Acknowledging that architect Rabiul Hussain was not only a great poet in Bangladesh, but also a great architect and preacher of the nationalist viewpoint in the world of architecture- speakers at a memorial and recitation meeting here on Monday said he will live forever through the weight of his work and majestic creations.
Bangladesh National Museum, in association with the Ministry of Cultural Affairs organised the programme at the Sufia Kamal Auditorium of the National Museum.
State Minister of Cultural Affairs KM Khalid attended the memorial meeting as the Chief Guest. Bangla Academy Director General Habibullah Siraji, Liberation War Museum’s trustee Mofidul Hoque, Bangladesh’s Consulate Head of Mission and Ambassador in Tashkent Mosud Mannan, Artist Hashem Khan, renowned professor Syed Manzoorul Islam, cultural personality Syed Hasan Imam, Rabiul’s only son Jisan Hussain Robin, younger brother Pilot Captain Tarek Hussain, General Secretary of Sammilita Sangskritik Jote Hasan Arif, poet Tarik Sujat, renowned nuclear scientist and Chairman of Women Affairs Sub-Committee in Awami League Dr Sultana Shafi among others, spoke at the event with country’s renowned folklorist and the National Museum’s Board of Trustee President Professor Shamsuzzaman Khan in the chair.
President of National Poetry Council and DU Pro-Vice Chancellor poet Dr Muhammad Samad, Naila Afroze, Bhaswar Bandyopadhyay, Rupa Chakroborty, Shihab Sarkar, to name a few, recited Rabiul’s own written poetry while poet Aslam Sunny, Lily Haque, Tarik Sujat recited tribute poems to his memories.
The speakers reminisce about their memories with Rabiul Hussain and shed light on his life and influences in Bangladeshi modern literature and architecture.
“We can see how extraordinarily talented he was as an architect while looking at several of our public university properties, at the same time we know how majestic he was as a poet and litterateur. The Ministry of Cultural Affairs will take all the necessary steps as per the instruction of his family, to preserve his creative legacy for generations,” Minister KM Khalid acknowledged the great genius at the event.
“My eldest brother Rabiul was a family man. After the death of our father in our childhood, Miya Bhai (as Rabiul’s siblings used to call him, which he admired throughout his life) raised all of us nine siblings, but never demanded anything in return,” Rabiul’s younger brother Captain Tarek Hussain, a professional pilot, reminisced.
Dr Sultana Shafi said that despite being one of the legendary architects of Bangladesh, Rabiul had been acknowledged as a poet most of the time - and the architect society should protect and preach the legacy of Rabiul, who was a master architect as well.
Remembering his creative brilliance, the event’s chair Dr Shamsuzzaman Khan said that Rabiul was a genius with a generous heart and soul. “Apart from being a poet and litterateur, he was a maestro in architecture and one of the eminent members of our board of trustees. Soon we will bring out publications and memoirs on him (Rabiul) on behalf of the National Museum, which he rightfully deserves,” said the pioneering folklorist.
Besides being a member of the board of trustees both the National Museum and the Liberation War Museum, he was also a lifetime member of Bangla Academy and also served in various capacities at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Museum, children's cultural organisation Kendriyo Kochi Kachar Mela, National Poetry Council, International Film Critic Association of Bangladesh and the Institute of Architects, Bangladesh.
The Ekushey Award winning poet and architect breathed his last at the Critical Coronary Unit (CCU) of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) on 26 November in the capital, at the age of 76.