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Justice Habibur Rahman on media June 18, 2012

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Justice Habibur Rahman made some hard observations on the media in his speech on Freedom of Speech’ organised by the Journalism Training and Research Initiative on 5th May at Dhaka.
One of the observations of him is that the newspaper industry is now a big investment sector. Money and trade is a common game there.
‘Journalists and authorities are trying to please each other’.
‘Newspaper become a subservient one’.
‘Freedom of newspaper owners is considered as freedom of the press’.
‘There is limited freedom of press in Bangladesh’.
‘Only a handful of readers can know whose interests the editors or publishers are serving under the cover of this respect.’
‘From loan defaulters and land grabbers to military and non-military intelligence are financing the publication of newspapers’.
‘Investing in newspapers has become lucrative to the rich who often do not hesitate to publish something in print for immediate gains or creating panic and defeating rivals.’
‘Due to lack of security, the door for free journalism is getting closed. In such a situation, journalists will have to look after their own interests’
‘At least for the sake of getting justice, the two unions of journalists will have to be united, and I want to live with this hope.’
‘288 journalists became victims in 154 incidents. Of them, 101 suffered repression for publishing reports while 110 were assaulted while covering news events and 47 came under attack by law enforcers.’
‘Journalists were now divided into two factions and that social and political rogues were deriving clear advantage from such a divide’.

[The source is Daily Star]

An ordinary citizen

Abdullah Abu Sayeed, Parliament and Facebook June 15, 2012

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Speaker of the parliament Abdul Hamid Siddique decided to expunge the unacceptable words uttered in the parliament few days back. Quoting a newspaper, an independent member of the parliament raised the issue and two other members of the parliament brushed Professor Abdullah Abu Sayeed in a language not usually heard of against a teacher of his rank. On the day House even demanded to bring Abdullah Abu Sayeed to the parliament to seek apology. Neither the Speaker nor the Deputy Speaker was present on the day of occurance.
It was the Deputy Speaker who first said that Parliament did wrong in dishonoring a respected man like Professor Abu Sayeed. TIB protested the incident in the parliament and submitted a record of the address that Abdullah Abu Sayeed gave in its meeting. Professor Abdullah Abu Sayeed also denied the allegation.

It was found that some papers distorted his speech and the some members not following the parliamentary proceedings made casual comments.

What he actually said is reported in the Daily Star as ‘The Daily Star has learned what the noted litterateur had actually said at the event of Transparency International Bangladesh. It is not corruption when a thief steals, but when a man who has undertaken to follow ethics, rule and the law indulges in stealing then it becomes corruption, Prof Sayeed said.’ He didn’t remark MPs as thieves.

The comments of the MPs on one of the greatest teachers of our time sparks through the Facebook and drew angry reactions.
Only the prudence of the speakers save the government from further embarrassment.

An ordinary citizen

Professor Muzaffer Ahmed remembered June 14, 2012

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We have seen Professor Muzaffer Ahmed as a third voice of the country. He was always keen to organise the good citizens and to develop a citizen movement against corruption and for the good governance in Bangladesh.
He was Chairman of Sujan (Citizens for Good Governance) for long and led TIB (Transparency International Bangladesh) for years. He also worked as environmental activist.
He died recently in his seventies but he was alert and expressed his concern till his last days against the misdeeds that are occurring in our surrounding.
People remembered him. But to me the best article that I have read is ‘Tribute to a Departed Comrade’ written by his friend Rehman Sobhan, the leading economist of the country.

An ordinary citizen

Dr. Yunus was proposed for World Bank President but he refused March 23, 2012

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, PERSONALITY, Yunus.
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Bangladesh Prime Minister Sk. Hasina proposes Dr. Yunus name for the the post of World president in a meeting with the envoy of EU. The proposal caught everybody off guard as nobody thought of Hasina would propose Dr. Yunus for the post.
So far Sk. Hasina kept no stone upturned to malign the image of Dr. Yunus in a serices of acts. The last action of her was removal of Dr. Yunus from the post of Chairman of Grameen Bank after 30 years of service to the bank that he had founded.
Dr. Yunus took the proposal as the change of heart of the Prime Minister.
But he refused to be president of the World Bank, rather he is more concern with the state of the Grameen Bank and wants to serve Grameen Bank longer period.
Will Prime Minister pay hid to the intention of Dr. Yunus ?

Dr. Muhammad Yunus: Bangladesh new antihero? March 18, 2011

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Dr. Muhammad Yunus is struggling with the government and the court for his post of managing director of Grameen Bank. His personal appeal to the finance minister and explanation to the Bangladesh Bank all went in vein. His appeal to the High Court has been rejected. His counsels compelled to take the refuge to the Supreme court. After hearing on the first day from Dr. Kamal Hussain on merit of the case, supreme court suspends the case for 15 days. The attempts taken by Dr. Yunus, his counsels and Board of Directors so far couldn’t tilt the determination of the government to reconsider its decision.

A parallel current is also flowing at the same time. The board of directors , the borrowers and the beneficiaries of Grameen stand by the side of Dr. Yunus. They are not small in number. About 4 crore people are directly or indirectly connected with Grameen Bank. They are expressing their support for Dr.Yunus and worry for Grameen.

The citizens are reassessing the contribution of Grameen to the economy and judging the commitment and character of Dr. Yunus against the contemporary politicians.

Are the people of Bangladesh reinventing their lost hope in Dr. Yunus?

Is Dr. Yunus Bangladesh new antihero?

An ordinary citizen

A Jyoti Basu February 2, 2010

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When I came across the name of Jyoti Basu, he was the Chief Minister of the West Bengal. He was virtually reigning the state for long. I was impressed by his tanacity, prudence and acceptibility by the people.
Being a communist leader, he didn’t abandon the democratic path, rather exercised it to ascend to the power of the state. When the Communism in Russia was collasping, his example of statemanship, cited an incident for others and keep the communism survived in the modern era. He served for long 23 years from 1977 to 2000 as the Chief Minister of West Bengal,the longest for any democratically elected leader, against Mahatir’s 22 years in Malayasia.

I was following the moments when he was offered the Prime Ministership of India from the winning coalition, but he refused the offer as his party didn’t approve it. It is one of the greatest instance of party loyalty as I know. I couldn’t imagine such loyalty to the party from any of our leaders.

Before the state election in 2000, he declared that he wouldn’t hold the chief ministership. People and party activists insisted him, but he remain sticked to his decision. His party won the election and Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee became his successor. This changeover might be the part of his plan to help the CPI(M) to keep the power of the state in it’s hand.

He was criticised for the low investment in the West Bengal in comparison to other states. But in his long tenure, he introduced the Panchayet system and tried to empower the common people through strengthening the local governments which also strengthened the democracy in the state. Communal harmony was strictly maintaned during his period and no major untoward events happened in West Bengal due to effect of Babri Mosque and Kashmir issue.

I was bewildered when I heard that he was a Barrister from UK but he didn’t practice law but preferred to work among among the railway workers after coming back from London on the directives of the party leaders. He later became vateran labour leader and elected to the state parliament for successive times.

He also donated his body and eye for the resarch in the medical science.

It is sweet to know that he hailed from Bangladesh and soil of Bangladesh is fertile to produce such a dedicated leader. In this present political crisis and economic challenge, Bandgladesh needs leaders like him.

Not necessarily, one will have to accept his political idealism, he is a symbol of dedication and commitment to one’s cause wih strongest party loyalty, integriity of character and a man of knowledge and prudence.

Born on 8 July 1914, he passes away at the age of 96 years on 17 January 2010, leaving us and remaining as an inspiration to face the challenges of the time.

An ordinary citizen (from Bangladesh)

Link: Joyti Basu-Wikepedia

Shykh Seraj-a man dedicated to revolutionize the agriculture in Bangladesh February 13, 2008

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Shykh Seraj

Shykh Seraj had a program by the name ‘Maati O Manush’ in early 90s in the BTV, the only TV channel in Bangladesh available then. The program was also quite popular then and had workrd as a tool for the boom in poultry, livestock and agriculture in our country. People from all walks of life from farmers to academicians were used to enjoy the program.

For recording and reporting the program he had to visit different corners of the country. I had a small encounter with him when he came to our area to record a poultry farm over the roof and few livestock in the courtyard of a house. The boy who developed the poultry was a university student then. In this way Shykh Seraj motivated thousands of educated young and taught thousands of farmers on modern day technique of farming, the scope of fisheries and the art of poultry and livestock.

With the change of Government in 96, his program stopped and we missed him a lot. But within years he and his friends organized a TV channel and he restarted the program with a new name ‘Hidoye Maatii O Manush. Does the name signify anything? Does it indicate his cherished commitment to his ealier program? Likely.

We, the people of Bangladesh again started to enjoy the progrom with a new vision on agriculture and agriculturist.

In recent months the Adviser for Agriculture Dr. S. Karim also attended many field programs with Shykh Seraj and both tried to motivate people for better use of fertilizer, for better agriculture and to convey the message of the government to bridge up the difference between the farmers and the government.

We also enjoyed the programs recorded on the soil of other countries like China and see how agricultural and business opportunities may be created.

His recent introduction is the ‘ Krishsi Katha’ (News on Agriculture) as a component of regular news bulletin in Channel Eye, which is informing people and policy makers with progress and problems of agriculture in Bangladesh.

His presentation is unique and encouraging.. One of the best presentations to me is ‘Agriculture and farmers in Budget.’. He also talked with the Council of Advisers and Chief Adviser and made presentations before them on how to make the budget agriculture-friendly.

This man has been working relentlessly to revolutionize agriculture in our country deserves a national recognition. The government should think over it.

One of the sad scenarios in our country is that we don’t and can’t recognize a man when he deserves most for any case. We only recognize when someone else from outside world recognizes one.

The agricultural organizations and institutions should also ponder over his contribution and recognize him and support him to better disseminate his ideas to the people.

Shykh Seraj represents the spirit of ‘New Bangladesh’- a nonpartisan and more professional approach to solve the basic problems of Bangladesh.

An ordinary citizen

27 Feb 2008

Channel Eye of which Shayeek Siraj is one of the senior Executives declared Krishi Medal for 2008 and Keramat Ali who changes the fate of thousands of farmers by pioneering shrimp cultivation in southern Bangladesh got the prize.

4 Mar 2008

Shykh Siraj has recently presented few episodes from the sea in Thiland and from Vietnam. In Thailand episodes he projected the scientific utilization of the sea fish and mney earned by it. The Vietnam episodes described the dramatic improvement of agriculture in Vietnam by utilising the river resources, hybrid crops and use of local technology to improve their agriculture.

12 March 2008

Last few days SJ was telling from the ‘Haor area’ of Kishorganj where vast water areas remain underutilised and the fishermen and farmers are suppressed by the money lenders.

14 March 2008

He was speaking on the better seed availability to the farmers. Governmnet organisations can only supply part of the need and the quality of the seed is not good also. To compensate the deficit, a private initiative ‘Barendra seed production Project’ is producing seeds and also giving training to the farmers.

5 May 2008

SS is now working on improving the health care service of the farmers in collaboration with Japan Bangladesh friendship Hospital.

28 Ocober 2009
When the ordinary citizen was feeling frustrtaed over the lack of response from the Government and other acdemic institutions to recognise the contribution of Shykh Seraj, FAO the UN body on food and agriculture bestowed it’s award on him.[Ds]

Rabindranath Tagore and Bangladesh August 9, 2007

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rabi-2.jpg On the last 6th August, 2007  66th death anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore  was observed. In Bangladesh the occasion was observed with pomp and pride. The TV channels broadcast different programs, the newspapers and magazines published articles and reviews and different cultural and social organizations exibit  their performances. 

Rabindranath is the greatest poet of Bengal. His wonderful creations not only confined to poetry, he virtually left no field of literature untraded in his lifetime and every field of literature in Bengali was illuminated by his touch whether it is song, story, novel, drama, travel or essays. His influence is such that neither his contemporaries nor the following generation could come out of his style and influence completely.

He is the only Nobel Laureate in Literature in Bengali; also only in the Sub-Continent.  That was in 1913 that he got the prize. After so many years Bengali  language could not produce any giant except Kazi Nazrul Islam, our poet of revolution.

Rabindranath Tagore is not only a poet of West Bengal. He is equally honoured and equally respected in Bangladesh. You cannot confine a language with borders. So he will be read and respected wherever there is Bengali spoken people are staying. Many of his literature were written in Bangladesh territory,in Shilaidaha and Sajadpur. 

Most important, one of his songs ‘Amar Sonar Bangla, Ami Tomai Bhalobashi……’ is the national anthem of Bangladesh.

Rabindranath became a part of  the culture and part of the identity of Bangladesh; religion didn’t  cause any hindrance in this assimilation.


Dr. Yunus in ‘Council of Elders’ July 21, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, PERSONALITY, Yunus.
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A new humanitarian alliance by the name ‘ Council of Elders’ was formed by the  global leaders on the 89th birthday of Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg, South Africa  

The ‘Elders’ is dedicated to find new ways to foster peace and resolve global crises, to support next generation of leaders.

The E’lders’ include  along with Mandela, Dr. Muhammad Yunus, Carter, Tutu, Koffi Annan, Ela Bhatt, a women’s right campaigner from India; former Norwegian Prime Minister Go Harlem Brudtland; Li Zhaoxing, a former Chinese envoy to the UN, who started his diplomatic carrier in Africa, Mandela’s wife Gracia Machei, a longtime campaigner for children’s right and  former Iris President Mary Robinson.


There are seven Nobel Laureattes in the group including Dr. Yunus.  


Dr. Yunus wins again July 3, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, PERSONALITY, Yunus.
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dr-yunus.jpgDr Yunus has been chosen  as one of the best Social Entrepreneurs of the world of all times. This selection was made and published in the Business Week on the last 27th June 2007.

Business Week said that Dr. Yunus started his banking system by giving small loans to the village poor. Most of these loans are given to the women folk of the village. These women invest their money in different small agricultural and handicraft enterprises.

It continues that Grameen Bank which  was established by Dr. Yunus now has 2422  branches. From its inception it has given more than 600 crore dollars as loan to the poor. Loan holders are also the main shareholders of the Bank. Grameen Bank became profitable within 3 years of it’s stablishments.

Other great entrepreneurs who are in the list include  Bejamin Franklin(1706-1790), John D Rokfeller(1857-1945), Tomas Adison (1847-1901), Henry Ford (1863-1947), Azim Premji (1945), Oprah Winfrey(1954).

If, now retrospectively, we see how our leaders evaluated him, it will embarrass us, if not them. They tried to knock him out by malicious propaganda and false accusations because of the interest he had shown to come to politics.

He has not only withdrawn himself from politics but  also withdrawn himself from the media and society also.

He had shown his good gesture to change the face of our politics and the fate of our country but we cound’t accept that.

A few days back, he had his 68th birthday passed in a very simple way  in Dhaka.

Still then, he will be remembered as the first Nobel Laureate of Bangladesh and one the greatest  Social Enterpreneurs of all times. 

He will remain as a symbol of dedication, simplicity and greatness for the generations to come of our country and of the world.