The fact that UNESCO has recognised Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s historic March 7 speech as worthy of being one of the most important parts of the world’s documentary heritage is indeed worth celebrating.
But last Saturday’s celebrations, which left the entire city in gridlock, is not the way to do this.
From AL supporters to private universities, various groups came together to celebrate what is undoubtedly a great honour.
And while this is a matter of great pride for all Bangladeshis, when nation suffers, costs the city millions, inconveniencing the people who call this place their home, we do this honour a great disservice.
In fact, this goes against the very idea behind Bangabandhu’s speech, one which prioritises the rights of the people over all else.
This is a problem that has repeated over time. We saw similar celebrations being held last week, inundating our capital with even less traffic flow, resulting in traffic jams which left many people stranded in the midst.
By this time, the ruling party and its followers should know that this is unneeded, and does more harm than good.
To truly honour the memory of the speech, we must first listen to the people. It is through making this city, and this country, a better place that we can begin to live up to all that Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman stood for.
Dhaka currently suffers from a host of problems: Too many people, too much traffic, too much pollution. What good does it do any of us when celebrations such as these serve only to exacerbate these problems?
With Dhaka being one of the worst cities in the world when it comes to traffic congestion, we should know better.
Henceforth, we need to put the people first, and organise the way we celebrate to ensure that celebrations in the future do not cause the people more suffering.