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Mujibnagar Quartet

November 8, 2011

In the early hours of 3rd November, when Risaldar Moslem and his killing squad gunned down key leaders of Awami League inside Dhaka Central jail just two and half months after the brutal murder of Father of the Nation, Bangladesh’s political destiny took a new course at gun point!

Tajuddin Ahmed, Nazrul Islam, Mansoor Ali and Kamrujjaman were prominent ministers of Mujibnagar Sarkar(Mujibnagar Government) formed in 1971. Tajuddinn Ahmed and his fellow ministers played an important role in the liberation struggle of Bangladesh while the Western, Chinese and Arab governments turned a blind eye to the ethnic cleansing of Bengalis in Bangladesh (then East Pakistan). They made a resolution that they would live without their families until Bangladesh got independence.

In Bangladesh, it is very difficult to know about these slain leaders as post 75 establishment is little interested to include details of their roles in text-books. Mostly enthusiastic individual researchers and family well-wishers took up the job of informing the new generation about their roles.

Why is the Mujibnagar quartet so important to Bangladeshis? They, most of the credit should go to Mr. Tajuddin Ahmed, organized the liberation movement, brought key different ideological groups under one umbrella, worked as a bridge between the grass-root people and the top echelon of the joint command, thwarted moves that could create split within the government, foiled attempts to sabotage liberation movement made by friend turned foe like Khondoker Mushtaq Ahmed, and applied the lessons learned from history.

The resemblance between Indian National Army and Mujibnagar Sarkar should worth mention. Both movements operated under a government. History once again repeated in 1971 because Mujibnagar Sarkar had PM like Tajuddin Ahmed who was an avid reader of history.

Tajuddin Ahmed was clear about the course of action during Mujib’s absence. That’s why he boldly led the Mujibnagar Sarkar and achieved the ultimate goal—liberation of Bangladesh. Without Taj, independent Bangladesh would remain a distant dream.

Mujib and Taj are like a winning pair. They are inseparable. It was Tajuddin who put Mujib’s words into action. Mujib was at the center of Pak military strategists’ thinking. They thought with the detention of Mujib Bengali liberation movement would wither away. But that did not happen. Mujib’s right hand Tajuddin, who maintained a subdued profile, was underestimated and changed everything.

Driving a wedge between Mujib and Tajuddin broke the wining duo, isolated Tajuddin from Mujib, undermined the Awami leadership and ultimately led to the fall of Awami regime. But that did not affect Tajuddin’s loyalty to Mujib. Few months after his forced resignation, he even went to his Mujib Bhai to warn him about an army conspiracy to assassinate him. His fears proved correct couple of months later.

Annihilating the architects was a diabolic ‘contingency plan’, might be years of cunning preparation, as described in Anthony Mascarenhas’s Bangladesh: A Legacy of Blood, aimed to reverse the identity of the country. Instead of a secular progressive country, it became a regressive one.

What does this loss mean to Bangladesh? Butchers had clear objectives: they wanted to make sure there would be no senior leaders who might challenge their authority, they wanted to make sure Bangladesh, even though managed to break away from Pakis, would become another vassal state, real-estate like Pakistan and remains a green patch, where their masters will play strategic cards and could use it as a bargaining chip in dealing with its big neighbors, on the saffron sari!

Political Fate of Bangladesh has been cursed since 1975. The country descended into spells of military coups and witnessed the rise of Islamists.

Loosing such brilliant and visionary leaders, who led the country to its independence, at early stages, was a deadly blow to the very idea of Bangladesh and it is still struggling to find leaders of their caliber.

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From → My Thoughts

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