Humayun Azad Stabbed

Dear Muktomonas,

You must have learnt about the terrible incident. All points leads to Jamat and fundamentalists' hand in it. Here is the full story.  


Dr. Humayun Azad, My Colleague, Stabbed fatally

- Ajoy Roy


Date line 28. 02. 04

Let me begin the story by asking our very competent Khaleda _Nizami government, please tell us, "who is your next target ?". After killing Manik Babu, noted journalist of Bnagladesh, your men assaulted Dr. Kamal Hosain and Mr. Pankaj Bhattacharya, a veteran politician only a few days back, and then you targeted Dr. Humayun Azad. One point bears similarity-- all of them do not believe in your political philosophy, rather they all are liberal, secular, democratic and anti fundamentalism. All are intellectually sound. Are you after the intellectuals now ? Tell us freely and honestly. 

Dr. Azad a close colleague of mine in the university circle is now fighting for his life in the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) after being stabbed grievously by some unknown group of armed terrorists tomorrow night at about 9-30 p.m. just before the Bangla Academy on the other side of the road. Yes, another victim of Khaleda government’s nourished band of fundamentalist gangsters. Dr. Azad is a forceful writer of contemporary Bangladesh with his pen freely moving from lyrical poems to serious material based novels. He has already earned a fame as a non-conventional and controversial writer for which he is very proud off.

What happened really ?

Yesterday was the last day of boi-mela (book fare) in the Bangla Academy premises. I gathered that at around 5-30 p.m. he left his residence at Fuller Road area, very near to the D.U. Campus, and stayed there for more than 3 years. As has been reported by all daily newspapers and the BBC report, he left the Academy at about 9 p.m. And before he left he also talked to channel I reporter that has been telecast in its evening new bulletin. I saw Humayun with his characteristic smiling face a very jubilant person, speaking to reporters, “I am feeling fine, as the people are seen loitering, talking to each other, exchanging greetings, and even few are still buying books.” Azad also spent some time in a bookstall.

After leaving the academy premise he crossed the main road to other side and walking slowly along the road with apparently talking to some one, as he was moving on. When he arrived opposite to the Atomic Energy Commission Building, two or three young men approached him. He was found talking to them, say about 5 minutes, when two of them all on a sudden chopped him from behind – one at the back of his neck (left side), one near the head, two wounds were made on his left faces. He cried out for help, and fell down on the street profusely bleeding. There was small book selling space on the pavement and a food selling shop. The boy selling the books rushed to him and others also rushed to the wounded professor. As the rescuers approaching, the terrorists, numbering probably 4 exploded one or two hand made bombs and made their escape through the Surwardy Uddan in the dark. By the time police arrived and took him to Dhaka Medical College Hospital. This was about 10 p.m. He went through an emergency operation arresting the bleeding. But as his condition was worsening because of bleeding, he was transferred to CMH at about 11 p.m. There he underwent another operation. The doctors said his condition is quite critical, as he has lost considerable amount of blood, which has to be supplemented immediately.

Eye witness to the incident

A woman of middle age and a small daughter and son of her saw the detail of the occurrence. The channel I interviewed them. Both the girl and the boy gave a vivid description, “ we saw a few young men approaching sir, and one was already walking with him talking to sir. The approaching young men all on a sudden fell on him with choppers. They started chopping sir, here and there, especially around his neck. We found sir felling down with cry. Instantly the pavement was full of blood. His shirt was full of blood.” The police later on discovered a chapatti from the Surwardy Uddan ground.

The immediate reason for such violent attack is still unknown, as usual the note says. But his family source said that he has always been a target of the fundamentalists and the communalists because of his anti-fundamentalist stand and government posture. Neither the Madame Zia nor Mr. Nizami, two stalwart of fundamentalism in Bangladesh was happy about the writings of Dr. Azad. The previous Khaleda government proscribed his book entitled “Nari”.

Protests Continuing

All political parties including AL, 11-party alliances, cultural and human rights organizations have condemned the event. All leading political personalities including Sheikh Hasina, Dr Kamal Hosain decried the event as an ample proof of failure of Khaleda_Nizami alliance government in dealing with the terrorists.

Spontaneous processions of DU students and some teachers were brought out at the campus, whereas the action of the government was to deploy huge number combat police force in and around the campus. T

Today (28. 02. 04) the campus was full of protests meetings and protest processions. They demanded immediate arrest of the culprits and restoration of law and order in the country. Professor Arefin Siddiqui, president of Dhaka University Teachers’ Association condemned the event demanding the culprits to bring to justice. Professor Arefin depicted him as the symbol secularism, a symbol of anti-communalism and anti-fundamentalism, and that is why that symbol was chosen to warn all of us who also have faiths in those basic doctrines. Dr. A. K. Azad Chodhury, erstwhile VC, DU also expressed his concern on the attack on a writer professor and a secular minded thinker. Professor Sirajul Islam Choudhury commented that such crime from the fundamentalist is not entirely unexpected, as the government is patronizing them. A student said, “This government should resign immediately, as it failed to protect a respected teacher of the university.” The sammilito Sanskrit jote and Udichi organized a protest assembly at the shahid minar in the afternoon.

Sheikh Hasina intercepted

Our senabahini claims that they are soldiers for the people and of the people, but they care little for people’s representatives MPs, non-government party leaders, or even the leader of the opposition, Sheikh Hasina. Our senabahini knows only to salute the persons in power. The following story illustrates the point.

Today she was driving toward CMH to see the ailing Dr. Humayun Azad. Her car was intercepted and was not allowed to pass. She then walked down about 3 km path towards CMH, and again she was intercepted and she had to come back without seeing Dr. Azad as she was not allowed to go to CMH. What kind of rules and regulations our army has framed that even a minimum courtesy was not shown to even person like Sheikh Hasina, the leader of the opposition. Now let me ask if PM has been in the car, what treatment she would have received, would she have been turned back from the CMH not being allowed to see Dr. Azad.         

Latest Position

The CMH source said today that he has been transferred to ICU following critical operation and his condition would remain critical for not less than 72 hours. He has been taken to Popular diagnostic center, Dhanmondi for CAT scan. Doctors conducting the scanning see the sign of blood clotting, which is a sign of attack on the brain. How serious is it doctors are not sure. But they expressed some concern.  

Where is our interior minister ?

It is good to see that our talkative interior minister still has not opened his mouth. Perhaps he is busy manufacturing a story with intensive consultation with his mentor the PM. His deputy however went to the CMH along with City mayor. Both of whom faced volley of questions from the daughter of Dr. Azad, and obviously those were not very palatable.

Dr. Humayun Azad, as I mentioned is a poet, novelist, essayist of no mean caliber. But I admire him for his scholarships. He is probably the best linguist and philologist in our country today. I have been immensely benefited from reading his excellent works like Pronominalization in Bengali, Tulanamulak and Oitihasik Bhasabijnan (The comparative and historical Science of Language, Bakyatatwa. In here true talents of Humayun are fully exposed. He was known for his controversial approach and one is not happy to converse with his unless the talker has the minimum level. Humayun make no secret despising a person having poor background of knowledge. I am not always in tune with his wavelength on many issues, but surely I had seldom difference in opinion in fighting against fundamentalism and obscurantism. He is not only a good teacher, but also a man of open and liberal mind with freethinking. A liberal mind cannot be a communal, and here he has invited enmity from the Jamatis, BNPs and other fundamentalists because of his writings against fundamentalism and against oppression against women.His Nari and Dwtiya Linga created some comotion in the conservative circles.

Police Action

While the ministry of internal affairs keeping mum, the police is also keeping mum. So far they have recovered two heavy choppers (one was however found by a group of students when they went to the place to place flower wreaths today, which was handed over to the VC, DU from whom police collected it later) from the place of occurrence. The police have arrested one Abbas Ali, said to be a student of political science from near the central Shahid Minar, but police is not sure if he is really involved. .   


Let us join together to pray for speedy recovery of Dr. Humayun Azad. We need him desperately, yes more than we need Begum Khaleda, our great lady of maidan. Yes, if we lose Dr. Azad (God forbid), surely a void would be created in our intellectual field and it would be difficult to fulfill. But for any reason the pm steps down or voluntarily quits the job, I am sure no void would felt in our national life. The country will loose nothing. There would be no void even in the political field. Her son will immediately step in.

Who is the next target of the golden boys Begum Khaleda of whom she is so proud off. Remember our readers, our Prime minister, once uttered a stern warning against Sheikh Hasina and her party AL that to tame them, BNP is not needed, BNP Cadres belonging to students- and youths-front are quite competent to eliminate AL and its leaders. Madam PM, No amount of shading crocodile tears on the part of the PM, by pronouncing whatever needed for treatment of Dr. Azad would be done, would help the BNP nor help us. Better, the PM should control her unruly boys, and free each section of the administration from political interference from the lowest to the highest. We will feel relieved, but the threatening and thundering warnings radiating from the voice of the PM from maidan meetings really frighten us. Amin!         


28. 02. 04


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