On his way to New York my meeting with Gen. Ershad in London
A few days later after taking over power Gen Ershad en rout to attend the UN general assembly session desired to meet me at London during Lay over. The High Commissioner was instructed to make all arrangement. He decided that I shall have to go to Hillton to meet Gen. Ershad over brake fast at his suite on the following day of his arrival. Because, after the brakefast meeting he would be taking his flight for New York. On the scheduled day at night President arrived London. Next day morning the High Commissionar sent a car. I reached to his suite. As I entered I found Gen. Ershad was deeply engrossed in Wajifa sitting on the praying rug with a Tasbih in hand attiring Payjama and Kurta! In front there was a Holy Quran. With the noise of the door opening he looked up and seeing me at the door came forward with Tasbhi in hand and welcomed me emrassing warmly. He told his ADC to inform the room service to serve the break fast in the room while we would be talking and sat down on the side sofas along with me.
Whatever you had said during China visit that became true by the most compassionate Allah! After the abortive coup of Manjur resposibily to run the country has fallen upon me.
Sir, not befallen rather, you should have said you had to take over.
You might be right. But fot for the lust of power but there was no other alternative in view of the evolving over all situation in the country then. Any way, how you all are doing?
By the grace of Allah we are still alive.
Zia was pushing the country not only towards complete disaster but had done great injustice to you all. I shall be redressing that on my return In Sha Allah. I shall re-instead you all back in service with all retrospective benefits that is due for last two years.
Sir, did you call me for conveying this at this early morning to have break fast?
Not really, to re-instead you all is my moral responsibility, I did not called you for intimating that. The way you had helped me in the past in that back drop I shall expect that similarly all of you would be helping to carry forward my politics in future with your experiences. The main reason for calling you is to convey this expectation of mine.
Sir, we are above all kinds of personal expectations and gains. We have dedicated ourselves for the greater interests of the country and the nation as we had decided to join the liberation war. Where ever we might be in whatever condition we have only one motivation to live. To materialize the dream of the majority of the people based on the spirit of ’71. Being a Bengali like Zia you also do not know the land and the the people. Therefore, it can be easily said that you have no other option but follow the foot prints of Zia. But You have one plus point. Knowingly or unknowingly the ‘Divide and Rule’ policy which Gen. Zia had been persuing within the armed forces, you would not be required to follow that policy. With the opportunity that had presented itself with Manjur’s misadventure has resolved the contradiction between the freedom fighters and the repatriates. Most of the members of the armed forces who believed in the politics of ideals and ideology had been up rooted by late Gen. Zia. So, it would not be difficult for you to reform the armed forces like any other professional army within a very short period of time. A deceiplined obedient armed forces would be solace to you. In this regard we have nothing to do. It would also not be congenial for any side to do politics together. However, at any crucial juncture for the greater interest of the country and people if there is any opportunity to do anything then we shall surely consider that and in the process if any individual including yourself is benifited that wouldn’t matter much to us as we would not be asking anything in return even from.
Now, I shall say a few things about your virtues and vices as you have snatched away power on gun point from an elected President. In this back drop you have to be carefull about your character. If you can get rid of the weakness of your character that might subdue that stigma to some extent. It would have been easy to maintain relation with you. Besides, as the President your character would be always compared with that of Gen. Zia. Now a few words about poitics Sir.
Never tie yourself with the traders in religion for any gain. These are not only enimies of Islam but also of the country and the nation. Authentic values of Islam and the true nationalist spirit should be the inspiration and guiding force of your politics. Neighbor India would remain as a threath to Bangladesh’s independence, sovereignty, stability, progress and economic viability. On the way to build a self reliant country India would be the biggest impediment. As long as artificially created ‘Indian Union’ does not disintrigate till that time, India would not like the independent smaller countries of this region moves ahead towards prosperity based on self reliance. The reason being that would expedite the process of disintrigation of ‘Indian Union’. This would also prove that if different nations within India can achieve independence through their on going liberation wars then they would also be able to establish themselves as self reliant progressive and prosperous nation states. Meanwhile, you had already conferred to the Chinese leaders that to counter the expantionist threat of India, basis of our foreign policy should have to be China centric. Is in’t Sir? From what I had said Gen. Ershad had realized that I am aware of what he had discussed with the Chinese leaders in the secret meeting. I think you would be able to enjoy power with the support of Awami League for one term. There after, you would be made to sit under Hasina’s petticoat and India would bring Hasina to power. Before that, it would be wise for you to take the decision to retire from active politics if possible. I don’t think it would be correct to serve the interest of India as a national traitor sitting under her petticoat. Some day, you would also be rubbed on the streak plate of history to dig out the truth. This is how our breakfast meeting ended. On his return Gen. Ershad re-insteated all of us as promised and again we had joined as diplomats in different Bangladesh Missions abroad.