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Dhaka Divide: Not hartal but look for alternatives December 1, 2011

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH.

To protest Dhaka divide, common people and citizen groups staged protest at the Shahid Minar premises. BNP protests and calls hartal on the 4th of December 2011. Mayor Sadek Hussain Khola filed petition in the High Court against the split.

But hartal is not the answer to protest the move. Hartal affects the normal living of the city dwellers. Every citydwellers from a school child to shopkeepers to office goers are physically affected. The economic earning of everyone will be affected in anyway. It will affect more at the individual level that the government. It will affect the state more that the government. The industries may remain closed and factories are ill-attended. Banks and other financial instituations will not act properly. All these do not represent what city dwellers want. 
If you take vote of citizens of whether they like hartal as the means to protest the divide , most of the them will vote against it.
 Also a hartal will make the situation politically more complex. There will be processions, unwanted vandalism, peace- meal battles with the law enforcers, random arrest of the activists and innocents, filing of cases etc. It will take people to nowhere , rather it will make the people more alinieted from the cause. The program will be turned into a more political agenda than a mass issue.

People want to protest against the move without affecting the individual living and state economy.

Is there any means to serve the both end of the issue ?

In Egypt, peope gathered at Tahrir Square to symbolise their protest. In USA, people occupied wall street to express their protest.

But these might not practical alternatives for Bangladesh. But what is important is to register the support of people and to adopt a means where people can participate spontaneously and in mass.

How about to make a common platform from all walks of life and call for ‘Stand still’ initially for 5 monutes on a specific date and time when all the people on the streets, offices and at homes ( and traffics on the roads) will stand still to show their protest against the Dhaka Divide. The time for stand still may be increased as the days pass on till the authority reverse their decision.

The spontaniety and magnitude of the masses would be the strength of this protest and the Government will feel the pulse of the people and may reverse it’s decision.

An ordinary citizen


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