Reached Brigade Mess
After reaching the suite at the mess I contacted my fellow revolutionaries at Benghazi first and I explained everything to them.
I told them that Col. Rashid had already visited 2Fd Arty Regt. Faruk after taking over Bogra Garrision has started preparing to move to Dhaka. I had also told them that I had rejected Zia’s request. Conclution of my assessment of the whole situation is that, it would not be difficult at all to oust Gen. Zia from the seat of power through any armed action at present as the members of Sena Parisad and most of the other members of armed forces are fuming in rage against his outrageous brutalities but it would not be possible to face the aggration of Indian forces deployed all around Bangladesh with a confused and devided nation. The present situation is far more complicated compared to that of 2-3 November. In view of these realities, the only way out to protect the greater national interst would be to persuade Faruk and Rashid convincingly some how to realize these realities and ask them to refrain from taking any kind of reckless armed action. I think other than this nothing else could stop disastrous consequence. Now let me know your openion what I should do? Col. Pasha on behalf of all told
Sir, you are present on the spot so, considering every aspect do whatever you deem it appropriate to save the country. We all have confidence on your wisdom and capabilities.
Thus our conversation finished. There after Col. Mahbub briefly exchanged Salam and Dua with all of them.
I tryed to contact Col. Rashid but could not get him. I learned that he has left 2Fd Regt. So, I called Faruk. Knowing that it was me who had called, Faruk received the call.
Coming in this way without informing any one of us what are you going to do?
I want to teach the betrayer a lesson.
Zia had betrayed, there is no doubt about that. But soon after I have stepped down on the soil of Dhaka whatever I learnt that the situation now is much more complicated than 2-3 November. If you are prepared to listen then I can explain this more in details.
I want to teach the betrayer a lesson.
Tell me what you have got to say, I shall listen.
Whome ever I talked, all held more or less the same openion about the previlant situation in the country and Gen. Zia. Betraying with the spirit and ideals of the 15th August armed uprising and the revolutionaries he had taken himself away denying any relation with us to do his power politics of compromise in his own way. He has also already compromised with India to secure his political interest. For the same reason he somehow managed to create an positive image as a pro people leader with his gimic to go around the villages wearing torn vest and spade on shoulder exicuting his program of digging the canals and making roads which the ordinary people of the rural areas had never seen before. On the other hand he had cold blooedly murdered around three thousand members of the armed forces and civilian revolutionaries through stage managed uprisings. Many had been jailed with the plee to restore stability in the armed forces and the country. Due to such immoral ruthless actions almost entire armed forces are fuming in anger with their wounds to take revenge. Under such circumstances I believe, it wouldn’t be difficult at all to over throw Zia and his cohorts. But taking the opportunity of any armed confrontation should Indian government decides to establish another government with AWAMI-BKSALITES in exile and in response of it’s call invade Bangladesh to get this government reinstalled in power under the 25 years treaty of peace and friendship then would it be possible to face that aggression with a confused and divided nation? In such aggression Soviet Axis would provide all out support to India. But could we be sure of getting such assurance of all out support from any world power? The news is, Zia by now had also succeeded in his efforts to establish some kind of positive image in the Western world and oil rich Kingdoms and Sheikhdoms of the Middle East. We have not got any such scope yet to develop any such relation internationally.
In view of such realities, it can be said for certain that India would be able to reinstall AWAMI-BKSALITES in power very easily. As a result the country would become a client state of India and the nation would turn into slaves. This time to protect the AWAMI-BKSAL government the Indian armed forces would entrenched themselves firmly in Bangladesh and gradually national armed forces, police, BDR would be demolished and rebuild afresh with the party caders and members of abolished Rakkhi Bahini. India will provide all necessary assistance in this regard. We had left the country on 4th November besides other tactical reasons to deny India any opportunity for invasion and from Bangkok succeeded to over throw Brig Khaled and his cohorts. At present in no way it is possible to overthrow Zia from power through any armed confrontation directly or indirectly. He has to be confronted politically. Last but not the least let’s take if we become successful to oust Zia from power. In that case, we would have to retire all officers who are senior to us. The situation that would be created with such a move, do you think India would leave that opportunity not to be exploited? Surely not. Therefore, just removing Zia what you would be gaining that you must think as well.
In short we shall win the battle but lose the war and 8 Crores of Muslims would turn into perpetual slaves under the Hindus and Bangladesh will become a vassal State. In the process do you want that we should go down in history as National Traitors like Brig. Khaled, Col. Safayet and their cohorts? Choice is yours. Think diligently and act accordingly. I do not know about Rashid but rest of us would not be a party to this anti national adventure. Faruk was listning silently what I was telling. After I finished he asked
Anything else you want to say?
No, I think I said it all whatever I wanted to convey.
All right then, I have listened all that you have coveyed attentively, I shall decide to do whatever after due deliberation thanks. Faruk dropped the line.
There after I called Gen. Zia and said that I had talked to Faruk and suggested to call Faruk’s father and convince him to go to Bogra. Taking my suggestion he contacted Faruk’s father and requested him to go to Bogra and convince Faruk not to take such a devastating move. Faruk’s father could evaluate the gravity of the situation and agreed for the greater national interest to go to Bogra to talk to Faruk and make him understand the negative consequence of any armed confrontation he was contemliting. He flew in an army helicopter along his daughter Yasmeen and returned to Dhaka along with Faruk. For the truce Faruk had placed a demand to Gen. Zia that when multy party politics would resume Zia must allow him to participate in politics which Gen. Zia had accepted. Cleaver Zia at that time under pressure had no other option but to accept Faruk’s demand. There after both Col. Rashid and Col. Faruk left Dhaka.
After the fiasco was over one day I was again called at CMLA’s office. As I entered Zia’s office he left his chair and came forward to welcome me shaking hands as usual. Agenda for discussion was our future. He stared
I must thank you for your sincere advice and what all you have done to defuse the explosive situation.
I had done nothing much. It was Faruk who had changed his mind himself after due consideration.
I have come to know everything.
With out giving any answer I became mindful sipping my coffee. Zia also was pricking the bites on his plate with fork at the same time got absorved in some thought. After a short pause, he started speaking
I must thank you for your sincere advice and what all you have done to defuse the explosive situation.
Dalim, to me all of you are praise worthy particularly, I respect you affectionately. I am not that close with others but my association with you dates back from the days at Kakul. I am stating with out any hesitation that all of you are far more matured politically compared to your age. Zia was not well versed with Bangla so always he used to mix Bangla and English in his conversation. He can’t be blamed for that. Because, though his paternal ancesters hail from Gabtoli in Bogra of the then East Pakistan. From his childhood till the beginning of the liberation war all most his entire life he had spent in West Pakistan.
you all are undoubtedly selfless patriots and progressive minded revolutionaries. After the 7th November, I had to take the responsibility of running the country in an unprecedented unstable situation. Tactfully shrewd Zia avoided uttering a single word about 15th August. He even did not mention that the successful armed uprising of 15th August had any link with 7th November’s soldiers and people’s revolution. He continued
Since then I am trying to bring back stability and normalcy not only in the armed forces but in the country as a whole. But I need to work harder to achieve required stability. For that, I feel it would be easier for me if you are kept abroad for some more time.
Since then I am trying to bring back stability and normalcy not only in the armed forces but in the country as a whole. But I need to work harder to achieve required stability.
So that you don’t have to remain idle that period of time in Libya and can work for the greater interest of the country and its people as my representatives I have decided to post you all with Diplomatic assignment in Bangladesh Missions of those countries whose assisstence and support is vital for Bangladesh to stand with its head high protecting our self identity against the threat of a country like India. That kind of fraternal close relation can never be developed by any ordinary diplomat. I firmly believe, all of you are capable of doing that. I am proposing this with lot of hopes. The decision would be entirely yours to accept or not to accept my proposal. But I shall humbly suggest that please think prudently before you all take the decision. Don’t disappoint me. As he finished, Gen. Zia looked at me eggarly expecting an reply. Listning to his submission I thought not to reply because that would be nothing but talking to deaf ears. Later I thought as the opportunity presented itself, I should avail the opportunity to give a bit of my mind to Zia. It may not have any affect on his conscious but for the historians my words would remain as factual materials worth analyzing to seek truth.
Sir, whether your proposal would be acceptable or not that decision would be comunicated to you on my return after due consultation with all others at Benghazi. It needs no further elaboration. If you permit then as an old companion and co-fighter, I would like to say a few words before leaving.
Speak, what do you want to say?
After the 7th November revolution as decided earlier you were reinstalled as the Chief again by the revolutionaries of 15th August. Sena Parisad spear headed the 7th November revolution and played vanguard role being the main force. Col. Taher and few cells of Biplobi Shoinik Sangstha under him was an tactical ally playing a subordinate role. You are fully aware of this fact. After knowing everything just after saddlig on the seat of power you decided to trod a different path betraying with the spirit and ideas of 15th August revolution, sever all connection with the commited revolutionaries and Sena Parisad’s future action programe. Now you are harping aloud that you never had any connection with the revolutions or the revolutionaries. With such false propaganda one might be be able to suppress the truth but at the appropriate time truth always prevails as a part of history. This is the teaching of social science. Misinterpritation of the world ‘Revolution’ is an age old phenomenon to haunt the people around the Globe. The word simply means ‘Quick Change’. The human civilization is moving forward compitable with new knowledge and scientific discovery. But the fruit of this progressive development never could be tested by the vast majority of world population. A handful coteries comprised of members of some vested interested powerful famiies had been enjoying all the fruits in an unjust and exploitative world order depriving the vast majority of their rights be during Imperialism, colonialism or neo-colonialism. To perpetuate their exploitation they have invented various kind of state structure, political system, Judiciary, laws, administration, law enforcing agencies and defense force to protect any external and internal threat.
This aggrasive usurpers with their money and muscle power deceitfully succeeded in most of the countries to create a compredor class in nature with their lakys.
All these domesticated monkys at times take the robe of Democracy, Dictatorship, Autocracy or Plutocracy just to clinch on state power to serve self interest and their forein masters creating a conflict of interest with the vast majority of the people and national interest.
In most of the countries of the 3ed world there is hardly any difference in character between the ruling parties and the opposition parties. Because, their root is ingrained in the same vested interested quarters. Overtly, they compete with each other for power but that is based on compromise. They all get united aganst the people’s interest. At the present erra after IT explosion the exploited and persecuted people at every corner of the Globe has more or less have awakened and had caought this bluff. Their awareness is also getting sharper. This is why around the world people are rising in protest and organizing defencive struggles against aggressive, expansionist and imperialist powers. All such just and defensive struggles of the people are being termed as ‘Terrorism’ or ‘Fundamentalism’ etc and the protesters are identified as terrorists. Inspite of such malicious propaganda in the presnt exploitative world order is becoming more and more instable and down slide is visible every where.
The people of Bangladesh regardless of class and creed joined the liberation war with the expectation of a genuine and just independence. To materialize that spirit and dream and to demolish the far fetched conospiratorial dream of the Chanakyas to turn newly independent Bangladesh into a client state we had created an covert revolutionary organization and you became a member of that at your will under oath. Like many other things you might have forgotten even this, when you kept aside as an unacceptable person it was me who had gone secretly to your aboard at Kallyani and spent hours after hours discussing how we would build our organization in the light of political science, how step by step we would bring you at the top of the state power as a national leader to implement the spirit of ’71 and the charished dream. Expressing full confidence in our vision, goal, ideals, principles and political programe you promised to work life long with us.
But in this arduous long struggle after going through many ups and down removing mountain like irremovable hurdles with undaunted fortitude and lot of sacrifices when we succeeded victoriously to flung open the gate of opportunity right at that moment you decided to trod on the opposite direction. It had never been possible to achieve people’s rights compromising with the national and international vested interested groups in the past and shall never be possible in future as well. You would realize this truth in time.
With the excuse of bring back stability you have cleverly decided to disperse us abroad. But the main reason of present instability within the armed forces is your own actions. It would not be possible for you to accept this fact at this moment. But the fire which you have ignighted will not die down. I am unaware of the consequences that you might have thought, however, I do not think that the end result would not be very good for you. The people with whom you are going to do your politics, most of them are self seeking opportunist power mongers. So, you better be careful. The self seeking oppurtunsts can do anything for their interest. They can lick your boots and can break the neck if need be. I had been associated with politics as a student therefore, whatever I stated is from my practical experience not from the books.
Sir, sitting at the pinacle of power it is hard to judge the charecter of any person. That is only possible at that trying time when some one is struggling. You have bought and gathered around new found people of confidence considering your tested co-fighters to be your opponants for the sake of power politics to be the king not for the politics of people which is known as ‘king of Politics’ most superior in nature. There are lot of dangers in the kind of politics you have chosen. I shall finish assuring you that where ever each one of us may decide to stay, shall be working sincerely for the interest of the nation and the country, not for any individual. I thank you for giving me time and your patient hearing. I shall be leaving the country within a few days for Benghazi via London. I shall remain in touch with Shishu Bhai so you would be able to know all about my where about and movements. I am leaving Sir, Allah Hafez. I came out from his office.
Since Faruk’s arrival and departure most of my time I had spent at the cantonment. After returning to Malibagh I found all my near relations were anxiously waiting for me with great concern as in those days I used to get my clothings and daily necessities through the driver and used to tell Mahua over phone not to worry as I was okay. They were inquisitive to know what all had happened behind the sceen after Col. Faruk’s arrival. What decision had been taken regarding our future. In this millee it was Mahua who said
Let Bhaiya be freshed after taking some rest then we shall listen everything. Bhaiya, you better call Nimmi right away as poor Nimmi is passing every moment in agonizing starain.
Yes, I must do that. You better call and get her on line. Mahua called Nimmi and handed over the receiver to me.
Hearing my voice Nimmi broke into tears and said
Whenever I called and wanted to talk to you, Mohua and Keya every time replied that you are very busy but safe in the cantonment.
Consoling her I said
With selfless commitment if some responsibility for the greater cause is taken then Allah become his custodian and provider. You had got the proof this truth on the night of 2-3 November ’75. At 1AM in Bangabhaban I told you, ‘you go away to some safe place, I am going to the cantonment to talk to Khaled Bhai with Nur. If I remain alive then we shall meet again, otherwise Allah hafez. In reply you chated some Dua and Durud and said with intearful eyes I an leaving you in the hands of Allah, He will protect you. With your prayers by the grace of Allah after strenuous discussion from the early hours of that night till after noon of 4th November we succeeded to save the country from the unprecedented disaster and returned to you. After reaching I could apprehend something unpalatable is going to happen that is why, inspite of your insistence to accompany me to Dhaka, I did not agree and left you at London. I shall tell you all what had happened after reaching London. Jaan trust me, though you were not with me but I knew your prayers would be with there that had inspired me that and as a result, could handle a much more complicated crisis as compared to that of 2-3 November night successfully and returning to you in 3-4 days In Sha Allah. So. Nothing to be worried at all. There after I exchanged Salam Dua with others and drop the line and went straight to bathroom to freshen up. While leaving I requested Mahbub to confirm my seat within 2-3 days for London. Meanwhile, Mohua and Keya layed the table for lunch.
We had lunch all together. Mohua is very intelligent. Though a lady of few words but she keeps everything under watch and manages everything. Keya on the other hand very open hearted and talkative. Due to commonalities in character Mohua and Nimmi had been best friends. The table was full of delicasis of ny liking. After lunch Mahbub before leaving told everyone present
You all must force Sir to take some rest. He has gone through extremely strenuous time all these days. Saying so he begged excuse and left.
After Mahbub’s departure we all were relaxing. suddenly, our dear family friend Shahdat Choudhury(Shacho), the editor of weekly Bichitra arrived. He rushed to our house knowing that I am back to Malibagh. His curly hairs were hey wild and the face with thick glasses gave a tired look. Entering the room as he saw me he said
Dalim, Right now you got to go with me to some place. I came straight from the office.
Just change quickly, he commanded and I went to my room to comply with.
Your face is suggestibg you did not have your lunch so come and have something before leaving said Mahua.
Got it right, let’s go said Shacho and went to the dinning room with Mahua. Befor he finished I returned and engired
The summon seems to be very urgent.
We shall talk in the car. To talk while eating against Sunnat wity Shacho replied. He finished the lunch in a haist, took a Paan and lighted a cigarrate and told all present that we would be returning within around two hours. We would be going in my car so we both got into his car. Shacho was driving fast. I realized, some one must be waiting for us somewhere.
Whats up, where are you taking me like Sharlok Holmes?
Gen. Manjur is waiting for you.
A bright self conscious high nosed officer of Pakistan Army known as ‘Guderian’ hardly mixed around with his juniors particularly Bengali officers. He always maintained a distance. His wife was a bit ahead of him in this regard. Long after us he had crossed over through Sialkot sector as the Brigade Major along with his family, Taher and Ziauddin and joined the l;iberation war. Taher was suppose to be with us in our escape mission from Quetta but during the planning stage unexpectedly suddenly he was posted to Baluch Centre at Abottabad so he could not accompany us. I have written in detail about this inmy book Untold Facts(Ja Dekhechi Ja Bujhechi Ja Korechi). Later when Col. Osman was removed as the sector cmmander of No8 sector on charges of corruption Manjur replaced him. At that time I was working as the Guerrilla Adviser in that sector as well but even then I could not develop any intimacy with him. As he loved to maintain distance so none of us also tried to develop any intimacy with him. He all through has remained extremely carefull about his crareer.
After the independence till 15th August, whatever had happened between the armed forces and the government he kept himself aloof always. As a confidant he was sent by Mujib’s government as the military attache’ to India.
Even after that after 15th August, I called him to Dhaka and had requested him to return back from Delhi, as we needed him in the country. In reply he showed no interest. I was little surprised at his negetive attitude!
After the political change you all rushed to us to support the revolution instantly with out waiting for any call. Your contribution at that time was substantial in reorganizing ‘Mukti Joddha Parishad’ and to establish contacts with the patriotic leaders of nationalist and progressive parties and groups for discussing about the future course of politics. Why after being recalled Zia’s confidant CGS has wants to meet me that is what I am thinking about!
I am also not aware of that but would know only after we meet.