Dhaka, Mar 14 (UNB) – The 34th death anniversary of eminent jurist, parliamentarian, educationist and philanthropist Dr Aleem Al-Razee was observed with due solemnity in the country on Friday.
Razee, who died on March 15, 1985, was at the forefront of all political struggles and socio-cultural movements unleashed in the country to win democracy, human rights and freedom of expression of the people.
Different voluntary, socio-cultural organisations and educational institutions observed the day with elaborate programmes.
Dr. Aleem-Al-Razee Memorial Council members laid floral wreaths and offered 'fateha' at Razee's graveyard in Banani and held milad mahfil in Razee's remembrance in his native village.
Separate doa mahfils were also held at Nagarpur Government College in Nagarpur and Dr. Aleem Al-Razee High School in Lawhati of Tangail on the occasion.
Discussion meetings on the life and works of Razee were organised, among others, by the Shandhani National Eye Donation Society (SNEDS), City Law College in the capital.
At the discussion arranged by Dr. Aleem Al-Razee High School, chairman of the school management committee Lion Shiblee, also former student of the school and general secretary of Delduar upazila Awami League, and school managing committee member Biplab Hossain Khan shed light on the life and works of Dr. Aleem Al-Razee. The headmaster of the school presided over the programme.
Razee was at the forefront of all political struggles and socio-cultural movements unleashed in the country to establish democracy, human rights and freedom of expression of people.
Dr. Razee, an independent member of the then Pakistan National Assembly during 1965 to 1969, played a sheet anchor role not only in defending freedom and democracy but also in pleading the cause of the then East Pakistani Bengalees who were subjected to unjust domination, discrimination and deprivation by the ruling elites of the then West Pakistan in all walks of life, said a press release.
That was the trajectory despite the fact that East Pakistan was the major contributor to Pakistan’s economy in terms of export earnings and the Bengalees formed the majority population. His forceful portrayal of the growing disparity between the Bengalees and non-Bengalees and prediction in 1965 that Pakistan could disintegrate along the East and West divide fuelled demands for an independent Bangladesh that eventually kindled the spark of Liberation War culminating in the emergence of a new nation state of Bangladesh.
Razee was a leading honorary defence counsel in the historic Agartala Case in 1967 in which Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and others were charged with treason against the state of Pakistan. In the face of intimidation and life threats, he defended the accused in a landmark trial that lasted till 1969, the release said.
Razee was also a prolific writer who authored several books. His well documented and carefully researched monumental work. “The Constitutional Glimpses of Martial Law in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh” published posthumously by the University Press Ltd. Dhaka was hailed as a ‘charter of freedom for the fledging and fragile democracies in the region.
One of his works of fiction in Bengali ‘On Trekking through to Arakan’ was set in the backdrop of the Second World War that left a trail of humanitarian disaster in Burma (now Myanmar).
A best seller, the book is a heart rending tale of woes and sufferings that continues to move the readers to this day This story is a veiled foreboding of darker things to come in a most savage and barbaric form as if to square the circle in the same land that has been condemned worldwide as ethnic cleansing and genocide.
The perpetrators of these heinous crimes, Myanmar army and Buddhist monks, are forcing the minority Muslim settlers Rohingyas to flee across the border to neighbouring Bangladesh in a string of perilous journeys in hundreds of thousands for their life seeking shelter in makeshift camps in Cox’s Bazar.