Life, Work and Philosophy-Part 3 | Daily News
Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Birth Centenary:

Life, Work and Philosophy-Part 3

The City of Dhaka, Bangladesh
The City of Dhaka, Bangladesh

On June 19, 1968, they started judicial proceedings inside Dhaka Cantonment to kill him in legal procedures. During the prefatory investigation of this judgement, Bangabandhu gave a written speech in the court and there he defended himself asserting his part as an activist of Pakistan movement, and that he can't separate Pakistan. The job of separating Pakistan can only be done by those who are now in Pakistan’s government but not were the activists of Pakistan movement. This is known from the book of an arraigned of Agartala Conspiracy Case Commander Abdur Rauf that Bangabandhu took this stance for self-advocacy. Another arraigned of Agartala Conspiracy Case Commander Moazzem Hossain quoted, “We'll accept the execution confessing the truth that we attempted it to have us liberated as our Liberation Movement is accelerated.” There Bangabandhu’s logic was, “No, the more we'll negate their accusation, the more Pakistanis will insist upon the issue to sentence us to death. And the more people know this; the more will be their preparation for liberation. The aim is to prepare everyone for the Liberation Movement. We will not give them any chance to prove us dissident”,

Focusing on the Agartala Conspiracy Case on that day our country was ready for liberation and the student community formed the All-Party Student Action Committee bringing all the students of the country in a row. Along with the six-point programme, the community demanded an 11-point programme maintaining compatibility with the former. They formed movement all around the country based on six-point and eleven-point programmes. The ground was well organised, focusing on freeing Bangabandhu. Matiur, a student of Dhaka Naba Kumar Institute, was murdered on that very day. Later a slip was obtained from his pocket where it was written that “Mother, I'm heading to free Sheikh Mujib.” This emotion and sacrifice for Bangabandhu on February 22 forced the Pakistan government to withdraw the case and set Bangabandhu free.

Bangali and Bangla’s Friend Bangabandhu

In 1966, when the Ayubled government detained Bangabandhu, he was the popular leader of East Pakistan and President of Awami League. But after his release on February 22, 1969, he took the shape of Bangladesh. That’s why student-crowd was not willing to call their leader who took the shape of Bangladesh with just his parents’ given name.

On February 23, at the Racecourse Ground, in the presence of millions of students, he was awarded Bangabandhu (Bengal's Friend) by the Student Action Committee. People were so enthused about calling him in a name - it can be mentioned that the title given to Sheikh Mujibur Rahman spread out all around the country at lightning speed. For so many days, who used to call him Sheikh Saheb, Mujib Bhai or Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, started calling him ‘Bangabandhu’ with love and respect from that moment. Reasoning from this fact, Bangabandhu understood that he was very close to his goal. So, he took the plunge to be the leader of the country and people in a legitimate way through election, and he came out as a single leader. That’s why after his being free, he led the country’s politics towards an election without being confused and off track. The entire politics of the country was in his control during that time.

After such a victory, he joined the conference and discussed the basis of a six-point programme with Ayub Khan who plotted to kill him. He knew very well that this round table conference would end up in vain. But he didn’t step aside from regulatory politics despite being imparted that the assembly’s futility will pave the way to another military dictator. He knew it too that military rule won't sustain for the long-term. He had a total control upon his land. The futility of the round-table meeting reduced Ayub Khan to transfer power to Yahya Khan. Yahya Khan was forced to give the declaration of the 70's election. But those who had vested interests always tried to protect their part. Yahya arranged his election within the Legal Framework Order (LFO). Many groups, including Maulana Bhashani, boycotted the election. But Bangabandhu was well versed that whatever plotting was done, he would come out victorious since the people of this land love him unconditionally. Result of the 70's election was the same as he premeditated. Bangabandhu assured an overwhelming single majority. Being the leader of the majority party, he became not only the legitimate leader of East Pakistan but also of the entire Pakistan.

Yahya was then a mere appropriator of power. To have this ground, Bangabandhu started his long journey since 1948, and through the election of December 7, 1970, he achieved that milestone. Today, if Bangabandhu’s politics is revised, we will see his political sense of wisdom. The Election of 1970 was the basement of 1971’s Liberation of Bangladesh. From 1948 to 1970, after passing an impassable track Bangabandhu became the single leader of his country and people which made the country legally stand on a pedestal to achieve the long craved freedom. Afterwards, he had left a formal declaration of independence and exonerating his country from the Pakistani Military. Here, we notice his unimaginable cool-headedness for regulatory politics once again.

Regulatory Movement toward Liberation

After the victory of the 70's election, Bangabandhu understood Yahya wouldn’t transfer power to him peacefully. Yahya's intent was to substantiate Bangabandhu and his Party Awami League as separatist and banning Awami League. By arresting Bangabandhu, he would lengthen military rule. If we reassess Bangabandhu’s footing regarding contemporary politics, we will find he was proceeding in such a way Yahya himself will be marked as a segregationist. Even in 1972, in an interview with David Frost, Bangabandhu stated the same thing. He said, “We’re in the majority. Why should we come back? They should go.” So, this time we see, after 70’s election for the disposal of power in the name of discussion internationally statured diplomat Julfikar Ali Bhutto and Yahya Khan jointly fought against the strategy of Bangabandhu.

On January 10 and January 27, Yahya and Bhutto came to Dhaka one after another. Yahya, after a 4-day discussion, stated that Sheikh Mujib is going to be the Prime Minister of Pakistan. Bhutto, after his discussion, stated that his discussion was futile. Bangabandhu never drew any division line. Keeping patience, he simply prepared his countrymen and organisation to go ahead to his cherished target. In this time, patience exhibited from Bangabandhu’s part is certainly exemplary for any political leader of the world. All the time he was being informed that through the Sri Lankan route Pakistani troops were coming in plain-clothes. Cargos filled with ammunition and arms were anchored in the port. In spite of that, Bangabandhu remained calm but bold. Here, he plays the role of lover leader of Rabindranath- “Cruel leader has no time, but love has”. It means Yahya was the cruel lord who was restless but on the other hand, Bangabandhu’s heart was full of love with patience for Bengal and its people. He wished to see the last manoeuvring of Yahya. He understood that war was inevitable. But he was trying to be in the final victory with the lesser cost of blood. He knew that Yahya would choose the path of audacity and that was exactly what happened.

On March 1, Yahya postponed the National Assembly for an indefinite period by a radio speech. Bangabandhu's patriotic people stepped down to highway without even being called. Though a good number of people stepped onto the road, they continued regulatory movement under Bangabandhu’s instruction. Bangabandhu initiated non-cooperation and peaceful strike when the convening of the Constituent Assembly was suspended. Yahya’s military junta killed several people in various parts of the country which drove Bangabandhu to take action against him. Yet, he who is only comparable to the Himalayan, appeared in the public meeting of Ramna Racecourse with a complete calm and composed temperament. He was the only speaker.

The entire country was his audience, and the whole world was anxious about what would be said. On that public meeting, Bangalination on her thousand years’ history got the word ‘liberation’. Bangabandhu explicitly stated, “This struggle is the struggle for independence.” At the same time, he knew he couldn’t be physically present in the war. On the other hand, it will be best to fight a guerrilla war. That’s why in that speech, he gave all the necessary instructions how his countrymen would proceed. Above all, as the best democratic leader, he gave the most liberal definition of democracy for the whole world. He said, “If a person gives an opinion which is just, even after being the majority we would listen to that person.” He marked the limitation of democracy, in the disguise of majority, in such a way not even any political scientist could identify till today.

Apart from this, after March 1 and March 7, Bangabandhu officially took all the imperatives of the country upon his control. On March 16, Yahya returned to Dhaka incognito to while away the hours and checked over his military preparation in the name of discussion with Bangabandhu. Bangabandhu was still calm and composed because he was the winner. In an interview with a foreign journalist referring to Yahya as his a guest, Bangabandhu disseminated a bitter truth to people. Even he also stated that he’d not leave a single stone unturned in his hospitality towards his guest. Despite knowing everything, he continued the discussion with a military ruler, but Bangabandhu did not yield to Yahya in any debate.

Yahya was proven to be futile in dragging Bangabandhu toward any sequestration and dilly-dallied time till the evening of March 25. And then, he chose the extreme path of separation. On that very night, under Yahya’s instructions, a planned military operation was carried out creating a brutal mass homicide upon unarmed civilians to curb the Bengali nationalist movement.

To be continued