Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Saturday, June 28, 2008
Monday, May 19, 2008
exploitation of workers
Grameen Phone, the milk-cow of Dr. Yunus, is in fact bilking it’s poor workers. The documentary, made by Danish journalist Tom Heinemann and to be aired on Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) Thursday evening, reveals shocking working conditions at the firms supplying Grameen Phone. Employees were shown working with hazardous chemicals and heavy metals virtually without any safety protection. This recent finding of labour scandal of Grameen Phone and Telenor consortium has cast a shadow on already controversial image of Dr Yunus.
Nobel Prize, particularly in peace has often been tainted with political intrigues which can be likened, in the context of Bangladesh, with the action plan of DUDAK. DUDAK is using it’s anti-graft campaign as a strategy to achieve it’s goal to decouple politics from public. Nobel Peace Prize, often seems to have a political agenda behind it’s peaceful façade. It gets mired in further controversies when an economist, instead of getting recognition for his giant contribution in economics, gets a peace prize.
Henry Kissinger has been indicted for war crime and bloody political conspiracies in Vietnam, Cyprus, Cambodia, Chile, East Pakistan and Bangladesh. He was the architect of ‘Operation Condor’ which unleashed killing, execution, disappearance and torture of hundreds of thousands of left political activists and intellectuals throughout Latin America in 70s. He received Nobel Peace Prize in 1973. Menachem Begin, in 1945 had dead or alive bounty of ₤10,000 on his head by British Imperial Administration in Palestine, won Nobel Peace Prize in 1978 with Anwar Sadat of Egypt for Camp David Peace treaty. The peace treaty has ever been collecting dust in the shelf of White House. Nobel Prize in Peace, literally, gave him the license of heinous crime to invade Lebanon and to slaughter hundreds of thousands of men, women and children in Sabra and Shatila refugee camps.
These are the few examples to expose the nobility and novelty of the Peace Prize. Dr. Yunus has joined the hall of fame of the global capitalist elites for turning poverty into a lucrative commodity for capital. To unmask his other face, take a snapshot of his recent choreography on our political stage when the curtain dropped to a mysterious end. But truly that is not the end. He is still lurking in the murky water of our post one-eleven politics. Remember, when DU campus exploded against present regime and then military sledge hammer came down ruthlessly on the teachers and students of DU, in frugally worded single sentence, our guardian angel expressed his reaction – ‘everything is going fine.’ During his recent visit to USA, Dr Yunus gave a keynote speech in front of the august audience of Commonwealth Club of California. Next day, he was speaking to a selected gathering of glamour-struck, myopic gold-fish Bangali community in USA. Please listen to these two speeches, if you can, which will help you diagnose the diabolic bipolarity of our Nobel Laureate Dr. Yunus.
Sunday, May 4, 2008
In fact in every critical juncture of our nation, his role has been largely obscured in mystery and often in conflict with his projected image. In 60s, as a rookie politician, he was parachuted into Awami League politics by an alliance of national and international interest groups to derail the forward march of Bangalee nationalism saturated with socialism and secularism. His role in 1971, 1975 and most recent pre and post one-eleven political contradictions bare his true political fangs. His latest joint venture political ploy, with prolific partners like Badruddoza, Sirajul Alam Khan, Ershad, Yunus and the civil-military bureaucracy, stokes public fear of lethal future of our democracy. He is the team lead to design and develop a greenhouse democracy which will be grown in the garrison and harvested by the army Generals. In this new role he had emerged as a ‘political cannibal’ by spearheading conspiracy of eliminating Awami League from political landscape of Bangladesh.
He is undoubtedly a much respected professional figure which gave him leverage to earn huge fortune. A list of his national and international corporate clientele would not only manifest his professional acumen, but also would help one map his political clout in international arena. Evading tax is corporate culture and Dr. Kamals are paid heftily to give this culture legitimacy. While he himself became a tax dodger, Badruddoza, his political partner, found no foul play in it. It is statistically true that Dr. Kamal is a merely a mole with respect to Giasuddins.
As opposed to his ever flourishing legal career, his political career in democracy has reached nadir. Geriatric reality, negligible public support and craving for throne; either one or all of these factors have persuaded him to ride on the Trojan horse to gallop to power.
Bangabandhu used to confide in Dr. Kamal. So did Bangabandhu in Mushtaque as well, while distancing himself from Tajuddin. Due to those political lapses of Bangabandhu, misfortune not only struck him and his family, it devoured the whole nation. The saddest reality is, the architects of our national calamities, like Dr Kamal, can be likened to mythical Chameleon, who can escape every national crisis unscathed and emerge from each crisis in new color and vigour.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
A nation, developed, developing or underdeveloped, can boast a few patriots of Motia’s calibre. For Bangladesh, it is only Motia, a loner and the brightest in her orbit which is unparallel. She is humble and serene like the nature of Bangladesh, yet so feisty like a monsoon river on the street of protests. When patriotism and honesty were traded for comfort and wealth by the once valiant heroes of our political past, they gradually lost their moral shelter and repugnantly transformed into a herd of rats, bats and mules. But to Motia, virtues and reasons are the irreversible concept of life. That concept lures her to the street, gives her strength to barricade the goliath of evils for the protection of her kinfolk. Every starved person of her country is her kin. Therefore when she stands in the line for rice and waits for hours oblivious of scorching sun and weariness of recent ailment, she reflects one of the millions, famished. Will the children fall asleep hungry tonight – that is her only agony now. She is Motia, the ‘Agni Kanya’ evolved through age and experience to become ‘Banga Kanya’, the daughter of Bangladesh.
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Lutfur Rahman Riton received Bangla Academy Award 2007 on juvenile literature. This award earned him kudos and criticism as well. The timing of give and take of this award churned a cloud of suspicion in many minds including mine, more apolitical less literary and a long time admirer of Riton. A recent poetry of Riton, a posthumous tribute to the greatest pen-warrior Wahidul Huq, helped me see Riton at a much higher ground, much beyond his limericks and spoofs. His sudden arrival in Canada couple of years ago, as a political exile, had created a huge inertia of excitement among his fans and local Bangalee literary hubs. That also has decimated in a relatively short time, and his initial presence at the centre of every arty and literary podium has now reduced to living room sizzling adda. His life in Ottawa gliding on odd jobs was not uncommon for a starter in Canada, but certainly a huge plunge from his immediate velvety past as a diplomat. His diplomatic assignment in Japan is found as critically inappropriate but hefty dividend of his earlier political investments, thanks to Awami League’s brief respite from street to the power.
However, the timing of Riton,s open letter to General Moeen U published on June 22, 2007 in ‘Weekly 2000’ with a shrill of appreciation for the General left many of his fans and comrades like me flabbergasted. Particularly, when the time, tune and the turf have been too hostile for an aficionado of democracy to waltz with the wolf. .In his open letter to the General, Riton articulated his total alliance, punctuated by a feeble request to stop liaisons with war criminals, with the mesmerising ambitions of the General on political reforms and corruption cleansing. Riton’s emotional aberration went further in cajoling the General to pay him eighty dollar that he spent on overseas calls for his abortive attempt to contact the General for a live chat and to whisper his love for his agendas. General did not falter to seize the opportunity and precisely after a month on July 22, 2007, in an interview, in a befitting response to his new found ‘beau politico’, he assured him bounty much more than mere eighty dollar.
Riton often used to complain about a bus ticket to Toronto that his pedestrian life in Ottawa could not afford him. Last month, all of a sudden, he found a magic carpet to fly him in luxury to Bangladesh. Public radar got the blips from Dhaka of a floral reception and goose step honour on red carpet and a ceremonial handover of a ‘lifetime ladder’. The first step of the telescopic ladder took him to the podium of Bangla Academy. A prestige envelope with a point One Million Taka cheque was the first consignment of humble payback from the General in response to a meagre demand of Dollar Eighty. And a certificate, which Riton undisputedly deserves but not from this Bangla Academy, was an untimely harvest of his life long cultivation.