BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam recently called Begum Khaleda Zia a woman freedom fighter. Earlier, he also termed Tareq Rahman as a child freedom fighter. The issue of introducing Begum Khaleda Zia and Tareq Rahman as freedom fighters has given rise to new discussions on the issue of fake freedom fighters. The question is, is this statement merely a political rhetoric or a motive behind it? Begum Khaleda Zia while in hospital; When people are worried about their health condition, in such a situation such a sudden issue is raised for any purpose, it has also appeared in the form of questions in various quarters.
If these two were really freedom fighters, then perhaps the discussion would not have been born. Or if a lesser-known grassroots leader had said such a thing, it might not have been so much talked about. The issue of women freedom fighters is the first.
Everyone knows that after four decades of liberation war, on October 10, 2014, the National Freedom Fighters Council decided to recognize Biranganas as freedom fighters. The resolution was passed in the parliament on January 29 of the following year. Since then, step by step, heroines are being recognized as women freedom fighters. Since this is an ongoing process, they could have suggested Khaleda Zia’s name. The matter has been published in the media without informing the application as per the rules.
Earlier, Mirza Saheb had said that Khaleda Zia was a prisoner of the Pakistani army. If this were true then maybe it would have made sense to give him the status of a freedom fighter. Was he in reality? Let’s see what history says.
The reality is that Major Ziaur Rahman went to India from Chittagong to take part in the war of liberation. Begum Khaleda Zia was in Chittagong at that time. According to Captain Shahabuddin Ahmed Biruttam, he was staying at the house of Captain Harunur Rashid. When Ziaur Rahman left Chittagong for India, Begum Khaleda Zia left Chittagong for Dhaka. Negotiations demand that when people were leaving the city to save their lives, then Dhaka was a place of death. For some reason, Khaleda Zia left for the place of death. Although the family of Major Khaled Musharraf and Major Nurul Islam Shishu could move to India in May, why did he move to Dhaka instead of going to Major Zia in India.
Several senior BNP leaders, including Mirza Fakhrul Islam, said Begum Khaleda Zia was being held captive by the Pakistani army. Was he the first cantonment to come to Dhaka from Chittagong? Or was he taken away? This question was also answered by Captain Shahabuddin Ahmed Biruttam.
Captain Shahabuddin Ahmed came to Dhaka in the first week of June 1971 to take Begum Uttam Begum Khaleda Zia to India. Earlier, Major Ziaur Rahman had requested Captain Shahab to take Begum Khaleda Zia to India. Accordingly Captain Sahab, an architect of BUET Sunny came to Dhaka. Major Ziaur Rahman also sent a Lance Naik as a guide to assist them. He also gave the addresses of the places where Khaleda Zia can stay. After visiting a few places, Captain Shahabuddin Ahmed went to a house at Gulshan 1. You can know from Daroyan that Begum Khaleda Zia had left that house for Dhaka Cantonment the day before. No information was found that any soldiers were on guard at the house earlier. That means he was not a prisoner there.
It is also known that he was not a prisoner and threatened to hand over the freedom fighters. Perhaps in August or September, Ziaur Rahman requested Captain Abdul Gaffar to take Begum Khaleda Zia to India. Then Mr. Gaffar told Zia that 6 out of 6 freedom fighters lost their lives in the second phase of bringing Begum Khaleda Zia to India. Will it be ok to send again?
Even then, at the request of Ziaur Rahman, Mr. Gaffar sent a group of freedom fighters to Dhaka. The group got the news and went to meet Khaleda Zia at Hotel Inter Continental. They told Begum Khaleda Zia that they had come to take her to India as per the instructions of Major Ziaur Rahman. Begum Khaleda Zia clearly threatened them. He said if the freedom fighters did not leave the place at this time, he would call the army. This last group quickly left the Intercontinental Hotel thinking about the 6 martyrs who came in the previous phase.
This information proves that Begum Khaleda Zia was not a prisoner in the hands of Pakistanis in 1971 – she was free. And was stationed in the cantonment in collaboration with Pakistani forces. Not only that, 6 freedom fighters who came to Dhaka to take him died but he remained in Dhaka without responding to the call of Ziaur Rahman.
So where is the rationale to call her a woman freedom fighter as a tortured woman. Captain Shahabuddin Ahmed Biruttam, who came to take Khaleda Zia to India, is still alive. He has published the above information on a television channel. His statement is also recorded by this registrar.
Many have also publicized the sending of condolences by the then Prime Minister on the death of a Pakistani army officer. That issue was not raised or taxed.
Mirza Fakhrul Islam did not just talk about making Begum Khaleda Zia a freedom fighter. Tareq Rahman has also been described as a child freedom fighter. Maybe according to his statement Begum Khaleda Zia was a prisoner and Tareq Rahman was also with her. In this argument he has called Tareq Rahman as a child freedom fighter. According to Mirza Fakhrul Islam, if Tareq Rahman is a freedom fighter, then Koko who is with his mother should also be a freedom fighter. But he did not call Koko a freedom fighter. According to Mirza Fakhrul Islam, if Tareq Rahman is a child freedom fighter, then the definition of an ongoing freedom fighter needs to be changed. Did Mirza Fakhrul Islam take that initiative while he was in power? Or do they still demand to change the definition?
This statement is seen by many as an attempt to make the Liberation War controversial, just as Begum Khaleda Zia’s birthday was celebrated on August 15 in an attempt to ridicule the Father of the Nation. The BNP claims that the freedom fighters are the BNP. If so, it is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post.
In recent years, after widespread criticism, a huge cake has not been cut on the occasion of Begum Khaleda Zia’s birthday on August 15. With the latest announcement that fake birthday celebration has been stopped. Will they cancel the declaration of women freedom fighters in the same way? Let’s see which way the BNP goes.