FB   
 
Powered bysps
        Society for Policy Studies
 
 

 
When Pakistan questioned its history
Posted:Mar 12, 2015
 
Print
Share
  
increase Font size decrease Font size
 
 By Salil Tripathi 
 
21 February resonates with special meaning for Bangladeshis. That morning in 1952, hundreds of students of what was then known as Dacca University came to their campus to protest against restrictions placed on public assembly. The students were part of the movement that sought equal recognition for the language spoken most widely in East Bengal, and the mother tongue of most, Bangla. Bangladesh was part of Pakistan then, and the national language was Urdu. The police arrested some students, and more students went to demonstrate at the East Bengal Legislative Assembly. When some students attempted to enter the premises, police opened fire and several students were killed. For Bangla nationalists, 21 February became martyrs’ day; the language movement, which would ultimately culminate in what Bangladeshis call the war of liberation, and the country’s independence in 1971 was now unstoppable. On 21 February this year, I was in Lahore. I entered the hall at the impressive Alhamra Art Centre, the home of the Lahore Literary Festival, before a nearly-packed audience of Pakistanis, who were curious about my book, The Colonel Who Would Not Repent: The Bangladesh War and its Unquiet Legacy, published last November. The talented radical musician Taimur Rahman, who is part of the progressive group Laal, and teaches political science at the Lahore University of Management Sciences, had the unenviable task of steering a discussion about my book—and the 1971 war, which broke Pakistan—that was bound to reopen old wounds. My co-panelists were Sadaf Saaz Siddiqi, a poet from Dhaka who has worked for the rehabilitation of birangonas, as the Bangladeshi women who survived sexual violence in 1971 are known, and the brave human rights activist from Lahore, Hina Jilani, who protested against the war and would later during that hour tell us about her experience of trying to get Pakistanis to oppose violence in East Pakistan by signing petitions on Mall Road in Lahore, only to be ridiculed, and she recalled others telling her they were occasionally spat at.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Print
Share
  
increase Font size decrease Font size
 

Disclaimer: South Asia Monitor does not accept responsibility for the views or ideology expressed in any article, signed or unsigned, which appears on its site. What it does accept is responsibility for giving it a chance to appear and enter the public discourse.
Comments (Total Comments 0) Post Comments Post Comment
Review
 
 
 
 
Thirteen year old Bhuma (name changed) spends his day at home. He does not go to school, or play with children in his neighborhood to avoid being laughed at.
 
read-more
A pre-dawn  suicide terror attack (fidayeen)  on an army camp in the Kupwara district of Jammu and Kashmir on Thursday (April 27)   resulted in the death of three army personnel including an officer,  while two terrorists were neutralized. Combing operations are in progress to ascertain if any of the attackers have
 
read-more
The April 13 Mother of All Bombs (MOAB) strike by the United States on ISIS terrorists in Afghanistan has triggered suggestions that a second round of the Cold War is set to begin. Particularly as the new US President, Donald Trump, seems to be brash, abrasive and capable of taking action without thinking of consequences.
 
read-more
India should be extremely wary of any Trump involvement on the Kashmir issue because he would do anything to bring India to the table, writes Dr. Susmit Kumar for South Asia Monitor.
 
read-more
The core parts of the controversial Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile system have been moved to the site of what had been a golf course in southern South Korea.
 
read-more
spotlight image Mahmoud Ahmadinejad sprang a surprise when he registered himself as a candidate in Iran’s presidential election scheduled for May 19. After leaving the office of President in 2013 at the end of two controversial terms, the firebrand populist has been largely inactive in politics. 
 
read-more
spotlight image I am honored to be here today for the first U.S. government exchange alumni conference for India and Bhutan.
 
read-more
Health of the citizens and the economy of the nation they inhabit go hand in hand and every buck spent on former guarantees a manifold increase in the latter,  said noted public health expert K Srikant Reddy. The lecture 'Health and Development: India Must Bridge the Disconnect' was ...
 
read-more
Column-image

Title: Bollywood Boom; Author: Roopa Swaminathan; Publisher: Penguin; Price: Rs 399; Pages: 221

 
Column-image

Title: Defeat is an Orphan: How Pakistan Lost the Great South Asian War; Author: Myra Macdonald; Publisher: Penguin Random House India; Pages: 328; Price: Rs 599

 
Column-image

  The story of Afghanistan -- of the war against the Soviets and of terrorism that has gripped the landlocked country ever since -- is in many ways also the story of diplomat Masood Khalili, who motivated his people and led them...

 
Column-image

Title: The Golden Legend; Author: Nadeem Aslam; Publisher: Penguin Random House; Pages: 376; Price: Rs 599

 
Column-image

Over the Years, a collection of 106 short articles, offers us interesting sidelights on the currents and cross- currents in the public life of India during two distinctive periods: (I) 1987 to 1991 and (II ) 2010 to the present.

 
Subscribe to our newsletter
Archive