Column
Even today Pakistan has not been able to accept Bangladesh Liberation

13 Jan 2014

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Last year was a year when Bangladesh achieved two enormous gains. First gain was the pronouncement of verdict in respect of associates and collaborators of the killers and rapists of 1971 and even execution of one such verdict.

 Second gain was large scale manifestation of the liberation war spirit in the form of convergence of youths in thousands at Shahbag in Dhaka demanding capital punishment to the war criminals of 1971. People from all walks of life, imbued with liberation war spirit, gathered at Shahbag to express solidarity with the youths. Except for these two gains the last year had very little to offer as the country witnessed unfettered violence, vandalism, blood shed and killings.

 

Execution of Quader Molla, a close associate of the killers and rapists of 1971, has opened Pakistan’s ‘old wound’. Soon after Molla’s execution, Pakistan government expressed ‘deep concern’, saying Molla was a patriot, loyal to undivided Pakistan, and he was by no means a criminal. This realization dawned on Pakistan too late, after 42 years. Had the associates and collaborators of the killers and rapists of 1971 been patriot and loyal to undivided Pakistan, why were they not given shelter in Pakistan after the emergence of Bangladesh? Why were they sent back to Bangladesh after brutal killing of the Father of the Nation?  What was the inherent motive behind sending the Razakar guru and war crimes mastermind Ghulam Azam to Bangladesh? Genocide perpetrated in 1971 by the occupation forces of Pakistan and their local associates / collaborators has not yet faded from public memory.

 

Pakistan secured release of 195 Prisoners of War (POWs) by holding over four lakh Bangladeshis as hostage in West Pakistan. It also cited the ground that Bangladesh had no authority to hold trial of the Pakistani POWs. On March 24, 1974, Pakistan completed all formalities for repatriating the Bangladeshi families held hostage in that country. It also assured Bangladesh that it would hold trial of the 195 POWs on Pakistani soil. In return, Bangladesh handed over 195 POWs to Pakistan along with all necessary documents and evidence so that Pakistan government could try them. But after the POWs landed in Pakistan, they were given a warm reception by the Pakistani government, after which they were set free. Thus Pakistan government deviated from its commitments.

 

After the liberation, when the Bangladeshi war criminals went underground and were in disarray, a Bangladeshi Army Chief who was also a freedom fighter took the first step to establish and rehabilitate the Jamaat led by the 1971 war crimes mastermind Ghulam Azam. The Army Chief also altered the basic principles of Bangladesh’s Constitution to pave the way for emergence of Jamaat and its storm trooper student organization Shibir in the political, economic and social landscape of the country. Today Jamaat and Shibir are two big names enjoying tremendous political and economic clout in the country. A large section of people are supporting them either under the cover of ‘Bangladeshi nationalism’ or by indulging in India-baiting on various issues.

 

A major political party even desires to get Jamaat’s support as the Islamist outfit has developed a strong base in the country over a period of time. This party has failed to realize that Jamaat is basically a parasite that gradually kills its host and assumes the shape of the host over a period of time.

 

Pakistan and its local collaborators failed to halt onward march of Bangladesh even after killing the intellectuals in 1971.

 

Socio-economic conditions in Bangladesh now are much advanced than those in Pakistan. Bangladesh does not need support from America or India to defend its borders.

 

It has not been possible to hold trial of the Pakistani war criminals due to diplomatic reasons. But Bangladesh government’s decision to hold trial of the local collaborators of the Pakistani occupation forces was a wise and judicious step. Pakistan is unwilling to accept the reality even after 42 years. Far from apologizing for the genocide and rape perpetrated by its soldiers in 1971. Pakistan’s National Assembly has passed a resolution condemning Molla’s execution. Statements are emanating from Pakistan underscoring the necessity for carrying out attacks on Bangladesh. Criminal character of Pakistan has thus manifested on the political landscape from these developments. Bangladesh government’s reactions in this regard are legitimate and reasonable.

 

Emotional outburst of the country’s youths at Ganojagaran Mancha at Shahbag, Dhaka reminds the country men of their freedom fighter forefathers who had made supreme sacrifice to liberate the country from Pakistani clutches in 1971.

 

If the present government in Bangladesh gets dislodged for any reason, the state power will be grabbed by the forces that will leave no stone unturned to turn Bangladesh in to a Pakistani colony - a half-Taliban terrorist state. If that be so, what was the need for the freedom fighters to make such tremendous sacrifices in 1971? This has to be kept in mind that the ongoing war in Bangladesh is intended to preserve the gains of 1971. Pakistan’s dream has to be shattered at any cost.




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