service. In an interview, Mrs. Indira Gandhi said 'Ministership is not a matter of celebration. To put himself to the test in front of the people at every moment.' This is an extreme reality in a democratic system. A minister has to be constantly tested by the people, the Parliament and the Prime Minister. And if he fails this test, he has to leave or removed. But after the heinous killings of 1975, ministership became a chance to join the millionaires' club. Money making machine. Ministers themselves do not resign themselves to failure due to lack of accountability. And the instances of removing them too are becoming rare. People are reassured when the failed ones are removed and qualified ones are brought forward. Government employees get speed up. This is the reality. In India, Narendra Modi has made major changes in the cabinet to overcome the Covid crisis. He has restored the confidence of the common people. Three Prime Ministers were elected in two months in Britain. But there is a common perception in Bangladesh that admitting the failure of a minister means proving that the government has failed. Handing over arms to opposition parties. But the prime minister has dismissed numerous such false theories in Bangladesh politics. In Awami League, there are 100 such dedicated people including old, mature and young, who can stop this activity of 'destroying achievements' if they become ministers. Their job is only one, to exactly follow Sheikh Hasina's instructions. Will complete the responsibility given by Sheikh Hasina at any cost. There is no lack of such leaders. In Awami League, there are many leaders who will be applauded and cheered by the people if they become ministers. People will be hopeful. Now is a time of crisis. In this crisis, the government should be freed from the garbage and save the country. All those incompetents who talk about Bangabandhu and Sheikh Hasina all the day but the opposite should be identified and removed. Now is the time to resist those who have turned the Ministry into a business center. The number of wicked, miscreants, flatterers is less. But they are organized under the shadow of the administration. They are the ones who roam around the head of government. They will run away in the time of crisis. The families who lost everything in 75, the young teenagers who dedicated their youth to Bangabandhu's ideology, who fought in the streets against the dictatorship from 82 to 90, those who have practiced meritocracy, those who have fought with their lives to establish the right to vote for the restoration of democracy since 1991, those who have resisted the BNP-Jamaat demonic attack in 2001, those who are against the conspiracy of one-eleven, who were adamant about the ideals of the party and the leader, who love the people, and dedicated to the welfare of people, number of self-sacrificing, idealistic leaders in Awami League are many. They weep quietly. Pain bursts in their heart. They are waiting. Still these devoted and experienced workers hope that Sheikh Hasina will remove all these garbage. Now is the time to bring forward the worthy. For the real game. The 'A' team must come down on the field.

Syed Borhan Kabir   Bangladesh   Politics  


Editor's Mind

The calamitous surprise for Awami League

Publish: 10:00 AM, 15 Oct, 2022


The Gaibandha-5 election was ordinary. Heatless. The seat became vacant due to the death of former Deputy Speaker Advocate Fazle Rabbi Mia. As usual BNP did not participate in this election. Awami League's main opponent in this election was the National Party. On the polling day, the atmosphere in the constituency was quite peaceful. No disturbance was reported anywhere. In this October 12 by-election, CCTVs were installed inside the polling stations. The Chief Election Commissioner and other commissioners were sitting in the Election Commission watching the polling situation on CCTV camera. It was as if CEC was catching a 'thief'. The Election Commission stopped taking votes in 50 centers by 11:30 am. With this decision of the commission, the rest of the candidates except the Awami League candidate announced boycotting the election. Like a planned script. The Chief Election Commissioner was eagerly waiting for such an 'auspicious moment'. Kazi Habibul Awal suspended the election with a formal notice. "The situation has gone out of control," he told media. The post of Chief Election Commissioner is constitutional. It is his constitutional duty to protect the voting rights of the people. Therefore, he can suspend the election. But there must be a factual and realistic reason for that. Was the situation really that bad in the Gaibandha-5 by-election? It is the responsibility of the returning officer to conduct an election. Did the Returning Officer request the Election Commission to suspend the polls? Presiding Officers perform duties at various polling stations. Did they say in writing or verbally that they do not have control over the polling station? Was there any election-related violence in Gaibandha? Was anyone injured or killed? No, the Returning Officer did not get any complaint related to the election. None of the presiding officers said the situation was out of control. So why and on what basis CEC suspended the Gaibandha-5 by-polls? Was there any other purpose behind it? The number of polling stations in Gaibandha is 145. For the sake of argument, let’s assume that there have been irregularities in 50 centers. So why the polling in the remaining 95 centers closed?


As a result, an almost insignificant by-election in Gaibandha became a national and international issue. The Election Commission has given a clear message to the country and abroad by suspending the polls. Awami League wants to win the polls by any means. Awami League rigged to win the election in such a way that the Election Commission was forced to stop the polls. For some time, BNP, civil society and some western countries including the United States have been talking in almost the same tone about the next parliamentary elections. BNP says that free, fair and impartial elections are not possible under this government. They are trying to create a movement on this claim. Civils say that elections should be fair and participatory. Which means, BNP must be brought to the election. And it seems like the election in Bangladesh is the biggest headache for the United States. The US Ambassador to Bangladesh came to the Election Commission several times. Sometimes alone sometimes with diplomats from allied countries. CEC has assured them. After these meetings, the new Election Commission changed its objectives. Not a free, fair and impartial election but the Election Commission wants to show that they do not care about anyone. They became desperate to prove that the Election Commission is impartial. A year and a half before the election, the Election Commission held a meeting with the DC-SPs on October 8. Why is there a meeting with DC SPs at this time? A DC or SP stays in a district for 2/3 years. Most of those who are holding these positions in different districts will be transferred before the next elections. Such meetings are usually held at the time of announcement of election schedule. Why did the Election Commission sing the winter songs in the monsoon? In this meeting, the Deputy Commissioner and the Superintendent of Police made quite a bit noise. They protested when an election commissioner accused them of being bias. How does a person in constitutional office make accusations of bias against republican servants? To get applause? Or to please someone? During the election period (whatever the election may be) those who perform the duties are under the Election Commission. If someone actually behaves in a biased manner, then that’s a violation of discipline. It is the responsibility of the Election Commission to take action against those who have committed such acts. But instead of doing so, there is another motive behind such accusations.


Before the heat of that event could calm, the election commission showed this bravery in the Gaibandha-5 by-election. Tried to prove that it has a backbone. In order to prove its backbone, the Election Commission actually made Awami League a 'vote thief'. The purpose of this needs a clarification. This can be explained in many ways. Some pro-BNP intellectuals are calling it a staged drama. According to them, the election commission actually set a trap by stopping the polls in this unimportant election. The Election Commission has shown how powerful they are nationally and internationally. Don't care about the government. They can suspend an election with one declaration. This is not Rakib or Huda Commission. As a result, the United States, the European Union will say, wow! Amazing. What a powerful election commission. It will convince the opposition that there is no need for a caretaker government. You can go for election under this commission. We are here also. Gaibandha election actually became a trap to bring BNP and other untrusted parties to the election. However, this statement of the clever intellectuals of BNP is not acceptable. By the speech of some Awami League leaders after the election, it seemed that Awami League was shocked, surprised and stunned. It’s like the election commission slapped the Awami League on the face for no reason. In 1991, Magura, Mirpur constituencies were elected under BNP. Incidents like encroachment of polling stations, looting of ballot boxes, changing of votes have taken place that time. But the then Chief Election Commissioner fled from Magura in a helicopter and said 'I am helpless.' That one word of Justice Rauf caused damage to BNP, but now in 2022 the damage done to Awami League due to the suspension of polls in Gaibandha is much greater than that. Does anyone knowingly harm themselves?


After this incident, BNP will get chance to speak a lot on their behalf. Which the BNP leaders have already started. After the Election Commission's action in Gaibandha, a major evidentiary argument for the caretaker government emerged for the BNP. Awami League is in possession of almost the entire parliament. Where they don’t want to lose in a single election. Wants to win by rigging. If Awami League is so desperate and careless for one seat, then how is an impartial election of 300 seats possible under this government? BNP says, look, even the Election Commission who is loyal to Awami League, could not tolerate the excesses of their vote rigging and was forced to call off the elections. If this is the situation now, what will happen in the 300-seat election? That is why a caretaker government is a must need. BNP is also saying that Awami League wants to win the election by force, which was proved in Gaibandha. After 2018, all the allegations that were made against the Awami League of taking away the voting rights, it's like the election commission announced its verdict on that by suspending the polls in Gaibandha. Told all the truth. Awami League is rogue in the voting field.


But the calculation of politics is not that simple. The complex calculations of politics are often incomprehensible. After 1975, the Awami League was deceived into trusting various 'neutral' so-called clean people. Awami League came to power in 1996 under the leadership of Sheikh Hasina after 21 years. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina wanted to keep the post of President neutral, to develop it as an institution. That is why she ran to former Chief Justice Sahabuddin Ahmed. He was made the president. But how the late Justice Sahabuddin has embarrassed and disgraced the Awami League, history will bear its witness. Awami League made former bureaucrat MA Saeed the Chief Election Commissioner as he was considered to be efficient and competent. But the way he used all power against the Awami League candidates in the October 2001 elections was unfair and unprecedented. It is as if disciplining Awami League is the only criterion to prove neutrality. In 2001, another former Chief Justice Latifur Rahman was made the head of the non-partisan caretaker government. Awami League expected him to perform his duty in an honest and impartial manner. But before taking the oath, he consulted with the pro-BNP intellectuals. By transferring 13 secretaries within 13 minutes of assuming office, he proved that working against Awami League is neutrality. In 2007, it was the new businessmen who came to One Eleven and filed a false and dirty case against the Awami League president. Influential lawyers who have suddenly become Awami Leaguers have refused to fight the case on behalf of Sheikh Hasina. In 2009, Awami League had to face a surprise even after coming to power for the second time. The caretaker government led by Dr. Fakhruddin took the initiative to remove a judge due to corruption. At that time corrupt judges were invited for tea at Bangabhaban. There he would have been forced to resign, this procedure is unacceptable, unfair. But Justice Surendra Kumar Sinha was invited to one such tea. From there Justice Sinha was saved by the intervention of a powerful lawyer. The whole court knew that he was corrupt. But the Awami League government appointed him as the Chief Justice. Justice Sinha almost made a constitutional coup. A verdict declaring the current government illegal was also prepared and given to him. In the end, Awami League was saved from the Sinha conspiracy by a lot of struggle. Awami League was shocked by the behavior of Justice Shahabuddin. Latifur Rahman, MA Said surprised the Awami League. Justice Sinha stunned the Awami League. Such so-called "trustworthy" "principles" are secretly carrying knives for Awami League. Waiting for an opportunity to ambush. Did Awami League get a message like that in Gaibandha? Last Sunday Bangladesh daily editor Naem Nizam wrote a unique, extraordinary, valuable editorial entitled 'Can Awami League deal with rumors'. The beginning of the writing was like 'Have you ever thought how dangerous the person next to you is? ....The damage is done by our own people.' After the incident of Gaibandha, I re-read the article of friend Naem Nizam after seeing the dangerous surprise of Awami League leaders. A real example of his writing happened so quickly. Many will disagree with me. Many might ask, then did the Awami League wanted a loyal trusted one as the Chief Election Commissioner, who will work for Awami League? That is not the case at all. Awami League appointed Kazi Habibul Awal as Chief Election Commissioner out of the expectation of impartiality. He will not surrender to any pressure, temptation, fear, from that optimism. But the new commission is trying to prove itself strong by opposing Awami. What is to be seen now is that what surprise Election Commission brings in order to prove itself neutral and beloved of western countries, BNP and the civils. How much CEC goes over the Awami League to gain their trust. Gaibandha by-election is also a warning for Awami League. After the 2018 election, a bunch of garbage appeared in the Awami League. They started a terrible game of destroying the electoral system to win by any means. Some of the by-elections this time have been excellent. But many wanted to be elected unopposed after receiving the nomination. A veteran physician gets nominated. After receiving the nomination, he successfully implemented the plan to push away other candidates. The mentality of winning by force was also seen in some places. Getting nominated by Awami League is like winning the lottery. A disease of vying for nomination has infected the Awami League. They got the message in Gaibandha that it is important to move out from this. In order to win elections, you have to go to the people. There is no alternative to this. But some Awami League members forgot this. Gaibandha by-election is a warning message for Awami League. But no matter how careful Awami League is, no matter how interested it is in conducting fair elections, if the Election Commission wants to, it will make everything bogus. Gaibandha by-election is a small example of the fact that they can do it very easily. Who will do what if the commission does one after another incident like Gaibandha in the upcoming elections and by-elections? If the Election Commission says, this government does not want fair elections, then the civil society and the West will jump in. Many events will happen before the national elections and that hint was found in Gaibandha. Many more surprises are waiting for Awami League in the upcoming elections.


However, the Gaibandha by-election has opened the door to a significant idea. In the last thirteen years, various opportunists have taken a seat in the boat of Awami League. They have become bigger Awami Leaguers than Sheikh Hasina. Some of them have become the rulers of the government. Sometimes it seems that they are everything. Many bureaucrats now behave like Awami League leaders. Overzealous in the police unnecessarily incited the opposition. Many people are shocked to see the influence of people who have lost their security by electing against the Awami League and have now become the policy makers of the government. Their U-turn is only a matter of time. This message was received through the suspension of Gaibandha by polls. Crisis is increasing in the country. Load shedding is becoming alarming. Those who suddenly became influential are not taking responsibility. Bureaucrats have taken responsibility to deal with the economic crisis. Bureaucrats are going to the World Bank IMF meeting leaving the finance minister in the country. Those who suddenly become dear to the government are now dominating. Will they also take a U-turn ahead? The concern is getting bigger and bigger. One thing must be remembered, no one is 'my man' in difficult times except the beaten, jailed, oppressed idealistic grassroots workers. The guest of the well time disappears in bad times only with the spectacle of deception.