Every year, the month of December brings out the patriotic spirit among the people of Bangladesh. The green-red flag shows up on the bonnet of cars, hangs from balconies and stands on the handlebars of rickshaws. Companies see this as an opportunity to promote their product by appealing to the patriotic spirit . In most cases, however, the end result is a cheesy and frankly embarrassing att at showcasing the war that gave us Bangladesh. Banglalink, one of the country’s leading cellular service providers, was a delightful exception. “Bhalo Thakuk Bangladesh” was Banglalink’s campaign to mark the month of independence and they delivered.
Banglalink introduced the campaign through three teasers that visualized the dreadful nights on which the Pakistan Army engaged in the systematic execution of Bengali pro-liberation intellectuals during the Bangladesh Liberation War. Through the teasers, Banglalink showed how people were dragged from their homes, in front of their families, and killed afterward. The unflinching intellectuals can be seen smiling and accepting their death with open arms. The brilliant message behind the teasers was that our martyrs welcomed death with a smile because they knew the country they gave their lives for was in safe and responsible hands.
The teasers were followed by three tear-jerking videos of the children of three martyrs who had been mercilessly killed by the Pakistan Army. Asif Munier, the son of multi-talented educationist Munier Choudhury, spoke proudly about his father’s talents as a writer, teacher, and social activist. Meghna Guhathakurta, daughter of martyr Jyotirmoy Guhathakurta, also an educator spoke about how the Liberation war stood as an inspiration in her life. Martyr Dr. AFM Abdul Alim Chowdhury was an eye specialist who was abducted from his Paltan home on December 15, 1971, and his dead body was found three days later. His daughter, Dr. Nuzhat Chowdhury described the horrors of that night at the Bangabandhu International Conference Center on December 14, 2016, and said her father died with a smile because he believed this country was in responsible hands.
Banglalink deserves credit for respecting the occasion of December 14 through their campaign. Banglalink is highly popular among the young mass and they rightfully used their platform to reach out to the younger generations and put out raw, unfiltered stories about the sacrifices that people of this country have made. As a part of the campaign, they encourage everyone to share their thoughts about the country through a video and inspire the patriotic within us. It was a wonderful effort by a prominent brand that went beyond its business objectives to show respect to our martyrs and their families.
Imagine yourself being woken up by the sound of gunfire. Boots in the hallway, women, and children crying. Blood on the streets. Sends a shiver down the spine, does it not?
Our problems with this country are confined to endless traffic, high commodity prices and overpopulation. Hey, at least we have a country we can call our own. this country of rivers near the Bay of Bengal has had to fight for every grain of grass. We have had to fight for the language we speak today and our turf. Bangladesh is a land of miracles. We first shocked the world by taking a bullet for our mother tongue. Two decades later we stood up to a formidable and efficient army with no trained arm forces or weapons. The relentless sacrifices and fearlessness of the common Bangladeshi gave birth to the land of miracles. We overcame one of the worst famines ever, drastically fought off thiseases and are on our way to become a middle-income country. We made Mr. Henry Kissinger eat his words. Bangladesh is not a bottomless basket. If anything, it is a basket with unlimited potential. Banglalink’s campaign is a small att at educating the young population of Bangladesh about the sacrifices that thirty million people made to earn the right to walk freely on this land. Let us not complain anymore about the mess Bangladesh is at times. Let us stand up and take ownership. Let us be inspired by our martyrs and build a nation they are proud of.
Let us work hard so that “Bhalo Thakuk Bangladesh”.