It has been almost three months, on 27 August 2016; Haq Bhai left all of us, all on a sudden. It seemed so unrealistic of the way he left us, but also for a man who dedicated all his life in the service of others, shunned to be even served by his closest ones at the time of his passing away. He did not put anyone in any hardship that he always endured himself for others’ sake. This was our Haq Bhai, a person who kept on serving without ever expecting to be served in return. A man who did not run after name and fame for the work he undertook, but indeed Allah in all His glory, awarded him the acknowledgement that he so deserved. For the first time ever, a first generation Bangladeshi migrant to Australia has been acknowledged for his services to his adapted country, by so many quarters, so profusely. He has given us all a reason to proudly proclaim ourselves as Bangladeshis among the culturally diverse multicultural nation of Australians.
I feel fortunate that I could become an acquaintance of Haq Bhai, though not for as long as I would have loved to. Most of his acquaintances have known him for longer times. Most know him for his dedicated service and commitment to so many causes. Since Haq Bhai left us, I have sat most evenings trying to write about him. I plundered over the thought that what could I write that others do not know about him or has not been written as yet? I really could not find any. He was an open book to all. Called or met everyone personally whenever it required. He bore absolutely no ego. How could someone like him bear any ego? A devoted believer, an ardent practitioner of faith, one who helped build mosques, Muslim graveyard, orphanages, madrashas, stood up for the needy and so many more. Indeed, he must have had taken to heart the Hadit of our prophet: "One does not enter Jannah who has in his heart a mustard seed's weight of Kibr (ego)" & "Kibr (ego) is rejecting the truth and belittling people."
As I have mentioned earlier, we can proudly proclaim ourselves as Bangladeshi because of Haq Bhai’s contribution. What about our next generation? Could they also claim Dr. Haq to be as theirs’ as we proudly claim him to be ours’? I suppose not, because there is not much written about him in a language that they would understand. How and where would they find out about our contributions for their home land, that their ancestors chose to adapt for them? All of the writings so far are only in Bangla. That’s fine with us. But don’t we owe it to them to document those in a language that we have imposed upon them, by uprooting them from their ancestral land, for which they had no say. I felt it would be our historic obligation to write about those persons, in English, so that our decedents are also able to claim the pride as we do now. In my humble way, I have decided to write this piece in English about Haq Bhai so that our decedents can also claim him to be theirs’.
Though I have met and known Dr. Abdul Haq for some time due to my frequent visits to Australia, I really became an associate of him only in the last few years. He invited me to work with him in a project that he had been after for a long time; a residential enclave for the retiring & senior Bangladeshis. Since I do not have any working knowledge of how to go about materializing such an undertaking, I relied completely on the dedication and experience of Haq Bhai for this. Almost every other week Haq Bhai, Bhabi, I and my wife would go around looking for suitable site. In fact the last block of property that we inspected was on the Wednesday prior to the Saturday morning he passed away. The intended project has not made any headway since then. I am hoping that those who are familiar with similar undertakings would come forward to join hands to take it forward.
In course of this association, Haq Bhai and Bhabi would visit us almost once a week. I believe he liked our company and I took the favor of him to sometime say that he need not jump up on his feet and get into action every time somebody or someone approaches for some kind of help or other. I told him that because of this, he is misunderstood by some who often talk behind his back. He would smile and say that he is aware of all that. He believed that those who talk behind the back never come forward to do the work themselves. As such he decided to ignore those and continue to do the work that he considered to be the right thing to do. It was interesting to note that he never held any malice against any of them. In fact he considered most of them to be very capable of achieving good things for the community, only if they made some efforts. He firmly believed that when one has the honest intention or the "Niyat", Allah lends a hand to make it happen.
A few weeks prior to his passing away I called him one evening to tell him that I wished to write a nomination for him for a candidature for the "Australian of the Year", for I thought who could be a better candidate than him among the Bangladeshis in Australia. He modestly declined my offer saying he wasn’t there for the limelight. On the retrospective, when I come to think of it, If Haq Bhai ever sought any nomination for the Australian of the year, among others, the Blacktown Council, Cancer Council, number of federal and state MPs would have been too happy to nominate him.
At his Namaz-e-Zanja at the Quaker Hills mosque, the Mayor of Blacktown City Council, Councilor Stephen Bali sent a personal emissary to read a very emotional message of condolence. Hon Ed Husic, Member Federal Parliament informed the House of the sad demise of Dr. Abdul Haq and spoke about his contribution towards the Australian society. Federal MPs Hon Tony Burke, Hon Matt Thistlethwaite, Hon Michelle Rowland and State MPs Hon Zihad Dibb and Hon Sophie Cotsis, Chairman NSW Cancer Council, Chairman Rotary Australia, President Dhaka Ahsania Mission and many more sent personal messages of condolence acknowledging the contribution of Dr. Haq. HE Imtiaz Chowdhury, The High Commissioner for Bangladesh in Australia sent a message in honor of Dr. Haq on his remembrance day. Mr. Anthony Khouri, Honorary Consul General of Bangladesh, Hon Matt Thistlethwaite, Hon Sophie Cotsis, Mr. Jack Elliot, AOM, Ex.Treasurer of RotaryWorld Community Service and many more spoke on the occasion of Remembrance Day honoring Dr. Haq. Dr. Haq was featured in the cover page of 2010/2011 Annual report of the NSW Cancer Council. His photograph had been on display at the hall of fame of the Cancer Council, Sydney.
Dr.Abdul Haq was born in 1949 in a respectable Muslim family of Manik Gonj. His father, Md. Abdul Hamid retired as the Senior Personnel Officer, Bangladesh Railway, Chittagong. Dr. Haq is the second of the nine brothers and sisters. The eldest, Shaheed Md. Abdul Halim was killed by the Pakistani army during the war of liberation. There is a street named after him in Chittagong; Abdul Halim Sharak. One of the younger brothers, Md. Abdul Hakim is a Justice of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh. Two other brothers; Md. Abdul Hannan and Md. Abdul Jahangir are business men in Chittagong. The youngest, Md. Khurshid Alamgir lives in Sydney and works for the Sydney Waters. He also owns Sydney’s first Halal Thai restaurant; Thai Waterfront, Bella Vista. When Haq Bhai was diagnosed with terminal kidney ailment, Alamgir donated a kidney to his brother at the age of 17 in 1984. One can only wish to have such brothers, one for the other, in life and hereafter!
Dr. Haq completed his schooling in Chittagong and obtained the degree of Bsc Engineering from the Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology (BUET) in 1971. He did his Masters and PhD at the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), Bangkok. Thereafter, he took up a teaching position at the King Abdul Aziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia in 1981. The Haq family moved to Australia in 1991.
Haq Bhai & Laila Bhabi was married in 1973. They are blessed with a daughter and a son. Rubaiyat Shahreen Haq (Shathi), mother of two, is a Telecommunication Engineer and works for the Optus. Ashfaqul Haq (Rana) is a professional accountant and has his own accounting practice. Rana’s wife Farhana Meem is a devoted wife, mother of three kids and a great daughter-in-law. The son-in-law Tanveer Shaheed is a Regional Director at the Macquarie University. It is great to see that Tanveer has taken upon himself to carry on with the mantle of the Good Morning Bangladesh. Rana, Haq Bhai’s son led the Zanaja prayer of his father. I do not know of many father and son who could claim to be so fortunate and blessed.
Bhabi has her handful with five grand children in and around the house. Those who know Laila Bhabi know very well that her hands are always full, be it at the Good Morning Bangladesh or any other social welfare event. She had been a rock solid support for Haq Bhai all along. Without her, one may be forgiven to doubt, if Haq Bhai could have achieved all that he had done. She had been his constant companion, a soul mate, a comrade in arms in whatever Haq Bhai did. Haqs have been very fortunate to have the complete support of their entire family in all of their endeavors. It is our earnest hope and prayer that the family will endeavor to continue with the activities left behind by Haq Bhai by Allah's permission and with the community's support.
Soon after Dr. Haq arrived in Australia he realized the importance of engaging with the local community. Towards this goal he participated in various activities of the Blacktown City Council. And it facilitated the linkage between the Bangladeshi communities with the various arms of the local governments. His activities slowly moved into other parts of Sydney too. Among other activities, he organized a concert at the McArthur Girls School to raise funds for the Westmead Children Hospital. He even organized a concert of Kumar Bishayjit in a church at Blacktown to raise money for such other causes.
From early on Dr. Haq felt the need for his community’s need to assimilate with the main stream Australia in order to be an active and accepted partner of this multicultural society. He thought this was essential for our future generation to be able to claim their rightful stake in the affairs of their adapted country. From year 2000 to 2008, Dr. Haq & his able wife Laila Haq took upon themselves as their family endeavor to institute the Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea to raise money for the NSW Cancer Council. Since 2009 the event is being held under the auspices of Bangladesh Forum for Community Engagement as Good Morning Bangladesh. Good Morning Bangladesh is now a well known annual community event for all walks of life. Local Councilors, State and Federal MPs and others participate in this event on regular basis. Number of state and federal MPs spoke highly of this event and of Dr. Haq on the floors of the Parliament. The 2011 Good Morning Bangladesh at the Martins Place was one of its high point where Australia’s acclaimed Master Chefs participated along with other dignitaries. The event was aired throughout Australia by the major TV channels.
In addition to Blacktown where it all started, Good Morning Bangladesh is now also held annually at Glenfield, Lakemba and Mascot. These events up until 2016 has raised and donated $153,701 to the NSW Cancer Council.
Since 1994 the Haq family has been holding an event called "Talent Day", another of Haq bahi’s dream to see our future generation excel in this country. Once a year, SSC & HSC completed students are honored for their achievements. What could be a befitting dream for the one, who had been an educator himself all his life?
Haq Bhai and others moved from door to door to raise money to establish a mosque in the western Sydney. Laila Bhabi and others cooked meals in their kitchens to organize events to raise funds. With the Blessings of Allah, Quakers Hill Mosque is probably the only one that could be completely procured debt free! Haq Bhai worked tirelessly until his last day towards his dream for the Quakers Hill mosque. He dreamt of this mosque as a multipurpose centre of excellence for his community. He dreamt of a library, community centre, a place for learning and training, community engagements and etc to be integral parts of this mosque. I believe, Allah permitting, he would have achieved it.
He worked tirelessly with others to establish the Riverstone Muslim Graveyard. He regularly engaged himself in the maintenance and cleaning of the graveyard. Since this graveyard was filling up fast, he embarked on a mission to seek permission for new graveyards for the Muslims, another unfinished goal of his.
Dr. Haq undertook a commitment of raising $250,000 for the Ahsania Mission Cancer Hospital, Dhaka under the banner of the Bangladesh Forum for Community Engagement. The Forum was able to raise $120,000 in a spate of only few years.
The annual Friendship Day was yet another of his efforts to build cohesion and camaraderie between the members of his community across all age groups.
In addition Haq Bhai & Bhabi had been involved in numerous other charitable activities in Bangladesh.
I would like to conclude here, with hopes and prayers that as the future Bangladeshi-Australians replace us soon, they are able to declare with pride that their forbearers had a role in building their country too. I pray that they are inspired to follow on with the legacy of their predecessors and stand up for each other at all times. Let us resolve to remember Dr. Haq in his deeds. Let us engage and mobilize ourselves as he attempted to do to bring a positive impact to the community. May he live forever with us and may his soul rest in peace.
*Photographs and family details courtesy of Mrs. Haq. Most other information collected from other write-ups with thanks to the authors. Any omission or inaccurate information I attribute to my own limitations.
Mostafa Abdullah, Sydney
Published on: 24-Nov-2016 Dr Tanveer Ahmed has released his new book, "Fragile Nation", about mental health and ethnic communities. It will interest Bangladeshi readers. Please request a copy at your local bookshop or order online. It is endorsed by Bob Carr, Bettina Arndt and bestselling crime author Gabrielle Lord.
Published on: 22-Nov-2016
AUSTRALIA BANGLADESH SPORTS & CULTURAL ASSOCIATION INC.
Media Report: The general meeting of the ABSCA Inc. was held on 19 June 2016 at Haji Biriyani, 158 Haldon Road, Lakemba. The meeting was attended by 12 team Captains, Vice Captains and Managers. 4 teams has sent their apologies but confirmed their participation in forthcoming cricket season competition.
It was for the first time in community cricket that teams were invited to express their opinion while ABSCA Board members noted their wish list. The team expressed their confidence that the current team of ABSCA members are the right persons to run the community cricket and they are the most capable persons to arrange this prestigious tournament.
The President Nasim Samad introduced the Board members, MJ Alam, Monirul Mitul, Masud Khan, Shamim Mostafa, Shoaib Rony and Masrur Ahsan Siam to all the teams present. The teams present introduced themselves. The meeting was informed that ABSCA Board has decided to invite Mr Morris Iemma, former PM of NSW, Deputy Chair of St George District Cricket Association and currently the Commissioner of Greater Sydney Development Authority to be the Honorary Chairman of the Board. Cricket NSW and Sydney Thunder will be invited to join ABSCA Board as observers. The Board also approved the appointment of Harry Solomon as MD of Kingsgrove Sports to the Advisory Board. There will be more appointment in coming days of prominent businessman, reputed journalist, professionals and high profile identity of Sydney.
The President informed the meeting of the appointment of UBS Accounting as the Accountant of ABSCA and Batallion Solicitors for all legal matters.
Attending teams’ wish list included better fields, umpires, prize money and standalone trophy. The GS Mitul informed that the Champion team will get $3000, Runners Up $2000 and third position $1000. Man of the Match (MOM) in final will be awarded $500. Best Batsman - $500 + Kit Bag, Best Bowler - $500 + Kit Bag, MOM Knock-Out level- $250, MOM Group level - Medal
Treasurer Masud informed that a poll will be arranged to name the tournament. Teams will need to send the EOI (expression of interest) of participation by 2nd week of July 2016. The Treasurer informed the fee will not be more than the current rate.
ABSCA will arrange to celebrate Victory Day 2016 in a befitting manner which will be a first such memorable event for the Bangladeshi community. Mr Babul Chowdhury, Chairman of Advisory Committee of ABSCA will plan and manage the event and the Board will provide all logistic support for the event.
The forward planner includes a grand dinner to be arranged to launch the cricket season, ABSCA will arrange a musical concert with local and overseas artist, arrange net practices at coaching centre with coaches from SCG. Dates will be advised soon.
Teams present highly praised and thanked the Board for first time in community cricket they were given a chance to speak their mind and was happy to cooperate with ABSCA to launch a successful cricket season.
Masrur Ahsan Siam, Executive Board member led the munajat prior breaking of fast. Siam sought the blessing of Almighty Allah and pleaded for his forgiveness for all during the holy month of Ramadan. The meeting ended with a nicely arranged big Iftar, Magrib prayer and sumptuous dinner.
Sd/- Nasim Samad President ABSCA Inc. Mob: 0433 79 59 68
Published on: 30-Jun-2016
BRAND NEW DHANMONDI APARTMENT FOR SALE Located near Dhanmondi lake north west facing 6th floor 2200 sq. feet approx. 3 Beds 2 car space lift servants generator security community hall etc. Will suit non resident Bangladeshis living in USA UK Australia New Zealand South East Asia & the Middle East. Full payment will have to be made in Australia. Please contact E: email@example.com M: 0425 335 064
Published on: 30-Jun-2016
Open Letter to the High Commissioner
10 June 2016
His Excellency Kazi Imtiaz Hossain The High Commissioner to Australia for the People’s Republic of Bangladesh
Re: Community Consultation in Sydney on the 1st of June 2016
Dear High Commissioner,
I’d like to join Mr Anisur Rahman from bangla-sydney.com and others in thanking you for the first-time ever community consultation organised by the HC. You might not be remembering me individually but I was present at the meeting and very briefly I proposed for considering a visit to Sydney by the Hon Prime Minister of Bangladesh. In fact, I feel that now that Sydney hosts the largest gathering of the Bangladeshi people in any community event outside Bangladesh and one such gathering is reaching its 25th year in the coming Boisakh, it’d be a genuine expectation that the Prime Minister spends a bit of time with us here in Sydney at that time.
At the meeting I was rather keen to learn the very purpose of the gathering and the facts and figures that you shared with us. I must say, it was quite informative and most importantly, your frank, open and assertive disposition touched my heart. Thanks once again and you deserve personal congratulations.
I commend most of the proposals and suggestions made by distinguished community leaders present at the meeting. Also, I did not want to take-up a lengthy time in raising some items that I’d in my mind. I thought that’d deprive others from sharing their views. I don’t want to repeat those important points here. Instead, I take this opportunity to write this open letter to you. Hope this is ok with you.
Being so closely involved with the Bangladeshi community and also looking at other communities from our neighbouring nations from the sub-continent for the past 20+ years, I feel that time has come for us to consider a few things a bit more seriously; perhaps more strategically. I’ve pointed these out below in no particular order of importance. Some of these items may be already in the minds of the HC but I am not aware of any definitive developments.
I beg your pardon for writing this letter in English. I’m especially keeping in mind Gen-Y and people from non-Bangla background political and alike, who have been already closely associated with or would be interested to get involved with our community here in Australia. I’d be happy to elaborate these points at length and/or discuss at the right forum, should this be needed.
1. Federation of Registered Associations of Bangladesh background By now there are in excess of 100 registered Incorporated Associations and groups that operate in Australia. Most of whom are naturally in Sydney and Melbourne. Apart from quite a large proportion of these groups engaged primarily in religious or political activities, many have been involved in true socio-cultural and humanitarian services. Whilst I admit that an initiative of a ‘Federation’ or similar has to be taken by the Bangladeshi community itself, nevertheless, the HC can act as a catalyst and encourage making a one-voice that officially and democratically represents the Bangladeshi Community is Australia. This initiative is far too overdue. Most other communities do have this type of body and it acts as a Spokes Agency for that community; at the same time maintains the much needed identity distinction between the community and the HC.
2. Bangladesh House for the community For a 50-plus thousands of Bangladeshi people living in Australia, a permanent address other than the HC in Canberra, is a logical demand of the time. Again, such an initiative must come from the community but the HC can do its part in inspiring the community as well as seeking avenues of funding potentials for such an address. Though the Boisakhi Mela at the Sydney Olympic Park serves as a ‘destination’ and the International Mother Language Day Monument at Ashfield Park (Shahid Minar) serves as a ‘political address’, don’t we need a ‘home address’ of our own? The community, with assistance from the Australian governments, should be able to fund this.
3. National Monument in Canberra Sydney has the Shahid Minar at Ashfield Park, which represents all linguistic people in the world, however, most certainly signifying the sacrifices made for Bangla. Canberra can have a National Monument built instead of building another Shahid Minar. I believe it could be inside the HC’s territory and let all Bangladeshis make contributions to build this!
4. Introduction of Bangla as a HSC subject Amongst four remarkable meaningful achievements that the Bangladeshi community has made in Australia, introduction of Bangla in government education system has been one, along with the Boisakhi Mela, the International Mother Language Day Monument (Shahid Minar) and Good Morning Australia Fund-raising. Despite the community’s last 20 years’ struggle to introduce Bangla as a HSC subject (ATAR or similar), it would be of immense long-term value if the HC can also play its part in running soft diplomacy - where and when possible.
5. E-Visa E-visa is now an obvious means for many diplomatic missions in Australia and I strongly suggest the HC introduces this as a matter of priority. This can dramatically increase tourism in Bangladesh and help the nation’s economy. The modern Bangladesh being the ‘digital Bangladesh’, e-Visa should be a logical outcome. Digitisation can be a great weapon against any corrupt or undue conducts.
6. Climate Change Adaptation Fund Bangladesh has been one of the worst affected nations due to consequences of Global Warming, hence Climate Change-induced impacts. I trust, within its diplomatic bindings, the HC can facilitate a (transparent) fund-collection campaign, both from the community at large and the Government of Australia, for this Fund. Billions of dollars would be needed to stop mobilisation of ‘Climate Refugee’ from fleeing the nation. On the contrary, by taking pragmatic mitigation and adaptation measures, this emerging human catastrophe can be avoided.
7. Water and Environmental Management It’s a pity that a nation that goes under so much of water during monsoon, hardly any of this water is conserved for utilisation during non-monsoon needs. Australia being a ‘dry continent’, have has evolved wonderful tools and techniques in water and environmental management. Could not the HC harness opportunities for borrowing some of the wisdom and knowledge from Australia?
The HC might also examine how might it inspire Australia to take a bolder role in ensuring Bangladesh gets its fair-share of the Ganges flow through Farraka Barrage at the dire times of her needs. Bangladesh’s agriculture, forestry and the culture as a whole, including the very existence of the mighty Sundarbans Mangroves have much to suffer from these unilateral and inhumane water withdrawals. Certainly, international pressures and persistent trans-boundary water dialogues can help alleviate this situation.
8. Solar Technology and Renewable Energy Australia being the first country that has phased out commercialisation of solar technology; how might Bangladesh borrow some of its knowledge in empowering the rural Bangladesh through a solar revolution! Might the rooves of the country boats, the rickshaws, bullock carts and similar small-scale but numerous outlets harness solar benefits? Along with this, should all educational facilities and government establishments have solar systems on the rooves? I believe, Australia has much to offer in this area.
9. Scholarships and Exchanges The existing sports scholarship has huge potential to expand in new horizons. The nation that gifted the first Bangalee swimming legend from Asia, Brojen Das (70), to cross the English Channel in 1958; could not it again gift more Brojen? Australia being such a successful swimming nation and Bangladesh having this heritage, I believe there is more to benefit from each other’s’ accomplishments.
Similarly, the uniqueness of the nation’s sacrifice for language and the deep-rooted connection with the first ever Nobel Laureate from Asia Kobi Guru Rabindranath Tagore, literature is a natural ground of huge potential for exchange.
Poverty alleviation prescriptions that are developed in Bangladesh by another Nobel Laureate Prof Mohammad Yonus can be barters for diplomatic exchanges!
Other areas such as agriculture, veterinary, offshore science, supply chain and logistics, judiciary and parliamentary democracy, events management, systems management, health and medicine, forensic detection, electoral processes, women empowerment, domestic violence, tourism, etc are few of many areas where several-times more scholarships that present could be demanded from Australia.
10. Identity Crisis My personal observation has been that many of the second generation migrant Bangladeshi youth in Australia find it hard to relate themselves to Bangladesh. I believe it’s mainly an image issue. They see Bangladesh as a nation of unrest, unruly, anarchy, corruption, inequality, chaos, environmentally degraded, economically backward and, above all, a corridor for natural calamities. Unfortunately, added to these have been some poor choices that some Bangladeshis happen to make here in Australia in displaying their national and cultural identities, which have made this image situation even worse. Perhaps, only Cricket saves us at the moment!
Actually, a willingness to relate with Bangladesh by especially religiously minor second generation migrant Bangladeshi youth is alarmingly low. It’s a shame.
My claim is, neither the community nor the HC has been doing anything fruitful to improve this situation. This is frustrating! We need to construct new bridges between these generations and I believe the HC can help changing these images.
11. Fifty-50 Milestone Finally, I believe, Bangladesh has been given a wonderful cause to try to turn around and change its fortune and image, by utilising the year 2021 as a milestone, when she will celebrate her 50th Birthday. Could the nation take just 50 achievable targets that can truly change the nation and at the same time improve the world’s view about Bangladesh. One way could be by making sure that through all her HCs and other spokes-avenues, she invites rest of the world to celebrate with her this remarkable day. Another way could be by inviting the world to visit Bangladesh and part-take in her progress and prosperity in any way they can.
However, before inviting others, Bangladesh needs to demonstrate that it has the institutional, political and genuine commitments as well as mechanisms in place towards the Turn Around. It has five years to do this. Not only that, let it draw down a roadmap for the coming 50 years, with specific targets for each five-year block!
I believe, all expatriate Bangladeshis, including those in Australia, would be willing to do their bits in attaining this remarkable milestone.
Thank you Mr High Commissioner.
Dr Swapan Paul Sydney, Australia firstname.lastname@example.org Ex-President, Bangla Prosar Committee Inc Ex-President, Bangladesh Society for Puja & Culture Inc Ex-Advisor, Migrant Resource Centre Parramatta Vice-President, Ekushe Academy Australia Inc Convenor, Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN) Sydney
Published on: 16-Jun-2016 BRAND NEW DHANMONDI APARTMENT FOR SALE Located near Dhanmondi lake north west facing 6th floor 2200 sq. feet approx. 3 Beds 2 car space lift servants generator security community hall etc. Will suit non resident Bangladeshis living in USA UK Australia New Zealand South East Asia & the Middle East. Full payment will have to be made in Australia. Please contact E: email@example.com M: 0425 335 064
Published on: 30-May-2016
Just 1 year old Bangladeshi community organisation in Sydney, ''Listen For'', announces a grand show....Bangladesh Night 2016 !
সিডনিতে মর্মান্তিক দুর্ঘটনায় বাংলাদেশী ডাক্তার নিহত
কাজী সুলতানা শিমিঃ ওয়েস্টার্ন সিডনির রুটি হিলস-এ নিজ গাড়ীতে চাপা পরে গত ১২ই মে বাংলাদেশী ডাক্তার ডঃ গোলাম তৌফিক মর্মান্তিকভাবে মৃত্যুবরণ করেন (ইন্না লিল্লাহে ওয়া ইন্না ইলাইহে রাজিউন)। ঘটনার বিবরণে প্রকাশ ডঃ তৌফিক তার স্ত্রী ও দুই সন্তানকে নিয়ে তার বন্ধুর বাসায় বেড়াতে যান এবং বন্ধুর বাসার সামনের ড্রাইভওয়েতে তার টয়োটা কেমরি গাড়ীটি পার্ক করেন। গাড়ীর পেছনের সিটে ছিলেন তার স্ত্রী ও দুই সন্তান। গাড়ী থেকে বের হবার পর তিনি লক্ষ্য করেন হ্যান্ডব্রেক না তোলার কারণে গাড়ীটি ঢালুতে নামতে শুরু করে। এমতাবস্থায় তিনি গাড়ীটিকে থামানোর চেষ্টা করেন কিন্তু ড্রাইভওয়ে ঢালু থাকার কারণে থামাতে ব্যর্থ হন এবং তিনি নিজেই নিজ গাড়ীর নিচে চাপা পড়েন।
প্রতিবেশীরা তৎক্ষণাৎ গাড়ী চাপা পরা অবস্থা থেকে তাকে উদ্ধার করার চেষ্টা করেন। কিন্তু দুর্ভাগ্যবশত: পুলিশ ও এ্যাম্বুলেন্স পৌঁছানোর আগেই তিনি মারা যান। মৃত্যুকালে তার বয়স হয়েছিল ৪০ বৎসর। তিনি মেলবোর্নে জেনারেল প্র্যাকটিসনার (GP) হিসেবে কর্মরত ছিলেন। সিডনীতে তার পরিবার বসবাস করায় প্রায়ই তাকে মেলবোর্ন-সিডনি আসা যাওয়া করতে হতো। প্রবাসী বাংলাদেশী চিকিৎসক সংগঠন ও বাংলাদেশী স্থানীয় কমিউনিটির সকলে তার এই অকাল মৃত্যুতে গভীর শোক প্রকাশ করেন।
Published on: 13-May-2016
Tomar sundor lekhar jonno onek dhonnobad!
I feel encouraged by your notes on the bangla-sydney.com. Your notes are timely because they come at a crucial juncture when the percentage of uptake of institutional learning of Bangla by kids in Sydney (or Australia for that matter) is lower than before at the same time the number of formal institutions for teaching Bangla in Sydney has been the highest. You may wonder why I had to make the above remark! Well, in case you are not aware, alongside quite a few community schools that run on Sundays and partly supported by the NSW Government, the Government itself runs Saturday schools for Bangla. Such classes have been running for the last 10 years but with very minimum number of students. Will you believe, Imran, that just because of a shortage of two students, one of the two centres (the Dulwich Hill centre) will most likely be closed soon. Further, between both the centres, we need only 20 regular students of yr 7-10 to learn Bangla for 2.5 hours only on Saturdays.
My sincere hope is your writing should inspire kids to learn Bangla in both formal and informal ways. Perhaps, it’s the parents to be inspired more than their kids. I seriously wish that the community schools, such as those on Sundays, run well and are well attended, and also we see recruits from these schools to the Saturday School centres. Then, we, I imply Bangla Prosar Committee Inc, the community group that has been liaising with the NSW Government regarding Saturday School, can request the Government to introduce Bangla as an elective subject at HSC. When added, the grace marks could acutely help one’s ATAR for better admissions at higher degree studies.
See Imran, out of more than 40,000 Bangladeshis now living in Australia and additional 20,000 Bangla-speaking people from West Bengal, we have been struggling to manage just 20 students! I hope this picture changes due to your notes and also hope that when you reach that stage, you will continue your learning Bangla and go to Saturday School.
You may wonder why parents are not inspiring their kids to learn Bangla! Well, some of them do learn at home. But most don’t. Their parents think that their kids must only learn English and need not communicating in Bangla, as it might be an extra pressure on their kids. Such parents try to communicate primarily in English (I mean the English of their standard; often sub-standard) and in effect, end up confusing such kids. Rather, at home they should only communicate in Bangla from the very childhood and that would help them learning the language as well as building a desire to continue formal learning at schools. In addition to just learning the language at formal institutions, a formal learning gives them the certificates that they may need one day for employment and other purposes.
Perhaps one of the main reasons of such an inertia has been a lack of awareness of the likely benefits of learning Bangla in Australia. Apart from the cognitive, cultural and other benefits, there are real potential for the Australian graduates to enter in to Australian/Bangladeshi businesses. I can share my wife’s frustrations with you in that since she does not understand Hindi at all she dearly misses watching Bollywood films! Her agony is heart-breaking!
Guess who will Australian businesses, such as Woolworths, First State Super, Australian banks, Australian companies that import garments from Bangladesh, Australian Ambassador to Dhaka, an Australian university opening a campus in Bangladesh, and so on, will prefer to employ as the head of their business in Bangladesh? Definitely look for him/her who is an Australian graduate and trained in Australia but can communicate in Bangla.
Imran, if you are not aware, the first Bangladeshi-British who was appointed as the British High Commissioner to Bangladesh was Mr Anwar Choudhury during 2004-2008. The irony is, when he was bomb attacked in Sylhet, he was able to save his life only because he could speak Bangla, and most probably Sylheti dialect as well.
As recently as last month the newest Australian Ambassador to India is an Indian-Australian – Ms Harinder Sidhu. Mr Peter Varghese was her predecessor and also of the same origin. And, both of them communicate well in their respective mother languages. Another Australian-Indian Ambassador is currently posted in Israel. These are merely a handful of examples.
Then, how about Bangladeshi-owned and rapidly growing businesses in Australia? Who would be their preference if there are two candidates for a top job and both are equally capable except that one can communicate in Bangla? Likewise, recently in many Medical Centres in Sydney, there has been a serious hunt for Doctors (GPs) from their ethnic backgrounds and those who can communicate in their mother languages. Then comes literature. Bangladesh although such a small nation, the second largest volume of literatures in the world are in Bangla. Many Bangla-speaking writers have been prolifically writing world-class literature, purely because of their ability to communicate in Bangla.
Trust me, when you become a graduate, your employment prospect will be much higher than your Bangladeshi peers who do not speak Bangla. As simple as that. Further, because you can communicate in at least Bangla and English, if you wanted to learn another language you will pick it much quicker than others!
If I may join with your urge to the Bangla-speaking Australian parents, who have school-going kids, please consider formal learning of Bangla by your kid. You will not regret; rather the contrary is a strong possibility.
Thanks once again Imran, for your courage in freely sharing your inspiring views.
Dr Swapan Paul (firstname.lastname@example.org) Ex-President of Bangla Prosar Committee Inc.
Published on: 2-Apr-2016
You Tube Innovation Md Masudul Huq
In 2005 Three young friends launched you tube in California. It became a popular site; founders are Steve Chen, Chad Hurly and Jawed Karim. They developed you tube to share videos quickly and easily. The site started growing quickly when Heinz and Peterson uploaded their weeding videos. The videos started spreading through Facebook, Twitter, print media and Television news. It went viral, spreading like a virus. More and more people using it everyday.
Steven Chen born in Taipei, Taiwan in 1978 and his father was a successful businessman in Taiwan who expanded his business in Chicago, USA. Steve was 8 years old only at that time. Chad Hurley was born in Pennsylvania USA in 1977. Jawed Karim was born in 1979 in East Germany. His father is of Bangladeshi origin. Both father and mothers were scientists. His father Naimul Karim was a Bangladeshi chemist employed in 3M Company in USA. His mother Christine was German professor of Bio Chemistry. Karim was interested in science from his childhood. As a boy he spent many hours in her mother’s laboratory while she used to take classes.
Steve , Chad and Jawed came up with an idea for a web site that would make sharing home videos easier. They needed one office to work and decided to start in Chad's garage. They established a company called You Tube LLC and registered a domain. Within a short time youtube .com was up and started running with a test version of the site. The site’s first video ``ME at the zoo’’ was posted on April 23, 2005 which was only for 18 seconds. It featured Karim in front of the elephants' enclosure. The trio then started working to improve their creation. They added different features to the site. Users now able to add their videos by a simple copy and paste and share it with any one they want.
By December 2005 users worldwide would quickly made it an internet phenomenon. Karim did not want any title, salary or benefit from the company. He rather acted as an adviser. Karim began his studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign but postponed completing his bachelor’s degree. He was offered a job at PayPal Company in California where he together with Chad Hurley and Steve Chen developed an idea that affects countless computer users around the world. In January 2006 about 5 million visitors accessed the site, in May 20 million, in July more than 30 million visitors. When it started expansion like a virus Google wanted to buy it. On October 9, 2006, Google purchased You Tube for $1.65 billion in stocks. Both Chen and Hurly received $300 million worth of Google stocks in the deal. Karim received $66 million in Google stocks. You tube was used in USA and UK for mobilizing opinion of people during election, for advertisement, music, videos etc.
After leaving You tube, Karim became a student at Stanford University in northern California. He completed his Masters in Computer science there and now working towards a doctoral degree. In 2009, Karim cofounded youniversity ventures with Kevin Hartz and Keith Rabois.
Stev Chen, Chad Hurly and Jawed Karim’s creation continues to touch the lives of countless people worldwide. A good environment, Positive attitude, guidance and dedication to the purpose led them to their goal.
Ref: you Tube, Technology pioneers
Md Masudul Huq, Woodcroft, Sydney
Published on: 16-Mar-2016
Peace Keeping in Europe Md. Masudul Huq
I was a Peace keeper in former Yugoslavia in 1994 where 50 police officers were with me from Bangladesh .I was posted in sector south Knin from where I used to visit different sectors on CTO to see them as I was Contingent commander. Knin was a nice place not very far away from Adriatic Sea. Police officers of different Continents were with me. I worked with Canadians, Scandinavians, Africans and Asians. It was a very good experience to work in such multicultural environments. I was accommodated in the 1st floor of Maria’s house which was a 4 story building where other monitors also stayed. My office was only 1 km away from my residence.
Before my posting to Knin I was at Daruvar in sector west for a month. In day time we used to visit different areas to see the law and order of the area along with other monitors, sometimes with polish or sometimes with Scandinavians. It was very interesting to me to see a different topography and different people. Every morning we used to sit in a meeting to discuss different issues and distribution of areas for visiting, patrolling etc. One day I was asked for an enquiry into a death threat Complain which was submitted by a local man from Daruvar. I along with Captain Tadius of Poland visited the house of complainant but could not ascertain the person who threatened the complainant. No evidence collection was possible at that time as it was conflicting time and war zone. Just after a few days I was transferred to Knin as Chief of Administration, sector south.
Here all monitors were from Canada, Scandinavia, Russia, Portugal, Egypt and Bangladesh who were very friendly and cooperative to each other. Knin was a small town having a railway station with a big compound. But the rail line was out of order due to war, so no rail communication was possible at that time. One night there was a serious firing over the area . All monitors left the house and took shelter in our Head Quarters. In the mean time there were negotiations to stop firing and subsequently when firing stopped we came back to our residence.
One morning I found Maria was crying, I went to her room and asked why she was crying. Maria told me last night her brother’s house was looted and everything was taken away. I told her, “if you like you can record this information in police station but she said, I would not record this to police station”. Later on I came to know she has ethnic problems. She is from one community and her husband is from another community. So she does not like to get involved in it. It is a good decision due to prevailing situation at that time.
Everybody in the mission is for one year. One day sector chief asked me if I was willing to serve in Macedonian sector. Since I have almost completed ten months of my tenure and rotation time was very near I was hesitant although I was a bit thrilled to go to Macedonia. Alexander the Great was born in Macedon in 356 B.C.E. who conquered almost half of the known world at that time. His Father Philip also conquered vast areas of Greece and adjoining areas. Alexander was trained by his father and he was very courageous. He defeated Persian king and reached up to today’s India-Pakistan areas. He fell ill in Babylon and died at the age of 32. Alexander could not select his next commander and because of that there were clash of opinion amongst his generals who returned to Macedonia.
At the end of the mission all monitors remain very eager to go back home and busy in different works, visiting friends, shopping and arranging farewell. I participated a farewell party in North sector which was organized by Bangladeshi monitors. All sector officers participated including Europeans and Asians. Irish officers and Bangladeshi officers spoke in the function. It was a very successful get-together and farewell function. One lady interpreter was in the function who interpreted my speech from English to Yugoslavian language. After a few days we returned to our country. It was a very successful mission.
It is so inspiring and exciting to learn about the initiative in the 6th of February, the Clean-up Bangladesh Day. This is a tremendous beginning for a nation that has so much to clean-up; why not at least start with rubbish clean-up?
The concept of Clean-up Australia Day is quite old now and has been a very successful initiative. Last year more than half a million people (out of only 23millions) have participated the Day, which has been the first Sunday of March every year. I trust the Bangladeshi initiative will also see successes. Since an initiative of this magnitude requires planning, logistics, support and participation, to be continuing and sustainable, I’d like to offer a few suggestions:
- Secure corporate sponsorship and corporate involvement;
- Involve educational institutions as the key driving force; children are great in educating their parents;
- Collaborate with Clean-up Australia Day organisation (http://www.cleanupaustraliaday.org.au/), who have a lot of experience and might be able to offer support, suggestions and funding;
- Establish partnerships with rubbish recycling industry as a potential ‘buy-back’ or ‘purchase’ of the rubbish collected; and
- In case the 6th of February each year is not found suitable for the Day then it could be the first Saturday of February each year, as a weekend might suit everybody better?
If I can, I’d also love to join this on at least one occasion in Bangladesh, as I do each and every year here in Australia since 1996.
Swapan Paul, Sydney (email@example.com) [A volunteer Convenor of Bangladesh Environment Network, Sydney]
I am hoping that this article will be thought provoking and act as a catalyst for some soul searching on the part of the reader. It is definitely not intended to undermine or belittle any individual or a group. Most may not even accept the hypothesis presented, but at the least, some may be tinkered to think of an alternative of his or her own.
“How is the situation now in Bangladesh” is a common question that anyone returning or coming from Bangladesh is likely to face one time or other. I have had difficulty in dealing with this question. I had noticed that whatever my answer had been, often few seemed happy with it, and few others not so amused. The reaction depended on which side of the political fence one was in. Later I adopted, I thought a safe ploy. I would say; “if you are a faithful of the party in power than the situation is very good, otherwise - it is grave”. I turned out to be nobody’s friend.
In any case those of us that live abroad are often, for valid reasons, very concerned about our home country. I have participated in more discussions about the wellbeing and future of Bangladesh in the last five years in Sydney than in the previous thirty five years that I spent in Bangladesh. I suppose those that live in Bangladesh, accept whatever is there in its face value and live with it.
However, I feel there is one subconscious desire among many to return home some day if and when the situation improves. I know I myself feel that very strongly. I often dream of returning to live again in my lifelong surroundings in the Dhaka city. Like many others I hope and pray that Bangladesh will become a better place soon. But will it? And when?
I have never attempted to guess the answer. I think that I have neither the intellect nor the knowledge to delve into such a complicated matter. I am sure there are many analyses and inferences involving complex economic, socio-political and a host of other issues on this matter. However, one that seemed very simple and plausible to me came from the observation of a foreigner who worked and lived in Bangladesh for little over two years.
If I remember his name correctly, it is Phil Voucee. During the late 80s or early 90s, he was the Head of the Save the Children Fund Australia (SCFA) in Bangladesh. I befriended him at the Australian High Commission Recreation Centre in Dhaka. We played tennis twice a week for almost two years. Our usual routine was to sit and chat for some time after our game. Phil would sometimes talk about his work in Bangladesh and solicited my opinion on matters he thought I could shed light on.
On one of those evenings, Phil announced that he was about to finish his two-year term in Bangladesh and would leave soon. He mentioned that over the last two years he had made some specific observations about Bangladesh and its people. He went on to say that he had worked in few other countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America before coming to Bangladesh. He thought that the work standards of the people that he worked with here in Bangladesh were far better than that of most other places that he had been in. He had high regards for the bureaucrats, managers, doctors, engineers, teachers and others that he came across. He found most of them extremely capable and efficient in their field of work.
I was delighted to hear such rare praise of us. I thanked him for the glowing comments. He kept quiet for some time with a mischievous smile on his face. A little later he spoke up to say that all these had given rise to a question within him. He needed to find an appropriate person to make that query to. He thought I could be such a person for I had lived and worked most of my life in Bangladesh and at the same time had a fair bit of exposure to Western values and culture. He wished to put me on the spot. I put up a brave face waiting for the million dollar question. Phil asked: “In spite of all these things, why is this country in such shambles?”
I am no social scientist or economist who would have an appropriate answer to this question. I gave up and requested him to tell me of his findings. I believed he had one. One, who had made such minute observation over a period of time, must have had a finding of his own. He began by describing his work place in Bangladesh.
Phil headed an office of approximately 30 employees of different levels. He found most of them good, some very good and few not so good. One young man seemed much brighter than most. Over time, this young man had climbed up to a level in the organization where he was second to Phil. He performed remarkably well under Phil’s supervision. Phil made him the Head of a section where he had to supervise and direct a number of staff members. He was also responsible for taking decisions concerning his own area.
It turned out to be a nightmare. He failed to mange his staff properly and continually came to Phil with complaints about them. He was always very hesitant about taking decisions on his own. Phil said he had observed similar patterns of behavior in few other Bangladeshis when they were put in a leadership or decision-making position. This baffled him and he set out to find if there was any specific reason for such patterns of behavior.
This reminded me of a similar situation while I worked at the International Center for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR,B). There used to be six Program Directors with the authority and responsibility very close and similar to that of the Head of the organization, the Director. Of the six Program Directors three were Bangladeshis and three expatriates. While the expatriates seemed at ease at working independently and taking decisions on their own, their Bangladeshi counterparts mostly seemed hesitant and took almost everything to the Director for the final decisions.
Phil’s work involved visiting Save the Children Fund funded schools across the country. He observed that our early education system involved very little group work or group education. Children were taught and encouraged to strive for individual excellence. Concept of taking pride in group performance was non-existent. Most parents tried to ensure that their children had minimum intermingling with other children in the neighborhood. They feared that such activities may distract their children from the bookish education. There was very little scope or training for our children to grow up with much needed life skills - skills that are essential to be able to work together in teams towards common goals and to be a leader or manager of such goals.
Phil also observed that while there are rewards for success in our society, the punishments are severe for failures. A child may get a pat on the back for good results but failures would most likely bring about severe beating for the poor soul. As a result, the fears of failure always outweighed the chance of success in our minds. We appear to avoid confronting important issues and most of the time - play it safe. We are reluctant to take decisions in our work place in case it backfires.
As I was listening to Phil my mind traveled back to early seventies when I was about to enter government service after finishing university. An elderly retired gentleman offered me the following words of wisdom: “If you wish to prosper in the government service, make sure that you do not do anything. Even if you are the best of the best, there will always be a chance that out of ten decisions you make, at the least one could be wrong. This one incorrect action will haunt you throughout your career in the form of an entry in your “Confidential Report”. On the other hand if you do not do anything your report will remain clean as a slate”!
Phil visited many Bangladeshi households as their guest. He admired the neatness and cleanliness of most houses. At the same time, he noticed that in many cases the same household dumped its garbage on the road beside the house. He noticed that some households even stole newly laid bricks from the road in front of their own homes to repair or beautify their boundary walls. He inferred that these behavior patterns pointed to the lack of training and upbringing to appreciate collective belongingness. People are rarely seen queuing at bus stops so that everyone had a fair chance of getting on board. The concept of common wealth appeared to be very uncommon among most.
Our early education system and home environment produced some individual performers but lacked in scope to produce the much needed group performers and its leaders. To this day, the system discourages risk taking and exploring new heights. Consequently it is falling behind in world competition. My friend Phil inferred that unless we review and correct our early education system both at schools and within the family and then on to the society, it may not be possible to see a Bangladesh that most Bangladeshis aspire to see.
Bangladesh may have produced few outstanding individuals but failed to produce the right kind of leaders and mangers to take the country into the future. Some of it is due to our social behavior and attitude and some due to our historical background. We have always been ruled and never been a ruler. A nation needs to either rule itself and/or rule others to learn to be a ruler or leader / manager.
I thing we missed an opportunity to grow new leaderships by being helped into our independence within a very short time of nine months only. Had it been a lengthy protracted war of independence, new leaders could have immerged through failures and triumphs and the bad apples on both sides of the fence would have been eliminated in the process. Vietnam suffered enormous destruction fighting almost 30 years (11 years against France and 18 years against US) till it became victorious in 1975. The long struggle produced tried leadership and eliminated the bad elements. Vietnam is now a role model for other developing countries for its development and progress.
Phil Voucee hoped that if the reeducation and retraining process started now immediately, thirty years on Bangladesh could hope to get hold of that evasive golden deer (Shonar Hareen) that this nation has been cherishing through its poems and songs. More than ever, today this country needs to start the process and work through the next thirty years to produce a new generation, armed with the new mindset and life skills to takeover and run the country. Are we, as a nation to give it a try so that our future generations may have a better place to live and work?
Back in the 90s, I worked in a team of Asian development Bank (ADB) consultants contracted to develop a power sector plan for Bangladesh. On completion of the task the ADB team made a formal presentation of the draft plan in front of the then Minister for Power. The team leader introduced the plan by saying that it contained three achievable goals: a 5 year short-term goal, a 10 year mid-term goal and a 20 year long-term goal. The honorable Minister turned towards me, the only Bangla-speaking member of the consulting team, and harshly said ‘আরে ভাই আমরা আছি আর দুই বছর ইলেকশন পর্যন্ত, আমি পাচ বছরের প্লান দিয়া কি করমু?’ (We will be in the government for only two years until the next election. What good is a five year plan for me?).
It may be the appropriate occasion to draw conclusion to this write-up with a quotation from John F. Kennedy the 35th president of the United States of America; “The great French Marshall Lyautey once asked his gardener to plant a tree. The gardener objected that the tree was slow growing and would not reach maturity for 100 years. The Marshall replied, 'In that case, there is no time to lose; plant it this afternoon!”
Barrister Salahuddin Ahmed is a senior member of the Bangladeshi community in Sydney. He lives in Maroubra for over 30 years. His new book DUTIES OF MUSLIMS REFLECTING ON THE QURAN has recently been published by A.P.H. Publishing Corporation, New Delhi.
The book is available from A.P.H. Corporation, 4435-36/7, Ansari Road, Darya Ganj, New Delhi 110002 and also from Bagchee website
The book, bound in hard cover, has 288 pages and priced at 1295 Indian rupees.
It has been reviewed by The Financial Express and HOLIDAY. The links to these reviews are given below:
What's Happening to Olympic Park Boishakhi Mela! Faruk Kader
The last Baishakhi Mela held in Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Court has raised a question about the trajectory this celebration of Bengali New Year is following. We are aware of the hard work done every year by Bangabandhu Council of Australia in organising this event. However, this year the event’s outcome fell short of the community’s expectations in terms of our traditional festivities of Bengali New Year.
The new venue of Tennis Court itself was disappointing. It was hard to accept that this had more capacity than the previous one. The Athletic Centre provided an uninterrupted vista of the Mela on a grand scale as seen from the gallery – stage, stalls and the leisurely moving spectators nestled on the green grass of the ground. The new venue created a physical separation between the stage and the stalls erected outside the court.
I arrived at the Mela around 5 PM just before when the speeches of dignitaries got underway. What followed after that hardly matched the true sprits of our traditional Bengali New Year! The songs by the rock band were not up to the mark. It’s a pity that the iconic Tagore songs celebrating the advent of Bengali New Year were missing.
Another disappointing part of the Mela was the fashion show, which went for quite some time. The show was a brazen display of extravagant Lahengas, putting aside our traditional Bengali cloth-ware like Shari, Punjabi, and Lungi. I am not opposed to Lahenga and other trendy types in the show, but not in deference to our traditional cloth-ware, which should be the centrepiece of such fashion show. The show also took significant quota of time of the programme, so that Ankahi Alamgir’s solo had to be abandoned, when threatened by a storm. The fashion parade in my opinion should be brief and reflect mainly on our traditional cloth-ware.
Many spectators like me are disappointed and disillusioned about the way this Baishakhi Mela has been conducted in recent years. The young generation has a spontaneity to get carried away by the atmosphere of celebration without going into deep. But we the older generation has a responsibility to nurture and preserve our Bengali culture. Otherwise, it would be lost among our future generations and nothing would be left for us to be proud of.
My request to the organisers is to uphold the true spirit and values of our Bengali culture, unadulterated and unsullied by external influence. I trust that the organisers would be awake to the expectation of the Bangladeshi community. So that going to Baishakhi Mela every year would be an enjoyable and worthwhile experience for all of us.
Faruk Kader, Sydney
Published on: 25-Apr-2015
Barrister Salahuddin's New Book
Barrister Salahuddin Ahmed is a senior member of the Bangladeshi community in Sydney. He lives in Maroubra for over 30 years. His new book GUIDE FOR MUSLIMS has recently been published by the well-known Malaysian publishers A.S. Noordeen. This book is intended to serve the purpose of using it as a guide to the Qur'an to find topic-wise discussion and analysis. The book is available through Internet from the following website: http://www.daralwahi.com/general.htm
The book has 332 pages and priced at 42 Malaysian Ringgit (AUD $15). It has been reviewed by The Daily Star and The New Nation. The links to these reviews are given below:
The Seventies Show Remembering late Masud Alam Khan Mostafa Abdullah
Henry Winkler’s ‘Happy days’ was my favorite TV series back in the seventies when we were here in Sydney. Winkler played the role of Fonzie, the hunk guy on his motor cycle and his trade mark leather jacket, for whom every girl in town went berserk. He was the mark of youth, humor and romance. He is supposed to look the same and never grow wrinkles on his face or a bulge in the middle, something that many of us involuntarily dream for ourselves. When you see Henry Winkler on the TV now, he is not the same anymore. I feel sorry for him and I pretend that it is only him who has changed. Not me. Fortunately I do not see myself on that TV screen. Thank God, it is not a mirror.
But Ruma and Jamal woke me up from my dream the other day. They arranged a lunch in their house for some of the seventies crowd and their offspring who grew up together. Some of whom I have not seen in thirty years. I looked through the faces and saw three more generations that has come into being in the meanwhile. It dawned on me that I have also become a part of the seventies shows, like the ‘Happy days’ of that era. It has had indeed been happy days.
Ruma and Jamal, late Khan Bhai’s daughter and son-in-law did a splendid job of organizing the generous lunch. Some of us, who now has to watch for the red eyes of our spouses before reaching out for the second serving, filled ourselves to the bream. The food was delicious and plentiful and desserts made in heaven. Thank you Ruma and Jamal; for organizing the ‘Seventies Show’, as I would like to call it.
At the end of the day Ruma remembered her father Masud Alam Khan. We said a prayer for Khan Bhai who left all of us on the 22nd of February, 2003 at the age of 63 leaving behind his beloved wife, three sons, a daughter, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, four grandchildren and hordes of friends and acquaintances. I personally feel a strong bond with him as there had been a rare occasion that he did not look us up whenever he went to Bangladesh. Every time we had been in Sydney, we never missed the scrumptious rare treats at the Khan residence. This trait for sure has caught up with their only daughter.
Khan Bhai was a big man with a big smile on his broad face that reflected the simplicity of his heart and love for the fellow human being. He was one of the founding members for establishment of today’s Rooty Hill Mosque and remained an active member of its governing committee till his last. He was instrumental in working with other Bangladeshis for setting up of the Riverstone Muslim graveyard, a project that he held very close to his heart. As Allah would have it, Alhamdulillah, Khan Bhai was the first to be laid to rest in this graveyard, the place he dearly readied with others with their labour of love and sweat. Very few knew that during his life time, every week he washed and cleaned the Rooty Hill Mosque court yard and amenities area with other volunteers.
Whenever he could, he would visit ailing and distressed fellow Bengali acquaintances at home or hospitals to comfort them thru their bad days. He was happy to assist newly arrived Bengali families with helpful advice and household amenities whenever possible. He shunned unnecessary arguments that lead to dissention amongst the Muslims themselves. He was a great husband, father and a grandfather. His grandchildren Javeed, Sabina, Shazia and Nadia were dearest to his heart. He often spent time with young boys and girls encouraging them to pursue education and to gain wisdom from their parents, grandparents and elders.
His long undetected high blood pressure coupled with Type I diabetes damaged his heart that claimed his life prematurely. His Namaz-e-Janaza prayer at the Rooty Hill Mosque was conducted by Maulana Tanhveer who prayed with him in the mosque and also at his home. His Janaza drew a huge crowd from Bengali, Pakistani and Indian community who turned up to show their last respect. The eulogy delivered by the Imam described the greatness of the heart of this humble man who quietly served his fellow human being without any aspiration for recognition or fame. May Allah forgive his sins on this earth and admit him in the Jannah.
Masud Khan was born in 1939 in Calcutta (Kolkata) where his ancestors made their home having moved from Manikganj of the then East Bengal. Over the six generations the family prospered in business and landed property across the Bengal. Young Masud Khan witnessed the horrors of racial massacres at the tender age of only 7 while fleeing from India to East Pakistan in 1947 with his father. Sadly his mother passed away when he was only 4 years old. Having settled in Dhaka after the division of India, Khan Bhai completed his schooling in Dhaka’s prestigious St. Gregory’s High school at Laxmibazar. He later completed his tertiary education in Accounting from Karachi, West Pakistan.
He tied the marital knot in 1959 with a stunningly beautiful woman of a respectable family in Bangladesh, Rabia Khanam; our dear Bhabi. Bhabi is a strong and a determined woman who held on to her family and steered it through the difficult times after the untimely and sudden loss of her husband. Even today she is all smiles and inspiration for all of us in spite of her multiple ailments. We wish her a long, happy and a healthy life.
Khan Bhai started his working life in Dhaka at the Bawani Jute Mills in 1959. Later he worked for the British Paint Company as its Accounts Clerk. In 1962 he started working for the Australian High Commission in Karachi and moved with them to capital Islamabad in 1967. He later moved to Dhaka in 1969 with the establishment of Australian High Commission Chancery in the Hotel Purbani at Motijheel. He served their as the Senior Superintendent of the Chancery.
He was highly commended by the first Australian High Commissioner to Bangladesh, James L. Allen (1973), for his role during the difficult times in Dhaka, particularly during the civil war in 1971. At the risk of his personal safety, he collected photographs and information of incidences of atrocities of the Pakistani Army for the Australian Foreign Service. Incidentally, Australia was the first western country to recognize Bangladesh and send humanitarian assistance within a month of its liberation.
The Khan family migrated to Australia on 14 January 1974 and was housed in the Villawood Migrant Hostel, which later became the Detention Centre for illegal immigrants in 1987! Indeed, an historical icon of Australia’s immigration history. Next six months was a struggle that family remembers fondly and their resolve to overcome it. However, Khan Bhai was fortunate enough to land a job with the British Berger Paint Company in Sydney before arriving here. Later he moved to a German company called Leica that manufactured cameras and accessories. The family settled in Homebush to start their new life. Since then the family has moved a long way from where it started. The eldest son Mehmood Alam Khan completed his undergraduate and postgraduate studies from Sydney and NSW universities and is now an Executive Director at the Australian Taxation office. Second son Mehfuz Alam Khan works for the Australian Service Union. The third son Reza Alam Khan is employed with the Commonwealth Department of Human Services. The youngest and only daughter Shahana Masud Ghazi (Ruma) is a Tax Auditor with the Australian Taxation Office.
I am glad that I got this opportunity to remember Khan Bhai because of the efforts of Ruma and Jamal. We should be able to do this from time to time to celebrate the lives of those that were with us and welcome those that are taking over. The significance of the linkage between the past, present and the future cannot be overemphasized. Without this linkage, soon we will not know where we came from, who we are and what may become of those that would come after us.
* Photographs & Family details courtesy of Ruma & Mehmood.
১. সিডনির টেলিভিশনে এক কমার্শিয়ালে কয়েকদিন আগে শুনলাম একজন স্বাভাবিক মানুষ গড়ে তাঁর জীবনের ২০বছর ঘুমায়, ১৫বছর পরিবারের সান্নিধ্যে কাটায়, ১৩ বছর জীবিকার জন্যে কাজ করে, ৩বছর টয়লেটে-বাথরুমে থাকে…। হঠাৎ মনে হলো গুগুলে সার্চ দিলে হয়তো মানুষের মূল্যবান জীবনের Race Against Time সম্পর্কে আরো কিছু তথ্য পাওয়া যাবে…নিমিষেই অসংখ্য তথ্য বেরিয়ে এলো যা’ হয়তো অনেকেরই জানা। কমার্শিয়ালে শোনা তথ্যের পাশাপাশি আরো পেলাম - বর্তমানে ৮২বছর বয়সী গড় আয়ুর একজন অস্ট্রেলিয়ান তাঁর জীবনের প্রায় ৮বছর ব্যয় করে খাওয়া-দাওয়া এবং ড্রাইভিং-এ, ৩বছর ইন্টারনেট সার্ফিং-এ, আর ঘর-বাড়ি পরিষ্কার-পরিচ্ছন্নতায় ব্যয় করে ১ থেকে ১.৫বছর। মানুষের জীবনযাত্রায় বছরের এই হিসাব বিভিন্ন জাতি এবং যুগের জন্য বিভিন্ন হলেও উন্নত বিশ্বের প্রায় সব দেশেই একই ধরনের চিত্র। ভাবছিলাম বাংলাদেশী মাইগ্রান্ট হয়ে অস্ট্রেলিয়া এখন আমাদের অনেকেরই জন্য স্থায়ীভাবে বসবাসের দেশ হলেও আমরা যদি অস্ট্রেলিয়াতে না এসে বাংলাদেশে স্থায়ীভাবে থাকতাম তাহলে আমাদের জীবনের Race Against Time-টা কেমন হতো?
২. বছরের শেষ দিন সারা পৃথিবীর মানুষ যখন মেতে উঠেছে ২০১৪সালকে বিদায় দিয়ে ২০১৫সালের প্রথম দিনকে স্বাগত জানানোর জন্যে - বাংলাদেশের মানুষ সেখানে এই দুই দিনই কাটিয়েছে হরতালের মধ্যে। আজ একুশে ফেব্রুয়ারি উপলক্ষে যখন এই লেখাটা লিখছি তখন গত ৫০দিনে রাজনৈতিক অস্থিরতার মধ্যে ধীরে-ধীরে উদ্বেগের, উৎকণ্ঠার, আতঙ্কের দেশে পরিণত হয়েছে বাংলাদেশ। পত্রিকায় পড়েছি - এ’বছরের শুরু থেকে চলমান ঘটনা-প্রবাহে শুধু মাত্র বাস-মিনিবাস পরিবহন খাতে দৈনিক ৫০কোটি টাকার ক্ষতি হচ্ছে। সারা দেশে স্বাভাবিক সময়ে প্রায় ৬০হাজার বাস-মিনিবাস চলাচল করে আর এই যানবাহনের সাথে জড়িত রয়েছে প্রায় ২৫লাখ পরিবার সংখ্যায় প্রায় ১কোটি মানুষ। সারাদেশের ২০টি স্থল-বন্দরের মধ্যে নিয়মিতভাবে আমদানি-রপ্তানি হয় ৯টিতে - কার্যত সবই এখন বন্ধ। দেশের বিভিন্ন স্থানে ট্রেন-লাইনের ক্ষতি সাধিত হওয়ায় ঢাকা থেকে বিভিন্ন গন্তব্যে দৈনিক ২৬টি আন্তঃনগর ট্রেনসহ ৬২টি ট্রেনের টাইম-টেবল থাকলেও সম্ভাব্য দুর্ঘটনার আশঙ্কায় নির্ধারিত গতির চেয়ে অনেক কম গতিতে আন্তঃনগর ট্রেন চলাচলের ফলে ট্রেনের যোগাযোগ ব্যবস্থায় ব্যাপক বিপর্যয় এসেছে। ঢাকার মৌলভীবাজারে স্বাভাবিক সময়ে পাইকারি পণ্যের বেচা-কেনার মাধ্যমে প্রতিদিন ৫০০কোটি টাকার লেনদেন হলেও এখন তা’ ২০শতাংশে নেমে এসেছে। বাণিজ্যিক ভিত্তিতে তরল দুধ উৎপাদনকারী সবচেয়ে বড় অঞ্চল পাবনা-সিরাজগঞ্জে দৈনিক ছোট-বড় দুগ্ধ-খামার থেকে দুধ পরিবহনের/বিপণনের অভাবে আনুমানিক ৫০লাখ টাকার লোকসান হচ্ছে। ঢাকার অভিজাত এলাকায় প্রতিষ্ঠিত এক কমিউনিটি সেন্টারের স্বত্বাধিকারী ঘনিষ্ঠ বন্ধুর সাথে আলাপে জানলাম - ঢাকার সরকারী-বেসরকারি মালিকানাধীন প্রায় ৩০০টি কমিউনিটি সেন্টার ডিসেম্বর থেকে ফেব্রুয়ারি পর্যন্ত ব্যস্ত থাকে অনুষ্ঠান আয়োজনে অতিরিক্ত কাজের চাপে। বিয়ের/পর্যটনের মৌসুম, শীতকাল, কর্পোরেট ফাংশন, ইত্যাদির কারণে বছরের এই তিন-মাস ব্যবসার জন্য সারা বছর ধরে অপেক্ষা করে মালিক, কর্মচারী, বাবুর্চি, ইভেন্ট ম্যানেজমেন্ট প্রতিষ্ঠান, ইত্যাদি…হতাশার সুরে বন্ধু বলেই ফেলেন - আর এ’বছর…“নিমন্ত্রণ খেতে এসে বোমার আঘাতের আতঙ্কে”…প্রায় ৯০ভাগ অনুষ্ঠানের বুকিং বাতিল হওয়ায় লোকসানের মাত্রা বেড়েই চলেছে। একই অবস্থা পর্যটন শিল্পে – কক্সবাজার, কাপ্তাই, সেন্টমার্টিন, কুয়াকাটা, জাফলং, চা-বাগান ইত্যাদিতে পর্যটকদের ৭০ভাগ অগ্রিম বুকিং বাতিলের ফলে ইতিমধ্যে আর্থিক ক্ষতির পরিমাণ দৈনিক ২০০কোটি টাকায় দাঁড়িয়েছে।
৩. ছোটবেলা থেকে শুনেছি “শিক্ষাই জাতির মেরুদণ্ড”। বাংলাদেশের ৩৫০জন সদস্যের জাতীয় সংসদের বিশাল লাইব্রেরির সংগ্রহে রয়েছে প্রায় ৮৫হাজার বই-পত্র, সাময়িকী, দুর্লভ দলিল। ২০১৪সালের দশম সংসদে জানুয়ারি থেকে সেপ্টেম্বর মাসে মাত্র ৮১জন সাংসদ এই লাইব্রেরিতে গিয়েছেন মূলত: দৈনিক-পত্রিকা পড়ার জন্যে। দেশের সাংসদদের ব্যক্তিগত ব্যবসায়িক কাজে ব্যস্ততা থাকার কারণে হয়তো জ্ঞানচর্চার প্রতি এতো অনাগ্রহ!!! দেশের চলমান ঘটনা-প্রবাহে জানুয়ারি থেকে শুরু হওয়া শিক্ষাবর্ষের অসংখ্য শিক্ষার্থীর লেখাপড়া ছাড়াও এসএসসি পরীক্ষা বন্ধ কিংবা বিলম্বিত হওয়ায় ১৪লাখ পরীক্ষার্থীদের অনিশ্চিত ভবিষ্যতের কিংবা পাঠ্যপুস্তক বহনকারী ট্রাকে আগুন দেওয়ার খবর শুনে মনে হয়েছে আমরা কোথায় যাচ্ছি?
৪. ঢাকায় গত দেড় মাসে শান্তিপূর্ণভাবে পালিত হলো - দুই পর্বে বিশ্ব ইজতেমা, পুলিশ সপ্তাহ ২০১৫, ডিজিটাল ওয়ার্ল্ড ২০১৫, ইত্যাদি। ময়মনসিংহ বিভাগ দেশের ৮ম বিভাগ হিসাবে কার্যক্রম শুরু করেছে ইতিমধ্যে। বর্ধিত জনসংখ্যার চাহিদা মেটাতে প্রশাসনিক পুনর্বিন্যাস ও প্রশাসন শক্তির বিকেন্দ্রীকরণের প্রয়োজনে হয়তো ঢাকা ও চট্টগ্রাম বিভাগ থেকে ফরিদপুর/গোপালগঞ্জ এবং কুমিল্লা/নোয়াখালী নতুন বিভাগ তৈরি হবে নিকট ভবিষ্যতে। এলাকা ভিত্তিক নতুন নতুন কর্মসংস্থানের সুযোগ তৈরি হয়ে কর্মচাঞ্চল্যে উন্নয়নে মুখরিত হবে স্থানীয় জনপদ।
৫. পারিবারিক এক দাওয়াতে সুস্বাদু খাওয়া-দাওয়ার পাশাপাশি দেশ-বিদেশের সাম্প্রতিক রাজনৈতিক অবস্থা, ক্রিকেট বিশ্বকাপ ২০১৫, ইত্যাদি মুখরোচক ও উত্তেজনাপূর্ণ আলোচনায় আমার গুনি বন্ধুদেরকে প্রশ্ন করি - এমন কি কিছু আছে যা’ গুগুলে সার্চ দিলে “নো রেজাল্ট ফাউন্ড” দেখাবে? চট করে এক পণ্ডিত বন্ধু যিনি প্রায়ই চুপচাপ থাকেন উত্তর দিলেন - বাংলাদেশের যেকোনো দুর্ঘটনার পরে “তদন্ত কমিটির সঠিক প্রতিবেদন” - সার্চ দিলে “নো রেজাল্ট ফাউন্ড” দেখাবে। একই সাথে তিনি বলে ফেলেন - তেলবাহী জাহাজ-ডুবিতে সাড়ে তিন লাখ লিটার তেল সুন্দরবনে ছড়িয়ে পড়ার দুর্ঘটনার তদন্ত কমিটির রিপোর্ট ১০দিনের মধ্যে দেওয়ার কথা থাকলেও গত ৬০দিনে তা’ দেওয়া হয়নি - হায়রে বাংলাদেশ!!!
৬. স্বাধীনতার পরে গত চার দশকে জাতীয় এবং আন্তর্জাতিক পর্যায়ের পরিসংখ্যানে, প্রতিবেদনে কিংবা ইনডেক্স পরিমাপে, প্রযুক্তি, কৃষি, শিক্ষা, খেলাধুলা, উন্মুক্ত-বাণিজ্য, অর্থনীতি, শহরায়ন-নগরায়ন, গার্মেন্টস এবং অন্যান্য রপ্তানি-মুখী শিল্প, রেমিটেন্স, ফরেন রিজার্ভ, ইত্যাদিতে আমাদের বাংলাদেশ অনেক দূর এগিয়ে গেলেও দেশের রাজনৈতিক স্থিতিশীলতা অর্জনে পিছিয়ে রয়েছে - অনেকাংশে ব্যর্থ হয়েছে। স্বাধীনতার যুদ্ধের শুরু থেকে গত ৪৩বছর ধরে বাংলাদেশের মানুষ স্বপ্ন দেখেছে - “মোরা একটি ফুলকে বাঁচাবো বলে যুদ্ধ করি/ এক সাগর রক্তের বিনিময়ে বাংলার স্বাধীনতা আনলো যাঁরা/ আমার সোনার বাংলা আমি তোমায় ভালবাসি/ প্রথম বাংলাদেশ আমার শেষ বাংলাদেশ”। পৃথিবীর সব স্বাধীন দেশে আলাদা ভাবে স্বাধীনতা দিবস আর বিজয় দিবস নেই। কিন্তু বিরল সৌভাগ্যের বাংলাদেশে যথাযোগ্য সম্মানের সাথে রয়েছে - স্বাধীনতা দিবস আর বিজয় দিবস। যুদ্ধে লিপ্ত পৃথিবীর বিভিন্ন দেশে শান্তি রক্ষার কাজে জাতিসংঘের শান্তি মিশনে বাংলাদেশের যোগদান এবং অবদান আন্তর্জাতিক পর্যায়ে প্রশংসিত ও গৌরবজনক এক অনন্য দৃষ্টান্ত।
৭. বেশ কয়েক বছর আগে নিউইয়র্কে বাংলাদেশী এক রেস্টুরেন্টে এক বিশাল পোস্টারে - I am GLAD to be banGLADeshi লেখা দেখে আনন্দিত হয়েছি। মনে হয়েছে স্বাধীন এবং বিজয়ী দেশের প্রতিনিধি হয়ে আমরা বিদেশে কতো বিনয়ী আমাদের অনুভূতি প্রকাশ করার জন্যে। সুদূর প্রবাস জীবনে বাংলাদেশের সংবাদে মনের অজান্তে আমরা আনন্দিত, আতঙ্কিত, পুলকিত, শিহরিত, গর্বিত, লজ্জিত, চিন্তিত, শোকাহত…হই, প্রতিদিনের খবরের জন্যে চোখ রাখি অনলাইন পত্রিকায়। আমরা বাংলাদেশে থাকলে আমাদের জীবনের Race Against Time-টা কেমন হতো তার অনুমান করতে আজ আর পারলাম না। তবে আমাদের এই প্রবাস জীবনে উন্নত দেশের লাইফ স্টাইলে Race Against Time-এ আরেকটি সংযোজিত নতুন আইটেম হলো - টেনশন। আমরা কি জানি মনের গহীনে প্রিয় বাংলাদেশের খবরে কিংবা দেশের নিকটতমদের জন্যে আমরা আমাদের মূল্যবান জীবনের কত বছর টেনশনে থাকি?
৮. গণপ্রজাতন্ত্রী বাংলাদেশ সরকারের ২০১৫সালের ক্যালেন্ডারে দেখলাম এ’বছর ২১দিন সরকারী ছুটি ঘোষিত হয়েছে। ছুটির দিনের তালিকায় - আজ ২১ফেব্রুয়ারী ২০১৫ সাল – অঙ্গীকার, গর্ব আর প্রত্যয়ের দিন। বাংলা ভাষা আমাদের শক্তি ও সম্পদ। ১৯৫২সালের ভাষা আন্দোলনের এই মহিমাময় দিনে ভাষাকে রক্ষা করার জন্যে পুরো জাতি এক সত্তায় একতাবদ্ধ হয়েছিলো। ভাষা আন্দোলনের শহীদদের প্রতি শ্রদ্ধা জানিয়ে আজ শপথ নেয়ার দিন। বছরের প্রতিটি কর্ম-দিবসে সঠিক কর্মের মধ্য দিয়ে সবার জন্যে আসুক আলোকিত, নিরাপদ, স্থিতিশীল ভবিষ্যৎ। উদ্বেগের, উৎকণ্ঠার, আতঙ্কের অবসানে সুরের মূর্ছনায় আর সঙ্গীতের প্রশান্তিতে বাংলাদেশের মানুষ আবারো গেয়ে উঠবে - “একটি বাংলাদেশ তুমি জাগ্রত জনতার, তুমি সারা বিশ্বের বিস্ময়, তুমি আমার অহংকার” - প্রবাসী বাংলাদেশীদের প্রত্যাশা।
বাংলাদেশ ইসলামিক সেন্টার অব নিউ সাউথ ওয়েলস (বিআইসি ) এর নির্বাচন সম্পন্ন
গত ১৯ অক্টোবর, ২০১৪ রোজ রবিবার লাকেম্বার পেরি পার্কের অস্ট্রলিয়ান ন্যাশনাল স্পোর্টস ক্লাবে বাংলাদেশ ইসলামিক সেন্টারের (বিআইসি) নির্বাচন সম্পন্ন হয়। নিউ সাউথওয়েলস ল সোসাইটি থেকে সম্পূর্ণ নিরপেক্ষ রিটার্নিং অফিসার ডেভিড স্যাক্স এর তত্বাবধানে সকাল ১০ টা থেকে বিকেল ৫ টা পর্যন্ত এই নির্বাচন পরিচালিত হয়।
বিকেল ৫টার পর যথাযথ নিয়ম অনুযায়ী নির্বাচনের ফলাফল ঘোষণা করেন ডেভিড স্যাক্স। জনাব ইমামুল হক বিআইসি’র সভাপতি ও জনাব আরিফ রহমান সাধারণ সম্পাদক নির্বাচিত হন এবং তাঁরা সহ ১৫ জনের একটি কার্যকরী কমিটির রূপরেখা ঘোষণা করেন রিটার্নিং অফিসার ডেভিড।
উপস্থিত বাংলাদেশী কমিউনিটির গণ্যমান্য ব্যাক্তিবর্গ নির্বাচনের ফলাফল ঘোষণার পর স্বতঃস্ফূর্তভাবে সবার পক্ষ থেকে নব নির্বাচিত কমিটির সুন্দর ভবিষ্যত কামনা করেন এবং এই নব্য গঠিত কমিটির সফলতা কামনা করে দোয়া করেন সারিহিলস মসজিদের সাবেক সভাপতি জনাব হারুন উর রশিদ।
ধারাবাকিক মামলায় জর্জরিত মৃত প্রায় এ সংগঠনটিকে অনাগত দিনগুলোতে সাবলীল গতিতে পরিচালনার উদ্দেশ্যে যেকোন গঠনমূলক পরামর্শ সানন্দে গ্রহণ করতে প্রস্তুত এই নব নির্বাচিত কমিটি। এই আশাবাদ ব্যক্ত করে কমিউনিটির সবার কাছে দোয়া চেয়েছেন বিআইসি’র নব্য গঠিত এই কার্যকরী পরিষদ।
এখন থেকে এই কার্যকরী পরিষদের নিয়মিত কর্মসূচি বিআইসির ওয়েব সাইটের (www.bangladeshislamiccentre.org) মাধ্যমে কমিউনিটির সবাই অবহিত হতে পারবেন।
বাংলাদেশ ইসলামিক সেন্টারের (বিআইসি) প্রচার ও প্রকাশনা সেল থেকে প্রচারিত ও প্রকাশিত। যোগাযোগ :০৪১৩ ৫৮৫ ৯১২, ০৪৩২ ৭৫২ ৪৭৪
Education minister of Bangladesh Nurul Islam Nahid welcomed to Sydney
In an official tour the Education Minister of Bangladesh Mr Nurul Islam Nahid, leading a three-member delegation team, arrived in Australia on September 29, 2014.
The Jalalabad Association of New South Wales Inc. along with the Awami league Australia jointly held a reception in his honour in Sydney, Australia on the 1st of October 2014.
Jalalabad association Vice President (Nanu Miah) and the Organization secretary (Jillur Rahman) welcoming Mr. Nurul Islam Nahid.
The minister discussed about the key issues of Bangladesh in the education sector. He emphasized on improving education and strategies in place to make sure Bangladesh prospers into the twenty first century. He said Australia will offer scholarships to young teachers of Bangladeshi universities to gain training in Australia to improve Bangladeshi education standards to that of the western countries.
Members of Jalalabad Association thanked the minister for joining them for dinner and wished him a safe journey back home.
Nobel Laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus has arrived in Australia this morning to deliver key note speech at Focusing People's Architecture, an international conference and exhibition in Canberra and Sydney organised by Bangladeshi Architects in Australia (BaA)...Details...
Published on: 7-Oct-2014
Bangladeshi Architects in Australia (BaA) Prof Mohammad Yunus is in Australia
Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus has arrived in Australia this morning to deliver key note speech at Focusing People's Architecture, an international conference and exhibition in Canberra and Sydney organised by Bangladeshi Architects in Australia (BaA) in association with the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) NSW. He will also inaugurate a Yunus Centre at the Monash University in Melbourne on 12th of October.
During his visit Professor Yunus will meet with the Federal Minister for Social Services, Parliamentary Secretary for the Minister for Social Services representing the Australian Prime Minister and Senior Australian Government Bureaucrats to share policy advice. He will also meet with senior executives from Australian corporate sectors and leading universities to share his thoughts, philosophies and way forward for his unique concepts on microfinance and social business to assist people to move beyond welfare dependency, to build long term financial and social capability.
Professor Yunus will have exclusive sessions with the Bangladeshi Architects in Australia and the Australian Institute of Architects.
Focusing People's Architecture is a continuation of the ongoing series of seminars and exhibitions in Australia hosted by the BaA and AIA over last five years.
The BaA with the spirit of "thinking outside the traditional mindset" plans to launch two flagship projects during this visit of Professor Yunus: 1. Social Business and Affordable Housing in Bangladesh; and 2. Housing Guide to Complement Cultural Capital in Australia.
For more information please contact Rumana Jamaly, Member, Bangladeshi Architects in Australia (BaA) on firstname.lastname@example.org.
I can feel the excitement is building up inside me. I am sure it is going to be the most exciting moment of the trip. Less than 400 people each year are lucky enough to get this opportunity. Thinking I am one of them, made me very proud. All day we were waiting for that moment to reach our final destination. There was a competition about who can predict the exact time of arrival at 90° N. As sea ice constantly changes its thickness, on top of that arctic fog is another natural phenomenon. The ship’s captain personally took control of the navigation zigzagging through the pack ice. As there is no fixed speed at which an icebreaker can break pack ice, it was very difficult to predict what time the ship will reach North Pole. At 10 a.m. in the morning I predicted we will reach North Pole at 8:30 p.m. But around 3:30 p.m. our ship encountered very thick ice. As a result the captain had to stop the ship for 4 hours to prepare the ship to break through the thicker ice. We passed through the thick ice without any major drama, except this time we felt like we were inside a giant rock crusher. The ship was rolling from side to side and up and down. The dining room was in a real mess. Then our expedition leader announced that we have encountered very thick and hard ice and advised us to hang on to the railing when walking around the ship. Then at 11:45 pm the expedition leader announced that we were very close to the North Pole. We all jumped up from our beds, quickly put on warm clothes and went to the bow deck. It was very windy and cold. With the excitement of reaching the North Pole, the wind and cold didn’t bother us at all. We were anxiously waiting for that wonderful moment.
GPS Reading showing 90 deg North
The exact point of 90° N was in the middle of a pressure ridge. As a result the captain was trying hard to manoeuver the ship to the exact point. But thick ice kept pushing our ship slightly away from the 90°N. To get to the exact point the captain was backing the ship 400/500 m and kept trying to get to the exact 90° North. It was such an exciting moment. After a few more tries finally exactly at 45 minutes past midnight, 25 July 2012 the captain blow the ships loud horn which indicated that we were at 90°N point. We were all waiting on the front deck for this moment. Everybody was yelling and shouting, doing high 5 with the person next to him. What a moment that was, knowing I am one of those few lucky ones who managed to reach 90° N (top of the world).
Bangladeshi flag raised on the North Pole
It was really an unforgettable moment thinking I was now standing on top of the world. When we were celebrating our achievement, our expedition leader gave us a bit of bad news that due to the thickness of the sea ice and unstable nature of the pressure ridge at 90°N, it was too dangerous to walk around there and our ship was not be able to drop anchor there. The captain was going to look for a suitable place to drop anchor around 90° N. We were slightly disappointed but considering the safety of the expedition team members we didn’t mind that at all. The icebreaker carries two 700 tons anchors and the ice has to be thick and strong enough to carry that load. Finally the captain found a suitable ice shelf not very far from 90° N, strong enough to drop the anchor and flat enough so that all the expedition team members can land on the ice, walk around and have a BBQ party. We spent almost all day at 90°N. As tradition goes, the ships crew made a large hole on the ice so that some crazy enough people could go for a skinny dip in the icy cold water of the North Pole. I was tempted to have a go, but since I left Dhaka, my sinus was playing up and I had constant runny nose. Thinking of the future activities I decided not to try the plunge. The captain warned us that according to the measurements, the seawater is extremely cold, so it would not be a good idea to have a skinny dip in that icy cold water. Some of the vital organs of the body might get frozen. So the people, planning to have a skinny dip got the message and decided to wear at least under garments.
Praying before plunging in Icy Cold Water
There were about ten people who did the plunge. Except two persons, no one could stay more than 30 seconds in the water and after that they were pulled out of the water by the ships crews on standby.
In the afternoon around 4 p.m. we set sail south on our way back to Murmansk via Franz Joseph Lands. Before we left the North Pole, our expedition leader dropped a Time Capsule to the bottom of the Arctic Ocean in which we were told to put our business card or any message we liked to put. As I didn’t have my business card, I found my daughter’s business card, wrote my name on the back, and put that in the Time Capsule. Who knows, may be after 500 years someone will recover that time capsule from the bottom of the Arctic Ocean and would know, Nazmul Chowdhury was here on July 25, 2012 and he did not have his business card with him, so he wrote his name on the back of his daughter, Anita Chowdhury’s business card instead.
Putting the business cards in the Time Capsule
On our way back from the North Pole, the expedition leader Jan announced that we were going back through Franz Joseph Lands and, weather permitting, we were trying to transfer everyone on to the Table Top Mountain by helicopter. We would also be able to see some beautiful sea birds nesting on the rock ledge near Franz Joseph Lands.
We were really very excited. When it was my turn to board the helicopter, one of the jokers in the group said “don’t worry Naz, if the chopper crushed in that icy cold water you will survive only 3 minutes, then it will be all over. You wouldn’t feel a thing. I turned around and told him who said I was worried, in fact that was what I wanted – a quick death. He laughed.
Jan was right, the view from the top of the Table Top Mountain was spectacular, absolutely breathtaking. In the evening, our expedition leader organized an auction night to raise money for Polar Research. I decided to bet for three items. The captain’s hat, which he donated to the cause, Navigation chart of our trip to the North Pole and if both failed I would go for the Russian made ceramic polar bear. I missed the captain’s hat for merely €50 Euro. Then I started my bet for the navigation chart. I was doing ok up to 200 Euro. I thought I have reached my limit and now was time sit back and watch. Then a betting war started between two Swedish couples. Both couples were determined to get that navigation chart. Very soon betting reached €10,000 Euro. I was glad I stopped betting after 200 Euros. Expedition leader was a very clever auctioneer, giving both couples free vodka while they were betting. Within10 minutes betting reached €15,000 Euros. We all thought there was no way they would be crazy enough to pay higher than €15,000 Euros for that chart. But after few more vodka they just kept going. The entire room was full of excitement. Everyone was waiting to see who will be the ultimate winner of that chart. The way they were betting it was very hard to predict. When they reached €20,000 Euros everybody thought betting was finished. But surprisingly, both couples wanted to keep going. By that time even I was feeling thirsty. When they reached €25,000 Euros, finally other couple said “ok you can have it”. After that successful auction we all had a free drink that night. €25,000 for an old Navigation Chart? Wow. Next morning I asked Jan (the expedition leader) about those couples. He said they both were millionaires from Sweden and none of them wanted to lose.
After arriving back to Murmansk, we were given the whole morning to go and look around Murmansk city. Some of the group members decided to go for shopping in the city center. I decided to go and see some of the memorials and first nuclear ice breaker Lenin which is now a museum.
Nuclear Powered icebreaker Lenin, The world's first nuclear powered surface ship, now rests in the docks of Murmansk and has been turned into a museum. It also features as a showcase for the Russian nuclear fleet. Ice Breaker Lenin was commissioned in 1959 and after 30 years of service Lenin was de-commissioned in 1989.
Alyosha Statue - known as Alyosha to locals, this 30-meter-tall statue of a soldier overlooks the city and was built in 1974 to commemorate the Soviet defense of the Arctic during World War II.
In the afternoon, we were taken straight back to Murmansk Airport for our flight back to Helsinki. Our Finnair chartered flight arrived exactly on time to pick us up and after another memorable trip of my life, I said good bye to Murmansk and headed towards home via Helsinki and London.
‘For you my friend, anywhere anytime’ Mostafa Abdullah
“কিছু বন্ধু আছে , সৃতি যাদের রবে সৌরভের মত, আর শালা সব ......”
Ranjan Banarjee often reccited this line of a poem of Shakti Chattopadhayya, an well known modern Bengali poet who died about ten years ago, at our lunch time আড্ডা (Gossips) at the ICDDR,B; The International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh. I worked at the ICDDR,B for two six year contracts between 1980 and 1994. Ranjan came to Dhaka from Ottawa with his wife Nipa Banarjee. Nipa Banerjee was posted at Dhaka as the Trade Commissioner for Canada. Ranjan himself was an employee of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) where he worked as a Foreign Service Officer and also as a Trade Commissioner. At the ICCDR,B he joined us as a Consultant in our team. He was a fine company and a great connoisseur of food. He discovered so many exotic eateries in the old Dhaka during his three years of stay, which I could never imagine finding all those in my whole life. Guess where he was discovered in Sydney by some of his ex-colleagues of ICDDR,B. Off course it had to be in a restaurant in Blacktown. His one other favorite punch line was that his grandmother had dipped him in the holy waters of the Ganges when he was very young, and thus been absolved of all of his past, present and future sins. So he was free to try out all of the forbidden pleasures of life including devouring গোমাংস (beef) as much as he wished. However this piece is not about Ranjan. I just could not resist using his line to begin this write-up and hence this brief introduction. I do wish to revisit Ranjan and other good friends at some other later time.
After leaving ICCR,B I started working for PA Consulting Group (New Zealand) from 1995 in their Asian Development Bank (ADB) funded project in Bangladesh as a Senior Systems Consultant. The project aimed at upgrading the Financial Management System of the Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) and the Dhaka Electric Supply Company (DESCO). Mr. Peter Stehli, an Englishman, headed the project. Peter in his early seventies, was a professional accountant who was also a graduate of linguistics from the University of London.
I was Peter’s number two in the project. Any time he drafted a report, a letter or even a note that was to go out of office, he passed it on to me for my review and comment. Being raised in an environment where the boss could not be wrong, even when one is, I always said fine. After a few days Peter asked me how come I always said ‘fine’ to everything that he gave me for review. I had no answer as I could not tell him that not only our work culture discourages pointing mistakes of the boss but could also be seen as disrespect towards the Superior. Peter explained that he himself could not be right one hundred percent, all the time, and my job as his deputy was to double check that. Once that was cleared, I never had any problem telling him wherever corrections or improvements were required.
However, that wasn’t to be the case to be with a senior bureaucrat of the government of Bangladesh, with whom we needed to deal regularly for project activities. This very gentleman was ‘Mr. Know it all’ who took pride in doing all the talking himself and wouldn’t listen much. Besides, his English was rather poor and he had difficulty understanding Peter’s conversations. Most often his responses to Peter had no relevance to the subject matter of the meetings and most encounters ended up in frustrations for us. He used to be always flanked by his deputies in the meetings but none cared to ever point out to him that the boss may not have understood what Peter had said or interpreted in Bangla for him.
In one such routine meeting we urgently needed a resolution to an issue very pertinent to the progress of the project. But the boss’s conversation clearly pointed to the fact he did not understand what Peter had requested of him. As our frustrations grew, I decided to speak to him in Bangla to tell him what actually Peter said. As soon as I did that he looked at me with such blood shot eyes that if it had the flames, it sure would have burnt me to the stake. I knew that my days were done with this honorable officer of the government. We returned from the meeting empty handed without any resolution. On our way back I told Peter what had happened. He kept quit and I wasn’t sure what he had thought of it.
A couple of days before the next scheduled meeting we were advised that I need not attend the meetings any more. Peter Stehli refused to attend the meeting without me and it had to be cancelled. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) requested Peter to patch up with the officer and suggested that he needed to attend the meetings, even if it was without me. Peter refused and offered to resign instead. Fortunately for us the gentleman got transferred to another ministry soon and the business continued as usual with his replacement. The rumor had it that ADB’s long hand had something to do with the transfer. And I learnt my lesson not to ever tell any Bangladeshi boss that he or she may have got it wrong.
Peter resided in Hotel Sheraton for almost first half of his five year tenure in Dhaka. Every morning while leaving for work he used to collect a pocket full of changes in ten taka notes from the cahiers office. The small kids at traffic stops new Peter’s car too well to run for it as soon as it stopped. Peter seemed to know some of these kids even by their names. Peter gave away each of them a ten taka note whenever he could. Our office driver Siraj couldn’t be very happy about it. Siraj often shouted at the kids not to touch the car since they soiled it with their dirty hands. He complained that due to this he needed to wash the car more often than needed. On one such occasion a little girl responded; ‘ক্যান, সাবে আপনেরে ব্যাতন দেয় না’? (What’s your problem? Don’t you get paid for your work’?) Peter wished to know what the girl had said and as I interpreted it, he burst into laughter and gave that girl two additional ten taka notes. He commented ‘given the opportunity she would have made a fine lawyer’.
There were few that came to his office at regular intervals and collected handouts from Peter under various pretexts. Since I sat closest to peter’s office he often called me in to interpret for them. Each one had a new story to tell to beg for more and more money at each of these visits. I could figure out that some of the stories were concocted to pry on Peter’s goodness of heart. I used to get upset at times and at one instance I told Peter if he realized that some of these guys are taking him for a ride with made up stories. He looked at me and smiled ‘Don’t you think I can understand that too? Had I been in any one of their shoes, I would have probably done the same thing or worse’. I asked myself; how come I could not think like him.
Peter left the project and Bangladesh into retirement in the year 2000. Later in 2003 I assumed the role of Head of the project for PA Consulting Group (USA) under USAID funding. At my work I needed someone with critical knowledge of Bangladesh energy sector to draft me a capital requirement analysis and plan for Bangladesh energy sector. I could not think of any better person than Peter for the job. But I wasn’t sure if he would be interested to come back to work for six to eight weeks from his retirement. I apologetically called him and made the request. He replied ‘for you my friend, anywhere anytime’. Peter came to Dhaka and worked for six weeks. He turned up an output which equaled to at least ten to twelve weeks of work.
This was one of my happiest and a proud moment of my professional life. It is not because I had my former boss work for me, but because it was an attempt on my part to show my reverence for him, for the person he had been and for upholding my honor by putting his own job on the line.
Seminar on controversial changes to Racial Discrimination Act
Anisur Rahman: Australian Federal government is thinking about making some controversial changes to the Racial Discrimination Act (1975). Proposed changes will affect sections 18C and 18D of the act. Section 18 C prevents a person from insulting, humiliating, offending or intimidating another person or group on the basis of their race. Section 18 D outlines exemptions to protect freedom of speech for artistic or cultural works. Many people feel that the changes to this act will increase racial vilification based on ethnicity, race, language and religion.
The Indian Telegraph, a community newspaper published from Sydney, held a seminar on the 24th of July 2014 at the Marayong Community Centre (Western Sydney) to discuss the proposed changes with parliamentarians, community leaders and legal experts. There was a five member panel to discuss the issue and answer the questions raised by the community.
From left: Pallavi Sinha (Lawyer), Michelle Rowland Federal MP (Labour), Geoffrey Lee NSW MP (Liberal), John Robertson (Opposition labour leader of NSW) and Aisha Amjad (Lawyer).
The seminar was attended by a sizeable number of Indian and Bangladeshi community members.
Liberal leader Geoffrey Lee asked the community to rest assured because this is only a proposal and it hasn't been submitted to the parliament as a bill. There is a considerable opposition from many quarters and it will never happen.
Opposition labour leader of NSW John Robertson insisted to remain vigilant and asked the community members to contact their local MPs through email to voice their concern until the issue is dead and buried.
Published on: 30-Jul-2014
FAREWELL SPEECH Faruk Kader
Imran tried to imagine what his farewell speech would be, if he was made to walk out of his present job. He has already attended a couple of farewell morning teas rolled out for a number colleagues in his work-place. Only one colleague ended his career on his own term, while the others had to accept redundancy. He has been working as Senior Planning Engineer, Brisbane Water, a leading water retailer of Australia, for more than 3 years and was looking to continue few more before retiring. This has become uncertain with the current downturn in the job market which began when the Liberal Party came into power after their resounding victory in Queensland state parliament election. The ruling Liberal Party has already chopped off thousands job in a bid to return to surplus budget and was determined to do more. Who knew what more job-cut plans they have up in their sleeves!
Job-cuts in Imran’s organisation came in the guise of re-structuring – a common ploy in this country, perhaps anywhere in western world, to cut down the cost of running an organisation behind the smokescreen of drive for efficiency and productivity. Re-structuring or reform of Imran’s organisation began last year, which immediately spawned speculations of the impending job cut. The big bosses at the top started volleying their reform ideas to the hapless employees in a series of presentations. The net result: three posts of General Manager were created at the top hierarchy, while a number of managerial posts abolished and couple of sections merged to downsize the staff numbers, leaving the fate of incumbent position holders in balance. As the road to reform slowly demystified, the fates of the staff not making to this journey were sealed one by one.
The most recent farewell morning tea that Imran attended turned beyond everybody’s imagination something into a funeral ceremony, when the departing staff, a Manager, could not hold back his feeling of utter disappointment and shock, and broke down soon after he began his farewell speech. He hardly spoke few sentences when his swelling emotion spilled out - he started sobbing, his voice quivered and body twisted. He somehow pulled himself together - a virtuoso of these English speaking people, wholeheartedly agreed by Imran, and finished his speech. The uncertainty looming large in the minds of all present made the atmosphere gloomy. Imran met this guy many times in office corridors and exchanged Hi and Hallows – he was all smiles and easy going; now it looks like the heaven has come crashing down on him. His emotional outburst did overwhelm his group of female staff as well and they silently wept – sending out waves of compassion to this poor man’s tortured soul. Later on Imran found out that this guy’s section has been merged with another leaving him high and dry. It was like our Bangladeshi minister without portfolio, with the difference that our minister, although without power, can enjoy all the benefits of a ministerial position. The outgoing manager had served the organisation with distinction for long years, well-settled in life with his family. Now he has been put aside by his organisation and his bitterness about this treatment would be hard for him to swallow.
Since migrating to Australia about a decade back, Imran like many other migrants fell into the vicious cycle of job hunt. The cycle is something like that: You are hired by a rising company, the company enjoys a period of boom – lots of work, then something happens in international economy, contracts dry up for the company and it rings alarm bell for the midlevel personnel like Imran; managers and executives remain untouched because they have a job ahead to steer the company ship out of rough waters and to eke out a new survival strategy. Then one day you are shown the exit door and you start polishing your CV and armed with that start knocking at the recruiting agents and send out desperate calls to your professional network. In the last eight or nine years, Imran had a similar number of jobs, all contract ones – a few of them lasted for about couple of months. Permanent jobs eluded him all along till the one he is doing now. Permanency in job is a misnomer in Australia and elsewhere in western countries. This is the reality here, as one would understand, in stark contrast to Bangladesh, where one once employed in a government job can last till his retirement. Sometime, resignation from a government job in Bangladesh can take months, even years because of bureaucratic bungle.
For about three years after the global financial crisis, Imran has been enjoying a period of relative calm and economic prosperity, offered by the present job towards the end of his career. Even this period had few hiccups, you could say, small shake-ups before a major upheaval. Although he was able to avoid redundancy, he had to enter a new contract with his employer which stripped him of few previous incentives. But the fear of redundancy was not gone; every now and then speculations of redundancy would pop up and shatter the illusion of job security, when someone fed with tip-offs from head office spoke out his concern to his team members. Actually, Imran was very much conscious of this reality and he realized prevention of redundancy was not an option, if he was in the firing line. That’s why he has been preparing himself for this eventuality to make his exit with some dignity.
Since the beginning of this job-cut in Imran’s work-place, Imran regularly shared with Rehana, his wife of about 30 years, what’s happening in his office. Rehana has been by Imran’s side through his tumultuous career and shared both his jubilations of getting a new job and sense of despair when it came to an end. But this was never like before, being engaged in a psychological warfare against the adversity of life lurking in the dark. She didn’t show any visible signs of worry in the past. As Imran poured out today’s gloomy tale of the outgoing manager to Rehana, she was quite moved, while in the back of her mind she experienced a heightened awareness of life’s fragility. Unable to hide her inner turmoil, she almost broke down, “What we are going to do, if it happens to you?” “I have started looking for jobs elsewhere”, Imran replied vaguely, as his attention was drawn to the TV footage of hundreds protesting on the street against the impending job-cuts in public health sector.
The semi-paranoid about the job-cut was affecting Rehana. Almost everyday, when Imran reached home after the day’s work, Rehana would often ask him the question, “What’s latest happening in your office?” Imran tired from office, would work out a smile for her to assure that he was still at bay from redundancy. When they went to bed following the daily rituals of dinner and watching TV programs, a short bed-time conversation would ensue. Imran opened up, “You know, two girls of the customer service were given farewell today.” “What happened to them?” “Their contracts expired and not renewed; poor girls!, now they will have to queue at the Centrelink for the dole and look for jobs, which would not be easy given the dull job market.” Imran felt the concern of Rehana. He knew, if job-cut strike him like a lightning from blue, they would be in the same boat as many others have already been made to be. Imran drew Rehana close to him, “Don’t worry; so far I didn’t hear anything about our section. We are quite busy at the moment and my performance is well-regarded by my boss”. Rehana moaned with sleepy eyes trying to remain awake, “I rather worry for you. You have to remain busy to keep you going and cheerful.” Imran understands what Rehana implied – when they first came to Australia they had a terrible time without job and with Centrelink’s meagre support. And Imran almost became depressed. Only a resurging job market buoyed by the mining boom brought about by the steeply rising Chinese economy came to their rescue. Imran kissed the sleepy eyes of Rehana, then whispered into her ear, “We have come a long way Rehana and we have seen times both good and bad. Even if we have to face bad time, we would see through it together. Let’s not worry now and go to sleep.”
Imran stopped talking about job-cuts in his office after realization of its toll on Rehana. It seemed the tide of first major job-cut in the office has ebbed. Imran didn’t hear any further job-cut in the office. For the time being the atmosphere of uncertainty took a back-seat giving the employees a respite to move on.
The year was drawing to an end and x-mass was knocking at the door. The atmosphere in Imran’s work-place turned pregnant with the staff’s expectation about x-mass celebration and the long holiday. All around the staff radiated happiness and joy and engaged in chatting about their holiday plans. Office work slowed down and plans for x-mass celebration in work place were rolled out well ahead of x-mass day. Plans included x-mass lunch, x-mass morning tea and competition for group-wise x-mass decoration, Secret Santa and Raffle Draw. The Sri Lankan female colleague of Imran’s team put on a decoration with all her team members reaching out for help. The whole office floor decorated with x-mass outfits exuded all around happiness and joy: the uncertainty about job cut all but was erased from the staff’s minds.
On the x-mass eve, Imran and Rehana went to Brisbane city centre to watch x-mass celebration. At the city centre, they merged with the crowd lined in wait for the X-mass party to parade through the city centre. This x-mass parade has been happening for the last two years, sponsored by the fashion retailer giant Myer. First the kids came along dancing and singing x-mass carols and waving to the cheering crowds, followed by teen age boys and girls beating drums - the marching kids and teen age boys and girls put on red and white dress. Then marched the artists, who performed a ballet piece from Nut Cracker Suite, the world famous x-mass ballet. Some of them leaped into the air, some somersaulted in sheer ecstasy. A few paused on their march to offer a selphie snapshot to the more flamboyant members from the watching crowd. In this festive mood, everybody was happy and no distinction could be made about the degree of happiness writ on the faces of crowd. Among the crowd, who knew, there could be jobless ones or people coping through tight budget or even had terminal patients back at home to care about. The joy and sprit of x-mass permeated the hearts of Imran and Rehana. Finally, the carriage of Santa Clouse driven by two deer came hopping along. The Santa waved his hands to the cheering crowd and as it passed by Imran, he was greeted by the Santa by his smiling face with a blinking eye. Imran thought: Did he know this guy masquerading as Santa, being aware that the guy performing as Santa could be a hired one. Many casually work as Santa during x-mass at shopping malls to entertain kids, in the process earning some bucks to feed themselves.
The day before x-mass holiday, Imran received a letter neatly tucked into an official envelope marked, “Confidential” left on his desk. Seeing the letter in Imran’s hand, his team leader Richard joked,“ Your termination letter; may be we are here for another farewell morning tea.” Imran laughed but with a fleeting shade of gloom on his face. Richard came to his cheerful self instantly and patted on Imran’s back saying,” You have in the envelope something to cheer about.” Imran regained his composure and returned his compliment, “I could guess”.
Imran took the letter home and gave it to Rehana, pretending to be sad. Rehana was not sure what to do but she was fooled into believing in something ominous about the envelope after watching Imran’s carefully crafted disappointment on his face. She cried out, “Don’t tell me you have lost your ….!” Imran couldn’t pretend for long – it was against his nature. Finally, he broke into a smile that assured Rehana that it was nothing that sort. Rehana took a long breathe, then without bothering to look at the letter, gingerly put down the envelope on the tea table. Her face brightened up for the moment and then she spoke to Imran almost in a hushed voice, “You know, I have applied for a casual job with Coles and they have invited me to an interview tomorrow. It’s only fair that I give you a hand… “
Published on: 16-Jul-2014
Ramadan Mubarak Mostafa Abdullah
Anas ibn Malik reported: A man said, “O Messenger of Allah, should I tie my camel and trust in Allah, or should I untie her and trust in Allah?” The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Tie her and trust in Allah.”
After my last article ‘The Divine Intervention’ was published in bangla-sydney.com, I came across this hadith of our prophet. I felt that it completely summarized what I intended to say in that article. I passed the hadith on to some of my friends and received some very interesting feedbacks, including some requests for further elaboration on it. This was a tough call for me. Nevertheless, I inferred that I must have had some insights of my own to attempt to write the article in the first place. So I set on to write this elaboration of my own.
May Allah forgive me for my ignorance and whatever I may say which may not be correct.
Among others, one rhetorical question that I faced; ‘If I do my work to the best of my abilities, does it really matter whether I trust in God or not?’ I would think that a straightforward, simple answer would be; if one believes in Allah, it does matter. But if one doesn’t, it would really be up to them. However, I have doubts that such a simple answer would suffice.
Let us consider the situation of a street beggar in the Dhaka city. A beggar must hope or believe that his/her effort is likely to yield something. And with that belief, he reaches out to you when you pass by in your car. He makes his case to everyone he can. Sometimes you grant him his wish, sometimes you don’t. When you do, do you give to everyone that stretches out his or her hand? Most often it is no. Your choice of person to give depends on who appeals to you most; in other words, the one who presents himself as the most deserving.
If the beggar relies solely on his belief but makes no effort, he would most likely die of starvation. By the same token, we must trust Allah while we go about our business to the best of our abilities. We must strive to do our best to present ourselves to be the most deserving. The outcome, however, is not in our hands just as the outcome of the beggar’s efforts is not in his or her hands.
Allah in His infinite magnanimity decides what is best for us, while we see only in the context of what is perceivable by us. We only see what is present before us, Allah sees in totality and decides and acts accordingly. (Ref: Surah Al-Kahf, verses 65 to 82 of the Holy Qur’an).
The truth of these verses hit me hard when the liberation movement for Bangladesh started on the night of 25th March, 1971. Most Bengalese that lived in a neighborhood of Mirpur, where our newly built house once stood, were massacred by the Biharis. We were spared the annihilation as at that time we lived elsewhere. Our house of thin walls and tin roof at Mirpur was completely destroyed in a tornado ten years earlier in 1963.
After our house was destroyed I often heard my father say ‘Nothing happens without a reason. The One above knows it all and He must have had a good reason’. He would say that we human beings can only see what is in front of us and what we can perceive. But Allah sees it in totality and decides accordingly. I believe that Allah in His enormity, for reasons best known to Him, may have had decided long before to save this family of three and hence caused us to leave the property by destroying it.
At the grey old age of 68, most often I am the oldest in Bangladeshi social gatherings (dawaats). This brings upon me a strange responsibility at times. Sometimes, the host requests me to lead a Du’a for some reason or other. First, I have rarely performed such acts in the past and I am hardly ever prepared for it. Most often it turns out to be, on my part, an insincere act.
By terming it ‘insincere’ on my part, I am in no way suggesting that we should not be performing Du’a as often as we do. In fact, one should ideally be in a state of Du’a at all times. Du’a is a privilege that Allah, in his overwhelming kindness has bestowed on us. One ought to be prepared at all times to ask for Allah’s forgiveness with the due fervor and humility that it commands; by appreciating its presence and indispensability in our lives and not as a passing social gesture.
I consider Du’a to be an appeal, an application for mercy and for salvation to Almighty Allah. When we make an application for anything; be it a job, a promotion, a raise or a grant, we put on our best face, best attire, best write up and generally make the best effort we can. We do it in order to earn the pleasure and favor of the one to whom we apply.
Do I contemplate if I am worthy of making an application to Allah? Have I prepared myself at all for standing in front of Him, for Him to find me deserving? I find myself saying no.
What must one do to make himself/herself presentable for application to Allah? Same as one would do for all earthly business matters – only in this case, it is about our salvation and it is the pleasure of Allah that is being sought. There may be a thousand and one opinions among the Ulemas as to the ways in which Allah’s pleasure may be earned. Any number of them could be right or wrong and Allah is the best judge. However, I suppose all the learned scholars may agree on one common denominator; that one has to be a believing Muslim.
But that again poses some serious questions as to the definition of a Muslim.
Following the anti-Ahmadi riots in Lahore, Pakistan in 1953, a public court of inquiry was appointed with Justice Muhammad Munir as President and Justice M.R. Kayani a Member to investigate the cause of disturbance.
The report published in April 1954, stated on page 215: ‘The question, therefore, whether a person is or is not a Muslim will be of fundamental importance, and it was for this reason that we asked most of the leading Ulema to give their definition of a Muslim,……’.
It follows on page 218: ‘Keeping in view the several definitions given by the Ulema, need we make any comment except that no two learned divines are agreed on the fundamental. If we attempt our own definition as each learned divine has done and that definition differs from that given by all others, we unanimously go out of the fold Islam. And if we adopt the definition given by any of the Ulema, we remain Muslim according to the view of that alim but kafir according to the definition of everyone else’. (Source: The Clash of Fundamentalisms by Tariq Ali).
With this in view I again resorted to give myself an everyday worldview of the definition of a Muslim. In our everyday world, we join or become members of groups, clubs, unions, professional networks and so on. As one joins any such entity and declares him/herself to be a member, he/she is obliged and bound by the basic tenets of such an entity. To have the privilege of calling oneself a member one must observe certain minimum obligations of that organisation or the group.
Let us consider the situation of the Bangladesh Army. For that matter it could be the army of any country. To be able to claim to be a member of the regular Bangladesh Armed forces, amongst other things, one must take the oath of allegiance, train to be a soldier , continue to train to improve combatant skills, wear uniform as required and come to the defense of the nation when called for.
During the Liberation War of Bangladesh, a great many freedom fighters fought alongside our regular armed forces. Some of those freedom fighters even exceeded in their bravery, achievement and sacrifices in comparison to the others.
However gallant combatants they were, none of them can claim to be a member of Bangladesh Armed forces unless he or she observes and follows minimum tenets of regular armed forces. By the same token, could anyone who does not follow and observe the basic tenets of Islam claim to be a Muslim?
As we all know these are five basic tenants of Islam: 1. Shahadah: declaring there is no god except God, and Muhammad is God's Messenger 2. Salat: ritual prayer five times a day 3. Sawm: fasting and self-control during the blessed month of Ramadan 4. Zakat: giving 2.5% of one’s savings to the poor and needy 5. Hajj: pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in a lifetime if he/she is able to do
In my opinion, one must be prepared to observe and perform these five basic tenets to be able to claim to be a Muslim. And only then I feel reassured that I may be worthy of acceptance of my Du’as as a Muslim by the Almighty Allah.
Once one has attained these minimum requirements, one ought to improve on it further through studies, devotion and practice in order to be a better Muslim. This is almost similar to the situation of the defense personnel in our analogy. A soldier, after attaining basic requirements, is required to improve on it throughout his life through training and exercises. He is committed to becoming a better soldier.
One may mistake that I am questioning the right of prayer for non-Muslims or of the ones that do not fit my notion of a Muslim. That would be the least of my intentions. On the contrary, I am willing to defend, to the best of my abilities, anyone’s right to prayer as long as it does not interfere with someone else’s.
My premise is: as in any other situation in our everyday life, to be eligible to claim the membership to Islam, one ought to observe and adhere to its basic rules and requirements. I suppose it would be equally true for any other organized religion.
Allah knows best if I am right. May Allah forgive us for our ignorance, mistakes and sins. May He give us the courage to seek the Truth. May the month of Ramadan bring the best out of us. May we refresh our souls by placing limits on ourselves as a way to gain greater personal insights.
Published on: 24-Jun-2014
I have developed a lot of admirations for Mr. Mostafa Abdullah having read his beautiful pieces of short memoirs in recent times. He had been a wonderful addition to the contributors to Bangla-Sydney.com. His memoirs beautifully reconnect present with the past with a positive outlook about the present. His writing is lucid, stylish, elegant and a joy to read. He and his compatriots IT professionals are the first generation of Bangladeshi migrants to Australia. Their life experiences and role in the community, hopefully, would be valued and appreciated by the current and future generations.
- Faruk Kader
Published on: 29-Apr-2014
The Trip Down Under Mostafa Abdullah
The year 1977 was very eventful for me. I resigned from the government service, tied the marital knot and moved to Australia. Once released from the government service and being relieved of the uncertainties of the moment, another kind of uncertainty hit me heard on the face. I was unemployed with no immediate prospect of finding another work. The wedding date was set for June 26 and preparations were on in full swing. I put up a brave face but worried my brains out. I went to see my good friend Kabir at his place of work at the Agrani Bank in Motijheel next to Hotel Purbani. Kabir’s other name is Babu, and a perfect Babu he had been all his life, in his attires and looks. I told him that I had resigned from my job and needed to find some work. He thought I was kidding and ordered for two cups of tea. When I was finally able to convince him that I wasn’t joking, he canceled that order of tea and took me out to lunch at the adjoining restaurant at Hotel Purbani. Over the lunch we explored various possibilities of finding a suitable work but none seemed much promising. Towards the end of the meal Kabir mentioned that he had known someone who had recently migrated to Australia. He suggested that I could explore this possibility. Australia was the last thing on my mind but I thought of giving it a try. After lunch my friend Kabir headed for his office and I walked upstairs in the same building to the Office of the Australian High Commission in Bangladesh.
The Commission’s office in those days was easily accessible as opposed to how it is now, where one has to wait outside on the road for hours, rain or shine, to be called in one after the other. I approached the reception and told her of the reasons for my presence. I was told to wait and after a few minutes a white lady, rather a young girl in her early twenties, led me into a meeting room next to the reception. I told her that I was there to explore the possibilities of migrating to Australia. She enquired of my background and as she found out that I had recently returned from United States being trained on Information Technology, she seemed more receptive. She handed me few application forms and a bunch of booklets about life and prospects in Australia. She suggested that I read the booklets thoroughly before returning the application forms as this could be a major decision on any ones part to resettle in a new country. I kind of felt assured that if I applied, I am likely to be successful. A week passed and my efforts to find some other suitable work yielded no definite hope. I submitted the application the following week. There was no application fee and I thought what have I got to lose. Next few weeks were very hectic with wedding arrangements and my frustrations swelled over not landing any suitable job or seeing any hope for it. Just had it always happened to me; whenever I came across a blind wall, a door opened up for me sooner or later, this time sooner than later. Four weeks after filing the application I received a letter from the High Commission for a formal interview. The same young lady that I met earlier took the interview. There wasn’t much to talk about other than her asking me if I had made up my mind to migrate to Australia, if the application was successful. I said convincingly yes, though back of mind I wasn’t sure as to what I may do. In about next eight weeks time the approval for immigration arrived and I prepared to leave for Sydney in September 1977, leaving my newlywed wife behind in steamy eyes and choked goodbye. She joined me in about six months afterwards.
The entry to Sydney through Mascot streets with its drab looking shops and houses was less than inviting for someone hoping to make a new life in another country. That notion soon changed after being around the city and some of its spectacular land marks. However, later on, all that seemed dwarfed in front of the picturesque suburbs, winding roads that snaked up and down the hills, the beaches and the natural beauties of this land. I was glad that I decided to come here. We arrived on a Monday morning and were received at the airport by Dr. Moklesur Rahman and Alam Bhai. Shahadat Ali accompanied me with his family on the same flight. Dr. Rahman did not know us personally but decided to drive us from the Airport when informed that a set of new Bangladeshis were arriving. Rahman Bhai would do that for any one that came new, put them up in his place, feed them and finally help settle them to be on their own. There were also others that always came forward to help and assist the new arrivals. To name a few, which in no way includes all, were Alamgir Bhai, Salauddin Bhai, Shahidur Rahman Bhai, Jhunu Bhai, Momen Bhuyian Bhai, late Khan Bhai and others. I put up at Alam Bhai’s place in Randwick. Next morning, on his way to work, Alam Bhai took me to a recruiting agent’s office at the Centre Point. The lady at the agency introduced herself as the “story writer” and sat down with me to rewrite the story of my life; my CV. She pointed me to a building at the Kent Street from her glassed window and advised me to go there for a job interview. As I was about to leave she suggested that I be accompanied by one of the girls from the office who would direct me to the building at Kent street. While coming out I noticed that there were many other recruiting agents’ office in the same building. It occurred to me that the Agent might have suspected that on my way out, I may try out some other agency as well. She probably wanted to make sure that I go to their nominated employer without any distraction. It seemed likely because there were more employers than employees in the market during those days. I was interviewed by Arnott’s Biscuits Limited and offered a job of a Programmer on the spot at an annual salary of $10,000. To someone like me who arrived the day before, it seemed like Godsend and I accepted it without any hesitations. The salary seemed adequate in comparison with cost of living in those days. For example I paid only $40 per week for our apartment at Randwick in those days.
Most Bangladeshis lived in Randwick in those days. It started with students coming to the University of New South Wales followed by first wave of few immigrants. For those of us of living in the Eastern Suburb, the thought of going beyond Parramatta seemed like going on to the other side of Australia. From mid eighties, the Bangladeshis started moving to East Lakes, Hillsdale and on to the West. However, there were already few that lived in West and North-West from earlier on. We had no idea where to find Halal meat until about two years later when my mother came to visit us. The only Halal meat shop in this part of the city was at Cleveland Street and an Indian grocery at Bondi. Things like fresh green chili, karalla (bitter gourd) and likes were rare. If anyone spotted any of such things, he or she would call the rest to inform where to rush for it. Thanks to the diverse immigration, otherwise the Aussies wouldn’t have known that there are foods other than burnt meat and boiled potatoes. All most all the fruits, vegetable and fish shops used to be owned by the Greeks in those days. Women in Saree or Shelwar Kamiz were a rare sight, not to talk about anyone in a Hijab. We looked at any colored skinned man or woman eagerly to see if he or she spoke Bangla, if not, at least Hindi or Urdu. Suddenly in 1978 the Eastern suburbs became flooded with colored young boys roaming around on the weekends. A very welcome sight and felt like a breath of fresh air. About 180 boys came from Bangladesh to be trained as Aircraft maintenance engineers with Qantas. We formed an all Bangla cricket club under the stewardship of Alamgir Bhai and played cricket every weekend at the Bondi Oval. It turned out to be a picnic day for the families, cheering the players from the sideline. Today one may find it hard to imagine Alamgir Bhai with the bat in his hand and stepping forward for a regulation cover drive to the fence. The former Planning Minister, the then High Commissioner for Bangladesh in Australia, Air Vice Marshal Khandakar sometimes came from Canberra to be to be with us at the field. There were often few passersby that stood for moments to watch an unusual sight of so many colored guys playing in their midst. On one particular day we noticed a bit larger crowed than usual that gathered around. Later it came to light that one of the boys told an enquiring passerby that the West Indies team was practicing in the field.
There was only one Bangladesh Association, but no Parishads of today. Almost everyone that was actively involved with the Association wished to be its President. We had our usual post and after-dinner sessions of passionate debates about the future and wellbeing of Bangladesh. Apparently not much seem to have changed accept that the community has become much larger with diverse interest and opinion. Along with other mainstream Australian communities Bangladeshis are also now a significant contributing group towards development of this nation. Through the efforts of some researchers, we now know that the first Bengali to set foot in this island continent came some times after 1860 with the Afghan Camel riders that shaped the Australian outback. I think it is time now that we should attempt to put on record our past, struggles and contributions for and in this new land. Unless we start now most of our stories are likely to go into oblivion. We owe it to our oncoming generations to let them know how and where they came from. But more importantly we owe an explanation to them as to what made us to decide, to deprive them of being raised in the land of their forefathers.
Published on: 17-Apr-2014 T20 Bangladesh 2014 Flash Mob, Adelaide - Australia
T20 Bangladesh 2014, Flash MOB - SYDNEY, Australia
T20 Flash Mob by Bangladeshi Students of Darwin University, Australia
Published on: 12-Apr-2014
His Excellency Lt Gen Masud Uddin Chowdhury's Farewell
His Excellency Lt Gen Masud Uddin Chowdhury, the High Commissioner for Bangladesh to Australia will soon be ending his 5 years' diplomatic posting in Canberra, and on current indications he is tentatively scheduled to depart Canberra with his family for Bangladesh in the last week of March 2014. On behalf of the Bangladeshis living in Canberra, a Committee has been formed to bid farewell to HE and family on account of their prolonged, strong and deep association they have had with our community.
The Farewell Committee hereby cordially invites all of you along with your lovely family on the occasion to the Farewell function (dinner).
Date: Saturday 15 March 2014. Time: 6:00pm sharp to 9:30pm Cost: $25 per person Venue: To be confirmed later
We have invited HE and his family and he has kindly accepted our invitation and agreed to come for the function. The presence of one and all along with their family members will be greatly appreciated and acknowledged. We trust this will be the best way to express our sincere gratitude, friendship and appreciation to HE for his valued contributions to our community and to our homeland as her High Commissioner to Australia for the last 5 years.
The Committee earnestly looks forward to your kind participation.
Let us bid a cheerful and memorable 'adieu' to His Excellency and his family.
On behalf of the Farewell Committee:
Zillur Rahman (Co-convener) Borhan Ahmed (Co-convener) Dr Abdul Quadir Dr Shahriyar Wahab
RSVP: Thursday 6 March 2014 (It is extremely crucial for all potential attendees to RSVP by this strict deadline to help determine final attendees’ numbers, assist with timely and effective catering arrangements and avoid any unwarranted disappointment later).
Dr Abdul Quadir: 0402140833; email@example.com Kamrul Ahsan Khan: 0452441952; firstname.lastname@example.org Shafiq Ahmed Rana: 0437371897; email@example.com Syed As-Sayeed: 0401165008; firstname.lastname@example.org Ziaul Hoque Bablu: 0411031942; email@example.com Dr Kamal Ahmed: 0403476190; firstname.lastname@example.org Dr Imran Ahmed: 040423098662; email@example.com Anamul Bhuiyan: 0412090769; firstname.lastname@example.org Dr Shahriyar Wahab: 0413161318; email@example.com Jalaluddin Anis: 0422342970; firstname.lastname@example.org Shamsul Huda: 0434674176; email@example.com
Published on: 4-Mar-2014
An Officer and a Gentleman Mostafa Abdullah
I vaguely remember either reading a book or seeing a movie called “An Officer and a Gentleman”. I do not remember anything of the storyline. However, whenever this particular phrase comes to my mind I have always pictured a ‘complete man’. I am dedicating the following episode of my life to one such person who made a difference in my life.
In my sleep, I heard a loud bang – a very loud one. I found myself on the floor, out of my bed. Few more ground shaking blasts thundered over our house. And then it was quiet. After some time, there was the rumbling of passing vehicles on the Mirpur Road, about 100 yards away from where we lived. We were temporarily living at Kalabagan across Dhanmondi’s road no. 32 at that time.
As we found out shortly afterwards, the early dawn blasts were the attacks on Sheikh Mujib’s residence by a handful of renegade military officers, which killed him and most of his family members except the two daughters. The nation was stunned and shocked. There were also jubilations as well as fears and apprehensions; overall an air of uncertainty and numbness prevailed everywhere.
I was about to leave for USA in a week’s time on an UNDP funded training program though the Census Commission. At that time, I had worked for about two years in the Census Commission located at Shantinagar, across the Shantinagar Bazar. I was the youngest of the officers at the Commission, compared to the three other Assistant Commissioners who were of my equivalent rank and position. My selection for the training program wasn’t viewed very favorably across the office and efforts underwent to make the situation otherwise. The Head of the Commission – the Chief Census Commissioner Mr. Kazi Bahauddin Ahmed thought I was the right person. And here I was, getting ready to leave. At that moment, no one knew what was going to happen in the country next, and I worried if I could ever make that trip.
After about two days the situation calmed a little bit and I went to the office, mainly to find out if I could still go. There were not very many people in the office and I sought to see the Chief Census Commissioner Mr. Ahmed. I wanted to know if I could still go. The answer was a clear “no”. He explained that as there was no government in the country then and everything was supposed to be in a status quo. Until the situation stabilized and an appropriate government authority was in place, he could not give a sanction to my departure. In fact, he thought he should be barring me from leaving the country.
I sat there stunned, dumbfounded seeing my hopes of training in USA and consequently, of a brighter future vanish – being taken away from me. I thought of pleading to him to reconsider, but nothing came out of me. He looked straight into my eyes for some time and then spoke: “Nobody will gain much if you do not go out for this training. However, if you are able to return home with the training, both the country and you are expected to be winners”. He then softly said that officially he was unable to sanction my going away under the circumstances. However, if I hadn’t seen him, he wouldn’t have known whether or not I had left the country in the meanwhile.
He suggested that I leave the office quietly and not to mention to any one that I had seen him. He left it on me to decide my next move and with a smile said that he believed whatever decision I took, it was unlikely to cause any major upset for the government or the country. I left for USA on the first available flight out of Dhaka the following week. Mr. Ahmed supposedly did not know anything about my departure, and I committed no illegality as I had the Government order in my hand to leave for the training.
When I returned from USA after about a year or so, Mr. Ahmed was probably retired from his position and I was to join another department, this time the Bureau of Statistics. I often thought of trying to meet him and tell him about the break in life he gave me. Somehow it did not happen until one day when per chance I came across him at the Gulshan 1 Shopping centre. I approached him and introduced myself. I told him how grateful I have been for the break he gave me and how I have fared so far because of that.
I also told him how happy I was being able to see him and tell him about the impact of his act of generosity towards me. I told him that I had feared that I would never get the opportunity to meet him to express my gratitude for what he had done. He gave a hearty laugh and said: “You must have thought that the old man may have gone to the heavens by now”. He most graciously said that I got what I deserved. I often wonder if there would ever be such an Officer and a fine Gentleman in the Bangladeshi bureaucracy.
Most others, with the exceptional few, would have barred me from leaving for the training. He did not. He, I suppose, stepped out of the narrow realm of Government rules and regulations and decided to opt for the broader good of an individual and consequently of society as a whole. I believe he was the one who believed in pushing others up as opposed to many who would drag others down for the satisfaction of seeing themselves ahead. I wish him the best here and hereafter.
Throughout my life I have had breaks such as this one from numerous places and people. I often wondered; are these mere coincidences that I am in the right place or with the right person at the right time? Or, are these all engineered from somewhere or by someone. I have sought for an answer but been afraid to tread too far. I fear that I may be lost in a terrain of which I am not a worthy traveler. So I have opted to take a simpler path; the path that lets me believe that these are all Divine Interventions.
As for the Devine Interventions, I wish to talk more about it soon.
NB: Fortunately I was able see Mr. Bahauddin Ahmed during my recent trip to Bangladesh. He is very sick and frail, completely bedridden. I gathered from his silent motions that he was pleased to see me. May Allah grant him what He considers best.
Published on: 15-Jan-2014
Raised in Australia, Amit Khan is a young economist of Bangladeshi background working in the banking sector in Sydney. After his recent trip to Bangladesh he wrote this insightful article to highlight Bangladesh's positive achievements over the last two decades which often go unnoticed. - Anisur Rahman Published on: 9-Jul-2013
I would like to take the opportunity to congratulate you on your 10th birthday. I am sure, you, as a web magazine, certainly have become a part of many non-resident Bangladeshi’s online friend. I would like to congratulate your author Anis bhai who has worked so hard for the community for the last 10 years. Very well done. Be there with us.
Published on: 18-Mar-2013
Heartiest congratulations on the 10th anniversary of BANGLA-SYDNEY. Thank you very much for your tireless effort to run the website uninterrupted for last 10 years. Unbiased reporting and presentation style have made Bangla-Sydney so popular among the Bangladeshi Australians. Keep it up. Long live BANGLA - SYDNEY.
Abdul Haq Hassallgrove
Published on: 13-Mar-2013
Congratulations! For last five years we have read and thoroughly enjoyed the website. It is very informative and extremely enjoyable. It is a source to know about the Bangladeshi community in Sydney.
We hope bangla-sydney will continue to be our favourite website for the time to come.
Many happy returns.
Mushtaq & Sufia Khan Director and Financial Advisor Safe Insure Pty Ltd
Published on: 12-Mar-2013
Published on: 24-Jan-2013 Accommodation Wanted Bangladeshi PhD student with wife and a kid (1 year 10 months), moving to Sydney from Dhaka in Feb 2013. Looking for suitable accommodation near UNSW or surrounding areas. Accommodation required from 27-Feb-2013. Please write with details to Kamrul: firstname.lastname@example.org or to email@example.com. Or just give me a call +880-1811146574. Published on: 17-Jan-2013
Many thanks for your recent appeal to help Murad, from Sydney, NSW.
I found your invitation to be a clear and responsible message to the community for an urgent cause. Your appeal was sensitive and motivating too. I particularly appreciate your easy-to- follow "Steps to be a Donor". Hopefully that will be of good educational value, for many of us.
May Allah bless Murad and his family, his parents and carers and give them strenth to face the challenge.
Thanks for maintaining such an useful web site for probashi Bangladeshis in Australia and for others too.
Dr. Maqsud Omar NSW, Australia.
Published on: 1-Jan-2013 Female Vocalist Needed I am looking for a female vocal who enjoys to perform duet Bangla songs specially Bangladeshi songs of Nancy, Kona, or songs of the latest or old Kolkata Movies. Please note that the tone and scale synchronising is very important therefore some time to rehearse and voice recording is required. This will be organised by discussion. No cost is involved for audio recording. If you are serious about music and prefer to perform duet please email Rubai Huda < firstname.lastname@example.org > or call 0469 861 307 Published on: 25-Oct-2012 Richard Branson Speakes in Defence of Grameen Bank "Grameen Bank is an inspiration. Don’t let Bangladeshi politicians meddle with it" - Sent by Sirajus Salekin Published on: 7-Oct-2012 Origin of the rice variety Kasalath A very important paper was published in Nature magazine describing a line of Bangladeshi rice, Kasalath, a very important line in Palnt Biology, simply as Indian. I protested everywhere and finally this admission from IRRI corrects the error - Dr Abed Chaudhury IRRI Website
Published on: 26-Sep-2012 কাউন্সিল নির্বাচনে বাংলাদেশী প্রতিনিধিত্ব এ বছর অনুষ্ঠিতব্য সিডনির বিভিন্ন সিটি কাউন্সিল নির্বাচনে বেশ কয়েক জন বাংলাদেশী কাউন্সিলর পদের জন্য প্রতিদ্বন্দ্বিতা করবেন। প্যারাম্যাটা থেকে প্রবীর মৈত্র ও ড. শাহাদাত চৌধুরী এবং হলরয়েড কাউন্সিল থেকে সুমন সাহা। এরা সবাই অস্ট্রেলিয়ান লেবার পার্টির মনোনীত প্রার্থী। এ ছাড়াও ক্যাম্বেল্টাউন কাউন্সিল নির্বাচনে স্বতন্ত্র প্রার্থী হিসেবে দাঁড়াচ্ছেন আবুল সরকার। অস্ট্রেলিয়ার রাজনীতিতে বাংলাদেশীদের অংশগ্রহণ অত্যন্ত আশাব্যঞ্জক ঘটনা। নির্বাচনী প্রচার শুরু উপলক্ষে সুমন সাহা গত শনিবার (২রা জুন ২০১২) প্যারাম্যাটা লেক রিজার্ভে একটি বারবেকিউর আয়োজন করেছিলেন। বৃষ্টি সত্ত্বেও প্যারাম্যাটা কাউন্সিল, অস্ট্রেলিয়ান লেবার পার্টি এবং কমিঊনিটির বেশ কিছু লোকজন অনুষ্ঠানে উপস্থিত ছিলেন। সুমন সাহা ড. শাহাদাত চৌধুরী
বাংলা ফন্ট দেখতে সুন্দর না লাগলে এই লিঙ্ক থেকে SolaimanLipi ডাউনলোড করে নিন Link
Published on: 5-Jun-2012
Achievements of two Bangladeshi Young Cricketers in Sydney Grade Cricket... Details... Photos... Published on: 27-Jun-2012 Bangladeshi Broadsheet New Bangladeshi community website launched in Melbourne Published on: 14-Jun-2012 Courtesy of Prothom Alo Published on: 4-Jun-2012 Munni's Operation Date: 28th May, 2012 I am IMRAN, Munni's husband. We really are overwhelmed to have such tangible support from the Bangladeshi community. We’ve realized what humanity is... details...
Published on: 25-May-2012 Munni`s Operation Date: 28th May, 2012
I am IMRAN, Munni`s husband. We really are overwhelmed to have such tangible support from the Bangladeshi community. We’ve realized what humanity is.
We visited to Prof. Dr. BC McCaughan (Thoracic Surgeon) with new CT scan report on 18th May, 2012. He suggested another Hepatobiliary and Liver Transplant Surgeon named Dr. Charbel Sandroussi during operation as the tumour compressed Munni’s liver also.
We went to Dr. Sandroussi on 22nd May, 2012 and he told us that some portion of her liver, few portions of stomach and abdomen wall muscle need to be removed along with major portion of her left lung. However, the good news is that the tumour is removable. It is a major operation. Will take a 6-8 hours or more.
Operation date has been fixed on 28th May, 2012 at the Royal Prince Alfred (RPA) Hospital, Sydney. During her staying in hospital, my daughter, Rayya will be looked after by me and or neighbours in Ingleburn.
Please pray for Munni.
MD. IMRAN KABIR PhD Student
Published on: 25-May-2012 Big thank you for 8 Notes from Children`s Hospital Proceeds ($1835.00) of a fund raising concert held on 29-Oct-2011 by 8 Notes, a Bangladeshi Band in Sydney, has been donated to Westmead Children`s Hospital. Certificate Letter Receipt Published on: 29-Dec-2011 Bangladeshi Man Dead in a Car Crash Shah Md Touhid Uddin of Perth had a fatal car accident near Gingin (90 Km north of Perth) in Western Australia on 17-Nov-2011. He was travelling to Geraldton with his wife and 14 month old daughter. Around 8 pm his car was hit by a Holden Commodore. Touhid died instantly. His wife and daughter were airlifted to Perth. They were admitted in an intensive care unit. They have been released today. Touhid`s Namaz-e-Janaza was held on Saturday the 26th. Post mortem report is expected tomorrow. Police is investigating the cause of the accident. Touhid graduated from BUET in 1996. He came to Perth in 2008. Bangladeshi community in Perth has come forward to help and raised around $30,000 for the family - Mushtaq Khan Published on: 28-Nov-2011
Tanveer Ahmed has just published his first book “The Exotic Rissole” which explores growing up in Australia from his Bangladeshi background. Former Premier of NSW Bob Carr launched the book in Sydney last week.
Canberra Event Melbourne Event Published on: 7-Oct-2011 Burwood Library presents Shafeen Mustaq FREE TALK AT BURWOOD LIBRARY Shafeen Mustaq, author of Financial empowerment of women in Bangladesh through microcredit. The book investigates the impact of microcredit, through the lending practices of Grameen Bank and others, on the empowerment of rural Bangladeshi women. Published on: 7-Sep-2011 Great effort by a handfull of Bangladeshis in Darwin to support a school in Chorfashion, Bhola - Anisur Rahman
Published on: 6-Jul-2011 Dr. Maqsud Omar Wrote:
Many thanks for publishing such an intelligent, thought-provoking article.
I read online Bangla magazines, published in Sydney. I may have missed some articles in the past, written on Prof. Yunus too.
I will be very keen to know what was the reaction of local Bangladeshis to Prof Yunus issue.
Dr. Maqsud Omar Woodcroft
Published on: 6-Jun-2011 Anayet Luhit Wrote:
Thanks very much for extraordinary article, I have noticed that other functions Bangladeshi breach the manner, They do not want to show ethics just want to use the power for example i am leader of this group. Once at Martin Place i was in the line to take out money from ATM and behind me one of the NSW powerful politician was waiting and i offered him to go first but he did not go. Look at them and at look us!!!
I have seen some Bangladeshi they introduce themselves as a Indian even though they were not born here. I do not understand what makes them happy if they say i am Indian....
One foreigner told me one day i really like Bangladeshi but one thing i do not like so i said what? He mentions, i have seen Bangladeshi when they see any other Bangladeshi they show attitude and smartness and do not want to talk to each other.
We really need to talk about this kind of issues.
Published on: 3-Jun-2011 Hasneen Jahan Wrote:
I have just read your article on Bangla-Sydney. I agree with your opinion. I am not an Australian citizen. I came here for study and saw a huge bangali community. But when I see the culture and mentality of some Bangladeshis I feel disappointed. There is huge lack of proper etiquettes. I heard from some people that Bangladeshi people can`t drink, thats why they can`t adjust or build communication with the mainstream society. But I think this is a lame excuse. The problem is they don`t know how to show the manners in workplace and cultural functions. Drinking is not an essential for this. Obviously I am not talking about all Bangldeshis here. There are some delicate persons as well. But majroty represents the society! Thanks for this article.
Hasneen Jahan PhD Candidate
Published on: 3-Jun-2011 Begum Shahida Wrote:
I would like to thank you for this exceptional analytical article. I hundred percent agree with you and your expression that you made in this article. We know most of our expatriate Bangladeshis are really not familiar with correct table manner and ignorant of everyday social etiquette. It really hurts me when I overhear other communities criticizing our way of life and our social culture. I encourage you to keep writing in this manner hoping it will promote change we needed. (Edited)
Regards, Begum Shahida MANLY
Published on: 1-Jun-2011 Zakir Hossen Wrote:
I completely understand your situation and feel sorry for you and other civilised bystanders. I personally hate queue jumpers and love to speak on their face to embarrass as much as possible which help others and help him in future.
I feel similarly ashamed when I see Bangladeshi young boys disturbing girls on the train and loudly speaking on the way back home from Uni or college.
I wonder what better can we expect from a nation who had life long practice of fighing for everything from dawn to dask, be it in the table of food, be it on the traffic of roads, be it in the queue of banks, be it in the competition for jobs.
All I can suggest is Bangladesh Educational Boards should introduce a manners and etiquettes course in childhood classes which might save us from embarrasments before other nationals.
Zakir Hossen KOGARAH
Published on: 1-Jun-2011 Launching of Australia's Biggest Morning Tea 2011 Bangladeshi community was invited to take part in the official launching of Australia`s Biggest Morning Tea held on 13-Apr-2011 at Martin Place, Sydney...Video... Published on: 22-Apr-2011 A Bangladeshi-American Student`s Experience in Rajshahi Chaos. It rang out in the streets of Rajshahi. It swept by on overloaded, careening buses on their way south to the capital, Dhaka, from far-north Rangpur. It snaked through the marketplaces, tripping up customers searching for their favorite sabjiwallah, or vegetable vendor. Like every other corner of the hustling, bustling, overcrowded little South Asian nation of Bangladesh, this typical, everyday sense of mild chaos did not spare the Rajshahi Cancer Hospital and Research Center...Details... Sent by Mushtaq Khan Published on: 3-Apr-2011 Bangladeshi Dentists` Get-together An informal get-together of Bangladeshi dentists in Australia was arranged by Dr. Nahid Sayma at her residence (Stanhope Gardens, Sydney) on 13-Mar-2011. Around 30 Bangladeshi dentists attended the program. The primary agenda of the meeting was to establish an organisation of the Bangladeshi dentists in Australia. The name of the group was elected to be "Bangladeshi Dentists` Forum" in the presence of Dr. Nahid Sayma, Dr. Abdul Awal and Dr. Firoz Iqbal. Photo... Published on: 3-Apr-2011
Get-together of Bangladeshi dentists in Australia at Dr. Nahid Sayma`s residence at Stanhope Gardens, Sydney (13-Mar-2011)
Published on: 3-Apr-2011
Published on: 19-Jan-2011 Accomodation Needed Recently I`ve got Australian PR and I must enter Australia before 17-Mar- 2011. I`m an Engineer and my wife is a Doctor. We have two daughters, 4 months and 6 years. We would like to stay in Sydney for two weeks then return to Bangladesh. I prefer homestay with Bangladeshi family. We need just one bed room and a shared kitchen. I shall pay for that. I`m planning to come to Sydney on 12-Feb-2011 and return to BD on 25-Feb-2011. We`ll also visit Melbourne from 18 to 21 February 2011. If you have a spare room please contact: Md Ariful Islam (Executive Engineer, Dhaka WASA, Tel: 880-1715006326)
Published on: 10-Jan-2011 In Memory of late Faruque Ahmed
The committee and the members of Jalalabad Association of NSW inc. announces for general information that a memorial meeting will be held this Sunday to discuss the life and achievements of late Faruque Ahmed who passed away on the 24 December, 2010. Besides the members of the association the meeting is expected to attract the attendance of the wider Bangladeshi community, his colleagues and associates from the Taxi industry of Sydney and personalities from state politics. Please be there if you wish to share the spirit of the occasion. At the end there will be a Du`a offered for his salvation and eternal peace. The details of the meeting are as follows:
Date: Sunday, the 9th January, 2011 Place: St. Peters Town Hall, 39 Unwin Bridge Road, Sydenham Time: 4 pm
Fakhruddin Ahmed Chowdhury On behalf of Jalalabad Association of NSW inc.
Published on: 6-Jan-2011 Faruque Ahmed Passed Away! With heavy heart and great shock we announce the sad passing away of Faruque Ahmed, a prominent Bangladeshi living in Sydney. He was the secretary of Taxi Council of NSW, a very prominent personality and well known in the Taxi industry of Sydney. He died as a result of a massive heart attack on last Friday morning. His namaz-e-janaza will be held in Lakemba mosque after Maghreb prayer on Tuesday (28-Dec-2010). After Asr (5pm) prayer on that day the body will be available for viewing. The body will be sent to Bangladesh for burial on Wednesday. At the time of his death Faruque was 51 years of age and he was never married- Fakhruddin Ahmed Chowdhury Published on: 26-Dec-2010 BDeshTV Launched BDeshTV, a Texas (USA) based media company, started its journey in 2010. It has developed an online video infrastructure, OVI+ (TM, patent pending), and a first ever Non-Resident Bangladeshi (NRB) centric online TV. BDeshTV.com (powered by OVI+) will offer 24-hour free online Bangla TV channels and on-demand videos ...Watch it now... Published on: 21-Dec-2010
In Sydney, we, Bangladeshis, organize various seminars and discussions, usually on political issues. How often, we ask ourselves ``who have created a ghetto out of Dhaka?`` Nazmul has taken a historic step to open our eyes, so that we can clearly see the destructive changes that took place in Dhaka in recent years.
What Nazmul concludes may not happen overnight, but he has exposed the weaknesses in the planning and development process. My discussions with Bangladeshi engineers and architests in Sydney have been fascinating! Almost none of them can see any problem with the ``remarkable`` job done by the town planners and builders in Dhaka!
Have we ever asked for accountability from the bunch of planners, officials, developers, politicians who were involved in ``unlawful and unsustainable planning`` for years and made millions out of these policies?
It is time for Bangladeshi community in Sydney to condemn the bad planning and development in Dhaka.
We might invite Nazmul and others to re-educate us through seminars and workshops about the penalty we will pay for creating a messy capital in Bangladesh.
Thanks Nazmul for well-written articles on ``Bubble-Burst`` in Dhaka.
Dr. Maqsud Omar email@example.com Sydney.
Published on: 1-Dec-2010 First Bangladeshi-American Elected to US Congress Voters in the state of Michigan have elected the first Bangladeshi-American ever to represent them in the U.S. Congress...Details... Sent by Mushtaq Khan Published on: 17-Nov-2010 Share Accomodation Available Large room in Granville area with built in wardrobe, TV, air-conditioning, gas cooking & hot water. Separate bill for electricity, gas and internet. Convenient transport, shop and amenities, car space. Bangladeshi couple only. Please contact: 98853099 / 0423276297 Published on: 8-Nov-2010
Dear Anisur Vai,
I liked the writing of Mr. Nazmul Ahsan Sheikh. Currently I have been living in Canada for last 6 + years. When I landed here, I never could think this country is going to be my country. Always I had a dream to go back to Bangladesh and eat Bangladeshi food and stay with my relatives and friends. After struggling for 5+ years now I have started to think that I should have an accommodation in Dhaka. I have no one in Dhaka where I could stay for couple of days to do the administration! Being a woman and two daughter’s mother could never think to live in a hotel!
What an immaculate topics he presented in your publication! I have a heart burning for not being able to invest the savings to Bangladesh and pain to think the money to invest here in Canada. We migrate to different country to get ensured of Onno, Bostro, and Basosthan. But what a game! In my own country I can not afford to buy accommodation whereas with the same money in Canada I can buy two apartments! I really liked your publication with more other topics like “Protiti, Borshoboron , Mita Haque ebong Amra.” Valo thaken apni, abong sofol hok apner e prochesta ! Onek onek shuvokamona roilo!
Published on: 18-Oct-2010 Share Accomodation Available Large room with built in wardrobe, gas cooking, hot water, TV and new air-conditioning. Granville area. Rent excluding bills (electricity, gas & internet). Close to transport, shops and amenities. Car space available. Bangladeshi couples only. Contact Md. Nazrul: 9885 3099, 0423 276 297, 0425 267 480
Thanks for your recent article on Grameencall. I am a happy customer of Grameencall. It is so pleasing to see such a company with Bangladeshi-Australian owner, who are offering an excellent product, with clear accounting system, good-quality connection and absence of unethical practices, often seen while using various phonecards.
Hope Grameencall executives will maintain a satisfactory quality control system.
Dr. Maqsud Omar Woodcroft, NSW.
Published on: 2-Aug-2010 Nurjahan Chowdhury Passed Away! Mrs Nurjahan Yasmin Chowdhury (wife of Mr Ruhul Huqq Chowdhury of Hassalgrove) passed away today (26-Jul-2010) around 1:30 pm at the palliative care unit of Mount Druitt Hospital in Western Sydney (Inna Lillahi Wa Inna Ilaihi Rajiun). She has been suffering from Ovarian Cancer for last 3 years. A very kind and friendly person Mrs Chowdhury will be missed by the Bangladeshi community in Sydney. She is survived by her two sons (Abdullah, Rahel) and one daughter (Rubaiyat). We pray for her departed soul and express our heartfelt condolences to all the members of her bereaved family. Her burial will take place at the Riverstone Cemetery tomorrow (27-Jul-2010) following Namaj-e-Janaza at the Auburn Gallipoli Mosque (Turkish Mosque) at 12 pm after Zuhr prayer. Published on: 26-Jul-2010 Notice to All Bangladeshi Medical Doctors The convening committee of Bangladesh Medical Society of NSW is organizing a day long family program at the Waterview Restaurant, Bicentennial Park, Homebush, NSW on 1-Aug-2010 (Sunday) from 10am to 5pm. Events will include scientific seminar, five star lunch, general meeting, afternoon tea and election of an Executive Board for 2010/2011. There are beautiful playgrounds for kids to enjoy outdoor activities. Catering cost for the event is $25 per adult but only $50 for the whole family. Please confirm your interest by emailing any of these persons: Email addresses
Published on: 7-Jul-2010 Notice to All Bangladeshi Medical Doctors
List of email addresses:
Dr. Faizur Reza Emon
Dr. Faruque Riffat
Dr.M Shareef ud Dowla
Published on: 7-Jul-2010 Kristy will perform in Darwin
“Kristy” is the first Bangladeshi musical band in Sydney. They have been performing almost in every Bangladeshi festival each year. Their performances are very professional and enjoyable.
Kristy is heading for Darwin soon to perform in “Bangladesh Cultural Night 2010”. This show is organised by Bangladesh Association in Darwin. First concert will be held on 10th July 2010 at the Darwin Entertainment Centre. There will be a second show on 11th July.
This is not the first time Kristy performs outside Sydney. They have already performed in Melbourne and Canberra. Kristy has a very strong line-up in their band. Current line-up: Drum - Sanjoy, Keyboard - Shoeab, Base Guitar - Emon, Lead Guitar - Tapon/Mitul and Vocal - Shusantu/Shuvo.
From left: Shusantu, Sanjoy, Tapon and Shoeab
Published on: 6-Jul-2010 $8012.50 raised for the NSW Cancer Council Bangladeshi community in Blacktown, Lakemba and Glenfield area held their annual fund raising (breakfast) program on 9th, 23rd and 30th of May 2010. A total of $8012.50 was raised in three programs. Entire amount has been donated to the Cancer Council NSW on behalf of the Bangladeshi community.
Published on: 20-May-2010 Microcredit, the Middleman and the Modern woman Shafeen Mustaq
Women have traditionally been the object of orthodox ideas of representation and absorbed these into their ways of being. Bangladeshi women traditionally brought up with conventional religious, gender and class instruction develop ingrained ideas of how to be conservative in order to be socially acceptable. Through the injection of micro-credit and income generation, this condition has gradually been changing in villages across Bangladesh through a process of adapting to a new role in society.
Bangladesh's economy has grown by a steady 6% a year in recent years, and the World Bank reported that the percentage of Bangladeshi people living on less than US$1 a day has been reduced to 40% from 49% (latest figure as at 2005). In June 2009, I travelled to Bangladesh to conduct research interviews for my thesis on the effects of microcredit on women’s empowerment. I spoke to women who had lived below the poverty line as well as their husbands, several male borrowers and the employees of the microcredit intuitions. The women were aged 23-64 and had been engaged in a microcredit loan with Grameen, Bangladesh Rural Agriculture Centre (BRAC), Islami Bank or the NGO Proshika from 1-25 years.
The women I interviewed spoke openly regarding their experience with microcredit. Their testimonies confirm that they experienced sustained socio-cultural and economic empowerment as a result of involvement in microcredit schemes. Borrowers said they were motivated to apply for a microcredit loan due to the encouragement from bank workers and the success of other women. Borrower participation was based on similar factors: minimal skills, a need to contribute to the household income and self improvement. The women agreed to the conditions set by lending institutions such as Grameen and BRAC and took on new tasks which developed their skill set to reflect their new status as women with greater empowerment, agency and financial input into their family.
The women acknowledged that gender and class are factors in play within a society that shapes them and how they interact. Bank workers elucidated that in addition to the women, they themselves were led to conform to the archaic ideologies in society through religious, class and gender related hegemony. The common woman was pressured into accepting political or cultural motives for religiousness and absorbing it into her way of being and hence restricted from achieving empowerment and realising her potential.
Employees of microcredit institutions affirmed that even if women recognised they were being dictated to, they were unable to alter the status quo. Now, due to a sustained injection of microcredit along with cultural education women have the confidence to assume economic and social standing. A woman’s participation in the economic arena allows her to acquire cultural and economic experience and develop through interactions in the workplace.
As a result existing familial and social relationships are reshaped due to new found confidence, interpersonal skills and the new role of income earner which commands a different kind of respect to that of mother and housewife. Women who were previously only a daughter, wife or mother, now knew how to read and write, little things such as having their own loan books afforded them a sense of control which aided their empowerment.
All those interviewed recounted the strong opposition that microcredit institutions and their workers first met with in villages. Women involved in producing a cultural capital through microcredit loans by moving outside the home were seen as rebels as a Bangladeshi woman’s place is traditionally at home. Her entry into the economic field changed the dynamics and gender divisions which dictated society. Consequently, a women’s empowerment is limited by the religious, class and gender boundaries placed on them and affects the degree of change or empowerment experienced by the women.
The results of the interviews indicated that women engaged in microcredit loans from lending institutions benefit directly from their sustained interaction with the institution, co-workers and the work they do. Women reported higher verbal proficiency, the ability to write their names, a boost in self confidence and independence. The women also felt motivated to further their skill set or widen their sources of income generation through further loans in order to benefit from a further injection of primitive capital in light of the increased autonomy, agency and respect they received as a result of their financial contribution to their households.
While the microcredit schemes of Grameen, BRAC and other microcredit institutions all set their own conditions (not all of which are beneficial for the client), microcredit has provided village women in Bangladesh the opportunity to gain communication and interpersonal skills, independence and a position of authority within the family environment. It has motivated them to grow and develop skills which allow them to proceed onto skilled labour and open up new avenues of opportunity.
Published on: 7-May-2010 Bangla Loko Mela 2010 Shafeen Mustaq The Bangladeshi Australian Welfare Association (BAWS) hosted a mela (cultural fair) at Seddon Park in Glenfield on Saturday 27 March 2010. The event was a well organised and fun filled fare for families and friends of all cultural backgrounds...Details...
Published on: 12-Apr-2010 Bangla Loko Mela 2010
Shafeen Mustaq: The Bangladeshi Australian Welfare Association (BAWS) hosted a mela (cultural fair) at Seddon Park in Glenfield on Saturday 27 March 2010. The event was a well organised and fun filled fare for families and friends of all cultural backgrounds.
The mela started a little past noon and was slow to pick up due to the afternoon heat. Undeterred the members of parliament, the Mayor of Campbelltown, Aaron Rule, and several other community representatives gave short speeches to the crowds encouraging the diverse and rich cultural experience and wealth of wisdom and experience that the Bengali community adds to the society. There was also a speech regarding the new community watch initiative which aimed to address the growing violence and theft in the area. The participation and approval of the local community members as well as the announcement of such an initiative showed that Bengalis in the Campbelltown area were catalysing change in their uptake of and participation in activities that enhanced community welfare. As the evening became cooler everyone came out in their finest to listen to the band, the speeches and watch the amazing dancing and singing performances by local talent.
There were rides for the kids, clothing and jewellery stalls, Mendhi and book stalls and of course food stalls. The wonderful aromas of a wide variety of food wafted through the field carried by a soft wind that caressed the curious visitor and assailed them with a whiff which made mouths water. From satay sticks to samosas, Dhal puris to jhal muri, from pan to pani puri and tandoori to haleem, there was no end to the wide array of possibilities for ones palette. Banoful sweets also had a stall which would especially excite the sweet tooths out there with rasgullas and chom choms designed delectably on display.
The mela was a huge success and a hit with families, friends and neighbours, many from non Bengali backgrounds who came out of curiosity and left with a better understanding of Bangladeshi culture and traditions and of course a taste of our unique cuisine. It integrated items of interest to the young and old, the Bengali and the non-bengali and provided them with an opportunity to interact and experience a cohesive and friendly environment. Congratulations to the BAWS for such a wonderfully organised and executed event which allows us to practice, display and retain our cultural heritage.
Published on: 12-Apr-2010 Fear of a Brown Planet – Finding the funny in difference
By Shafeen Mustaq
Nazeem Hussain and Aamer Rahman are two talented and worldly individuals who have found their niche in the world of comedy as a way of expressing their opinions. Whether you agree with them or not, you are guaranteed a laugh. The two are in the middle of their second national tour, Fear of a Brown Planet (FOABP) Returns and I spoke with Bangladeshi Australian, Aamer Rahman, about the touring experience and how audiences are responding to the new show.
The show features Mohammed El-Leissy (Vic State Finalist, Raw Comedy 2007), Nazeem Hussain (Vic State Finalist, Raw Comedy 2007) and Aamer Rahman (Vic State Winner, National Runner-Up Raw Comedy 2007). With a hoard of awards to their name, the Nazeem/Aamer duo is supremely confident about their shows. Aamer tells me that the responses to the shows have been very good and the audience even better. He acknowledges that they have some strong views but asserts that they have had no complaints. “Even if people don’t agree with us they see the humour and laugh...No matter how racist or closed-minded a person is, if you can joke about something Australians really respect it," he said.
The shows premise is “Tackling the topics of immigration, race relations, and the War on Terror head on, Fear of a Brown Planet Returns promises to shock and awe audiences with their anarchic take on politics and race at home and abroad. As always, it's uncompromising, ruthless and cheeky - guaranteed to be more fun than a night in Guantanamo.” Aamer says that there is no specific motivation for their content. “We just talk about what we known and comedy is our way of expressing our views and getting it across to a range of people.”
Aamer speaks passionately about comedy and insists that this is his chosen career. “I did Law and I was miserable”, he said. “I don’t want to be miserable. I enjoy comedy and it’s an excellent way of getting my opinion across.” When asked about the political nature of the shows content Aamer refers to comedians he grew up with. “They never distinguished between Comedy and Politics and neither do Nazeem and I.” While Aamer is modest about his achievements, citing himself as a cross between a comedian and a science fiction buff, his achievements and accolades establish his efforts to catalyse change in modern society. Aamer does hip hop inspired screen and t-shirt printing while also maintaining and active role in the community and touring for FOABP. The two have also been funded by VicHealth to work on a three-year project exploring racism in Melbourne. With such exciting and enthusiastic projects under their belt, Aamer and Nazeem spend much of their time in each other’s company. On their friendship and dynamics Aamer says that while they fight most of the time, he and Nazeem and close friends whose comic styles complement each other and he can see them performing together for a long time to come. Aamer’s next big step is to perform at the comedy club in Dhaka at the end of this year. It will be his first time performing in Bangladesh and he is very excited to be addressing new topics to a new audience in a mixture of Bangla and English.
Nazeem and Aamer’s FOABP is currently part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival and they will be performing in the Sydney Comedy Festival at the Factory theatre from 27th April to 1 May 2010. Whether or not you agree with their views, this show will be a must see for the laughs and the insights into the evolving identity of Muslims in Australia, what they think and most importantntly, how they find the funny in difference. For more information and to book tickets to their show, please log onto http://www.brownplanet.com.au
Published on: 2-Apr-2010 3rd Solo Art & Photography Exhibitions of Zakia Hossain
Opening Night: 31-Mar-2010, 7 pm. End Date: 10 April 2010, 4 pm Venue: MLC Powerhouse Design & Art Gallery, 449 Harris Street Ultimo. Bangladeshi artist Zakia Hossain lives in Sydney for last ten years. Details about the exhibition... About Zakia Hossain... Published on: 10-Jan-2010 BEN Joined Ekushe Academy in Cleanup Australia Day
On the 7th of March 2010, Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN) Australian Chapter joined the Sydney based organisation, Ekushe Acdemy Australia Inc., in Cleanup Australia Day 2010 – the 20th Year of this world’s first initiative. At 8.00am on the day, volunteers started gathering at the UTS Rowing Club Car Park, registered themselves as volunteers and then joined the Cleanup.
Over 30 volunteers, from both Bangladeshi and mainstream Australian society, have donated a total of nearly 100hrs of volunteer time in the cleanup. The areas that they joined were the UTS Rowing Club Car Park, Richard Murden Reserve, Blackmore Park and the nearby areas within Haberfield and Lilyfield councils.
Ekushe Academy has been participating this event over the past 8 years and BEN joined the event for the first time. BEN believes that by collaborating in such community activities better outcomes are possible. One of the biggest gains has been to get to know each other who participate in this generous activity.
BEN expects a more strengthened cooperation and participation in the 2011 Cleanup Australia event. It is worth mention that participants are fully covered by the Cleanup Australia insurance.
Published on: 28-Mar-2010 Ahmed Saber's comment on:
I liked the way the story is told, in plain Bangla with lots of humour. It gives an insight of the everyday life of the struggling Bangladeshi students. This is an eye-opener for those of us, who are sitting on the other side of the fence. Congratulations Sadeq, keep it up.
Ahmed Saber Baulkham Hills
Published on: 21-Jan-2010 Tasmin Osman Passed Away! We are deeply saddened by the untimely death of Tasmin Osman (42), wife of Sheikh Osman Dilon, who passed away peacefully (innan….rajeun) yesterday, 15-Dec-2009, at 9:20pm at the Westmead Hospital. She was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer on 27-Nov-2008. A very happy, friendly and pious woman Tasmin will be missed by the Bangladeshi community in Sydney. She is survived by her three daughters, Ashfia, Samara and only one year old Jaiyana. With a heavy heart we pray for her departed soul. May the Almighty give them courage and strength to cope with the immense loss.
Her Namaj-e-Janaza will be held after Magribh at the Lakemba Mosque, Sydney. She will be buried in a family cemetery in Bikrompur, Bangladesh. Published on: 16-Dec-2009 Money management in Bangladeshi slums SafeSave was started by Stuart Rutherford 13 years ago. A former British aid worker, he had watched the emergence of microfinance. This is the concept on which microlending has been built and imitated around the world. However, Mr Rutherford believes that the very poor should not be forced to borrow solely to set up a business...Details... Sent by Mushtaq Khan
Do you want to buy, sell or just want to giveaway something? Put a free community announcement here. Are you a student? New in Sydney? Looking for a flat mate or shared accomodation? Use this free community notice board...
Published on: 20-Oct-2009 Bangladeshis in City to Surf 2009
On Sunday (9-Aug-2009), the Sun Herald City 2 Surf was held with a record participants of 75,000 runners. This year the City 2 Surf (14 km run from Sydney CBD to Bondi Beach), has established itself as the World biggest Community Fun run in the world.
Like every year, few members of our community participated in the run. Our star performer was "young and evergreen" Ahmed Saber, who finished the 14 km run in 82 minutes.
Here are the list of our successful participants and time to finish 14 km run as we came to know (There could be few others):
1. Ahmed Saber (Bella vista) - 82 minutes
2. Sirajul Islam (Quakers Hill) - 83 minutes
3. Nawshad Shah (Quakers Hill) - 94 minutes
4. Noor Hossain (Rosehill) - 104 minute
5. Sarfaraz Alam Babu (Mount Druit) - 114 minute
6. Sameer Chowdhury (Castle Hill) - 155 minute
7. Shahrouz Chowdhury (Castle Hill) - 155 minute
Published on: 18-Aug-2009
Published on: 28-Jul-2009 Story of 3 meritorious students in BD! Dear Expatriate Bangladeshis, My request to you is, please spare a few minutes to read these lines and the linked article by renowned columnist Mr Ronesh Maitra (Janakantha - 22/6/09). This is a story of three meritorious students who obtained Bangladesh Golden GPA-5 in SSC by gritty determination, hard work and untold sufferings...Details... Published on: 24-Jul-2009 Story of 3 meritorious students in Bangladesh!
Dear Expatriate Bangladeshis,
My request is to spare a few minutes to read these lines and the linked article by Ronesh Maitra (Janakantha - 22/6/09) LINK
This is a story of three meritorious students who obtained Bangladesh Golden GPA-5 in SSC by gritty determination and hard work of untold sufferings.
Saiful Islam, a student of 'Ithkhola Technical Institute & BM College' who worked as a 'Cooli' along with his father, a day labourer to feed the family members and continued schooling.
Hasan Ali, a student of Durgapur High School who worked as a day labourer to help his father, also a day labourer as well as a hawker-treader to sell plastic goods in villages to give succour to the family. Mukti Rani, a student of 'Syed Ashraf Ali High School, Khankandi, Madaripur District. Her father earned TK100 a day as a tailor. She continued her study with a little bit of help from others. All the above three children of the poor families are worried that possibly this is the end of their dream to be medical doctors.
They have the merit and the ability but not the means to achieve what should have been their due. These are very poignant and telling stories. These young people may be able to contribute to the society and the country to an unlimited extend that we may not comprehend now just as the life-story told recently by the renowned economist and the present Governor of the Bangladesh Bank Mr. Atiur Rahman, most of you may have been aware of that.
In our monthly Grameen Support Group meeting on 3 July 2009, we have decided to explore the possibility of creating a fund to assist these three meritorious and aspiring doctors. Following is the proposal:
TK2,000/ per month each = TK6,000/ = A$120.00 per month x 12 = A$ 1440.00, say A$1500 per year.
If we get 15 people who are willing to contribute $100 once i.e just over A$8.00 per month, we can start this fund.
If we get many interested people, say, 120, then we can create a perpetual fund of $12,000, that can put in a fixed deposit with Grameen Bank and that accrues interest of A$1200 per year @10% interest. In that case, after the completion of education of these three, the assistance can continue to other three meritorious students.
We want to make sure that the money goes directly to the recipients regularly and we get feedbacks from the principals of the colleges they study. In order to run this with transparency and credibility, we want to approach the Managing Direct, Grameen Bank Education Program. As you may know, Grameen Bank has such program for the children of Grameen Borrowers. Grameen monitor children's educational progress regularly. This will be outside Grameen's own program, but the bank will be willing to do similar monitoring for us.
I solicit your views and advice, in this regard. Please don't hesitate to call me if you like to on (02) 9670 2745.
Hope to hearing from you soon as it needs quick action.
Nazrul Islam St Clair firstname.lastname@example.org
Published on: 23-Jul-2009 Share Accomodation Available Bangladeshi student, looking for 2 single girls or a married couple to share a 2 bedroom unit in Merrylands. Bus to Parramatta at the door. 8 minutes walk to Merrylands station. Please contact Samira 0433678659.
Published on: 8-Jul-2009 Bangladesh Association of NSW MEDIA RELEASE: Bangladesh Association of NSW Inc., since its inception, was engaged in promoting Bangladeshi culture in Australian. We are happy to inform the community about the recent activities in line with our broader objectives...Details... Published on: 30-Jun-2009 Morning Tea for Cancer Research On 28th of May this year people all over Australia organised Mornig Tea at workplace to raise funds for cancer research. Known as Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea it can be organised by individuals or organisations any time during the months of May and June. Campbellltown Bangladeshi Women's Group LUSOM organised Morning Tea for the first time on Sunday 24 May 2009 at the Campbelltown Bangla School. They have raised a total of $1309.55 (food sale $792.55, donations $517). The entire money has been donated to the Cancer Council. LUSOM would like to thank all participants, volunteers and Bangladeshi community in Campbelltown for the great support. Photos Published on: 11-Jun-2009 Partho Barua's Concert in Sydney
Concert organised by BANGLADESHI IDOL
Published on: 7-Jun-2009 On a tour of a retirement village by a group of 50+ Bangladeshis in Sydney Photos... Published on: 20-May-2009 Good Morning Bangladesh - Glenfield A total of $2467.00 have been raised from Good Morning Bangladesh 2009 -Glenfield program. $1160.00 from food sale and $1307.00 from donations. The entire amount will be donated to Cancer Council NSW on behalf of the Bangladeshi Community.
Published on: 12-May-2009Aussi Bangla Smile`s 2009 Trip to Bangladesh. The team with Bangladeshi staff at the Square Hospital, Dhaka. Published on: 7-May-2009 $5023.40 raised for the NSW Cancer Council Bangladeshi community in and around Blacktown held their 9th annual fund raising breakfast program last Sunday (3-May-2009). A total of $5023.40 have been raised (food $3023.40, donation $2000). Entire amount will be donated to the Cancer Council NSW on behalf of the Bangladeshi community.
Published on: 5-May-2009 Do you want to study in Australia? Macquarie University representative, Mr Tanveer Shaheed is visiting Bangladesh from 12th to 15th April 2009 to talk to Bangladeshi students who want to study in Sydney. Last year 8 students from Bangladesh have been awarded Macquarie University International Scholarships into Bachelor and Master degree programs through this admission process. Please inform your relatives and friends in Bangladesh who would like to pursue further study in Australia...Details... Published on: 3-Apr-2009 Bangladeshi Girl Wins Turkish Music Award! Afrida Musarrat Mamun (Prieta), daughter of Mahmuda Runu and Abu Syed Mohammed Mamun of Holsworthy is a student of year eight at the Sule College (Turkish School) in Preston (South-west Sydney). On 28-Mar-2009, Saturday, Prieta participated in a talent quest called the Australia wide Turkish Olympiad. Her Turkish song won the competition. As the winner of the first prize she will represent Australia in the worldwide competition in Istanbul later this year. We congratulate Prieta on her brilliant success. Video
Published on: 30-Mar-2009 Bangladeshi Girl Wins Turkish Music Award!
Published on: 30-Mar-2009 Over $10,000 given to Red Cross Bangladeshis in Melbourne have achieved their projected target. They have raised a total of $10151.00 for Victorian Bushfire Appeal. The closing event at Chandler Community Centre incurred a small cost of $50.00. $10101.00 ($10151- $50.00) has been donated to Australian Red Cross. Thank you very much for your generous support. - Kamruzzaman Balark, 0438381179 or 97557090
Published on: 26-Mar-2009 Bangladeshis in Melbourne raised $9000 for Victorian Bushfire Victims! Bangladeshi community in Melbourne has raised around $9000.00 for Victorian bushfire victims. Thank you very much for your generous contribution. Our aim is to raise another $1000.00 by this week. So we can donate a round figure of $10,000. I know, many people missed the event on last Saturday. The whole fund will be donated to The Australian Red cross Victorian Bushfire Appeal - Kamruzzaman Balark
Published on: 23-Feb-2009 Spice of Life A book by a Bangladeshi nutritionist settled in Darwin, Atia Nasreen Ghani and Dr. Jessie Chowdhury from Sydney. It is an endeavour to help curry lovers eat healthy food. Nasreen wrote in the preface of the book, ``I have tried to emphasize that you can eat spices and stay healthy``. Nasreen is a nutritionist and Jessie is a practicing medical doctor. This is a great combination of minds to deal with the subject. The book has ten chapters. It talks about your health, disease, diet, obesity, healthy life style and shopping tips. At the end of the book there are 25 recipes of spicy but healthy dishes.
A great book to have in your collection. Look for it at the Ekushe Boi Mela and Boishakhi Mela stalls. Retail price $15. To get it by post contact Nasreen Ghani by email: Nasreen.Ghani@kormilda.nt.edu.au
Published on: 12-Feb-2009 Jahid is looking for Bangladeshi Food. Can anyone from Melbourne please help...Details... Published on: 6-Feb-2009 Australian of the Year Awards Chowdhury Sadaruddin will represent NT Chowdhury Sadaruddin, a Bangladeshi Australian from Northern Territory will represent his state at the Australian of the Year Awards this year in Canberra. He will represent NT in the `Local Hero` category as the winner of the category in NT. The event will start at 4:30 PM on 25-Jan-2009, Sunday at the lawns of Parliament House, Canberra. Over a million people will watch the event on television. Nine network will be telecast the event live. The ceremony will be followed by a live concert of famous Australian musicians. Published on: 21-Jan-2009
Tempestra Entertainment is proud to present the first Bangladeshi music festival and the first Day/Night Bangladeshi musical event `Open Air Concert` in Sydney, Australia. The festival is on the 7-Feb-2009 and is scheduled to start in the afternoon and continue all the way till 10 pm featuring artists: Bappa Majumder, Balam, Mila and S.I. Tutul.
Their visa and other travel arrangements have been completed. They are due to arrive in Australia on the 4-Feb-2009. This festival is a new initiative of Tempestra Entertainment.
Venue: Belmore Sports Ground. 5000 people seating capacity. Full rain & Sun protection. Venue gate will be open at 12:00 noon. Show will start at 2:00pm.
Food: Food & soft drinks will available on the ground. People are advised, not to bring food with them. Only children’s food is allowed.
Sound & Lighting: Digital sound systems and gorgeous lighting are provided by very famous Australian company.
Published on: 14-Dec-2008 End of year Celebration MDSI Women's Group Bangladeshi Women`s group is a community group run by the CALD Women`s Worker of Macarthur Diversity Services and funded by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship`s Women`s Project. To celebrate the end of the year, the group went on a river cruise along the Georges River at Liverpool with other groups from MDSI on 3rd December...Details...
Published on: 11-Dec-2008 End of year Celebration MDSI Women's Group
Bangladeshi Women`s group is a community group run by the CALD Women`s Worker of Macarthur Diversity Services and funded by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship`s Women`s Project. The purpose of this project is to increase Women`s community awareness, and enhance social support networks so that they can actively participate in community development activities and access the mainstream services.
Since the group established, the women meet every fortnight at Minto and participate in a number of information sessions, workshops on health, naturopathy, Yoga, money management and so on. The group was also involved with community programs like Campbelltown City Council`s Riverfest, Harmony Day Celebration, Women`s Day and promoted their culture and tradition appropriately in the mainstream community.
To celebrate the end of the year, the group went on a river cruise along the Georges River at Liverpool with other groups from MDSI on 3rd December. It was a great day for the women with a lot of laughter, chatting, sharing and enjoying the company of other women from diverse backgrounds, music and food of course!
Share their enjoyment and happiness when you look at the snapshots!
PS: The group will meet again regularly from the first week of February 2009 and will have a lot of interesting activities to go on! If you are a Bangladeshi woman and living in the Campbelltown LGA you are more than welcome to join the group!
Want to know more! Please call Rokeya on 46271188.
Published on: 11-Dec-2008
I am a bit surprised to see the Eid Zamaat Date and Time. Some people advertise it will be on 8th and some people saying on 9th. Which one is correct and what base.
Also I have heard that Lakemba mosque(Lebanon Community) announced on 8th same as Afghan Community. Looks like we (Bangladeshi Community) aren`t able to setup our mind which one we should follow. Very upsetting...
Congratulations Dear Chowdhury, we are proud of you. You are the first Bangladeshi who has won the award as local hero category Australian of the year.
As a muslim community leader in Darwin receiving the award might encourage other muslim community leaders bringing light to life.
Published on: 30-Nov-2008
Dear Ani!>sur vai,
I am a reguler reader of your news paper. And we came to believe that what this papaer says is always right.
I could not attend Zakir Hossain`s program. I loved to read your article with pics. I came to know about `Bangladeshi australian Nominated for australian of the year`. I liked this article also. But, I am very sorry to say that in your article on `Poet Joy Goshami` you have mentioned that this was arranged by `Baccchader Bangla School` Bangla academy. I really did not get it.
I knew Bangla academy is itself an organisation where Bangla School is just a part of it. And even it is not only `Bacchader Bangla School` as far as I know ......bororau ai school a porte ase (only to know bangla).
Bangla Academy has huge links like Bangla school which you can find visiting their website. As a well known editor I did not expect this from you.
Thanking you, Kashfia, Sydney
Published on: 28-Nov-2008 Bangladeshi Australian awarded the NT Local Hero 2009 Award Chowdhury Sadaruddin, a Marine Surveyor from Darwin, has been awarded the Northern Territory Local Hero 2009 Award under Australian of the year award ceremony last night (24/11/2008). The award was given by the Chief Minister of NT Hon Paul Henderson at the Parliament House of NT. Chowdhury Sadaruddin will now be representing NT at the national Australian of the year 2009 ceremony under the same Australian Local Hero Category which will be presented by the Prime Minister of Australia at Canberra on 26th of January 2009. Photos
On the occasion of tenth anniversary of its foundation, Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN) held an all-day-long event at the University of Western Sydney (Parramatta Campus) on 1st November 2008 in Sydney. It was participated by Australians and Non-Resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) in Australia.
There were three sessions of the event, an inaugural session, a seminar and a public forum. All participants contributed to the theme of the seminar, namely Bangladesh Environment, through their suggestions and recommendations.
Published on: 5-Nov-2008 Lively and Productive Event on Bangladesh Environment in Sydney, Australia.
On the occasion of tenth anniversary of its foundation, Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN) held an all-day-long event at the University of Western Sydney (Parramatta Campus) on 1st November 2008 in Sydney. It was participated by Australians and Non-Resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) in Australia.
There were three sessions of the event, an inaugural session, a seminar and a public forum. All participants contributed to the theme of the seminar, namely Bangladesh Environment, through their suggestions and recommendations.
Mr. Kamrul Ahsan Khan, Coordinator, BEN Australian Chapter, welcomed the guests and underscored the need for cooperation between Australia and Bangladesh on the global issue of global warming and environment protection.
The first session had a few guest speakers, that included Federal MP for Parramatta Hon. Julie Owens (Sydney); Acting High Commissioner Mahbub Hassan Saleh; Member of the Legislative Council of New South Wales state, John Kaye of Australia Greens; and Mr. Adam Wolfenden, of Aid Watch/Friends of Earth. Senior Lecturer Dr Mamta Choudhury was MC for the inaugural session.
A Bangladeshi young girl Serah Choudhury read out the written appeals on the importance of protecting environment on behalf of the younger generation.
A vote of thanks was given by Dr. Swapan Paul, the Convenor of BEN, Sydney Branch to the guest speakers for their participation and their speeches.
At the session, a website of BEN was inaugurated by Barrister Harun ur Rashid (who was in Sydney from Bangladesh). The website provides up-to-date information of the activities of BEN in containing the adverse effects of global warming on Bangladesh. The address of the website is: http://priyoaustralia.com.au/ben, Speakers stressed the need of Australia to lead the world in combating the effects of global warming by reducing the emission of greenhouse gases and extend cooperation to the needs of Bangladesh in containing the impact of global warming on the country.
At the seminar session there were keynote speakers that include Barrister Harun ur Rashid, former High Commissioner for Bangladesh to Australia; Dr. Debashish Mazumdar and Mizanur Rahman Mazumdar on three separate topics, namely the Environment of Bangladesh: Socio-economic Perspectives and a Way Forward, Environment of Bangladesh: Water Pollution, Water Crisis and Remedies and Environment of Bangladesh: Institutional Support, Problems and Prospects in respective order.
After presentation of the keynote papers, two academics Prof Dr Shams Rahman, Prof Dr Vincent Gomes, and environment specialist Dr Swapan Paul made constructive comments on these papers as discussants.
The public forum (third session) included the presentation by Dr. Nilufar Jahan, of BEN, Australia on the current and proposed activities of BEN in promoting awareness among Non-Resident Bangladeshis (NRB) in Australia and providing support to Bangladesh Paribesh Andolon (BAPA) on its current environ-friendly programmes. many participants took part in the discussion, including Mr Ronesh Maitra (visiting Sydney), Mr Afsar Ahmed of BDRC , Academic Mrs Zakia Mr Anisur Rahman (editor bangla-sydney.com), Dr Narayan Das, Dr Masud, writer Monaem Sarker, principal Shamsun Nahar, Probir Maitra and many others academics, environmentalist & community leaders.
In this session certificates and prizes were given to the winners of essay-writing competition on the occasion.
The event was the second one in providing a link between NRB and Australian government and society to keep abreast degradations of Bangladesh environment and the ways to confront the adverse impacts in Bangladesh through joint collaboration, cooperation and assistance. A third event of BEN will be held in early April in Melbourne.
Suggestions were made to reduce pollution and preserve the natural flow of river Buriganga, and means and strategies to keep clear air and healthy soil in Bangladesh. Education on and awareness of environment were identified as key elements to all people in Bangladesh, especially in the countryside. All school -students from primary to higher secondary must be imparted education on environment and how to meet challenges with its degradations in the country.
The questions and answers at the seminar were animated and lively. The seminar demonstrated that NRBs in Australia are not sitting idle to combat the degradations of environment in Bangladesh. BEN is making all efforts to make awareness of this massive problem among NRBs in Australia but also providing funds in projects in Bangladesh of BAPA.
The holding of the BEN seminars is commendable and the organisers must be congratulated on their current activities in Australia.
Kamrul Ahsan Khan
Published on: 4-Nov-2008
Last Sunday, 26-Oct-2008, Bangladeshi community, mostly in and around Blacktown, got together at the Charlie Bali Reserve for a family event appropriately named, Friendship Day. This event had been initiated and organised by Dr Abdul Haq and his family and friends for many years. This is the first time it has been organised by a newly formed organisation, Bangladesh Forum for Community Engagement headed by Dr Ayaz Chowdhury. Photos... Published on: 3-Nov-2008 Success of Bangladeshi Environmentalist Yet another expatriate Bangladeshi has been gaining prominence slowly but steadily in the international arena. Dr Sajed Kamal has been working on renewable solar energy for more than a quarter of a century. Recently he has won Boston Mayor's Green award for community leadership in energy and climate protection...Details... Sent by Dilruba Shahana, Melbourne Published on: 31-Oct-2008 Top 11 on their way to Sydney! Top 11 singers of Channel I's Shera Kantha 2008, have completed their travel arrangements. Accompanied by five musicians and the presenter Farza Brownia they will arrive in Sydney on the 24-Oct-2008 for the performance on the 25th and 26th of October at the Sir John Clancy Auditorium, University of NSW. $30 tickets are all sold out. For $50 & $70 tickets contact your local Bangladeshi grocery stores.
Published on: 20-Oct-2008 Bangladeshis nominated for the ID awards! Two Bangladeshis have been nominated for this year's ID People award at the ID World Congress, scheduled on 18-20 November, 2008 in Milan, Italy...Details...
Published on: 16-Oct-2008 Two Bangladeshis nominated for the ID awards!
Two Bangladeshis have been nominated for this year's ID People award at the ID World Congress, scheduled on 18-20 November, 2008 in Milan, Italy.
Five awards are given each year in 5 categories. It is considered as "the Oscar" in the ID/Biometrics/ Border Control/Smartcard industry.
The names of the nominees have been posted in the ID World website and voting has begun. All the finalists will be present in the event on 18th November in Milan and the award will be declared and presented ceremonially.
We all are aware that quite silently Bangladesh achieved an outstanding feat having successfully electronically registered the adult population and providing distinct National ID cards, which only a few developed countries have achieved so far albeit with much lesser population. This remarkable milestone was reached under the able and determined leadership of MAJOR GENERAL MD. SHAFIQUL ISLAM and ABDULLAH FERDOUS.
You would be proud to know that Gen. Md. Shafiqul Islam has been nominated for the prestigious "ID World International ID People Award 2008" under the category "Outstanding Achievement Award". Mr. Abdullah Ferdous has been nominated for the prestigious "ID Community Award".
You may kindly follow the link below, read profiles of all the nominees and cast your vote and be part of this global event!
Published on: 16-Oct-2008 Translation of an interview of Dr. Geoffrey Davis published in Prothom Alo in 2005.
(With Kamrul Ahsan Khan and Dr. Abul Hasnat Milton)
1. When did you go to Bangladesh?
As best I can recall, in February of 1972.
I have not got my passport from that era, so I cannot be precise as to the date but I was on the first flight from Dum Dum with the BBC team which was rather exciting because the portside wheel outside my window would not come up and would not lock into place.
We circled Dhaka to use up the fuel because the crew was certain that we would not be able to land very well. As we went over the perimeter fence at Dhaka the wheel clicked into place so we landed uneventfully.
2. How did you get involved with Bangladesh?
Planned Parenthood Federation in London had heard of the West Pak program to impregnate Bengali women on the grounds that a good Muslim will fight anyone except his father. I am told that this idea came from Tikka Khan. This was apparently given as an order to officers as we discovered during debriefing of some of the officers after the war in Comilla. This idea really got up the nose of the people trying to help the Bengali women.
Authorities in Western Europe began to look for somebody who could terminate advanced pregnancies and I had just published the first paper on this in the Lancet (medical journal in England) and they came to me.
I had just met people from Population Services International and they said it would be a good idea if I went so on very short notice I packed my instruments and went to Dhaka.
The project was under the joint flag of the United Nations Family Planning Association (UNFPA), Planned Parenthood International and World Health Organisation (WHO).
The whole project was fairly covert because nobody wanted to be associated with an abortion program. International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) paid my fares and per diems but no salary, so I had a fairly lean time.
3. What did you do?
My main activity was to establish termination clinics in what was left of the hospitals outside Dhaka. In Dhaka there was an established clinic in Dahnmundi (suburb of Dhaka).
Its activities continued during my stay and I had very little to do with it.
I organized teaching cadres for doctors in the regions and demonstrated techniques, which I must say astonished most of them. After one very large meeting I was taken aside by the predisent of the local medical association who said, ‘Of course you know what you are doing is illegal’. And I said, ‘No it isn’t. I have been assured that the law has been changed’.
I went then straight back to Dhaka to see the secretary of state Rab Chaudry to be reassured about this. I said, ‘You might have made some announcement but nobody knows about it’. So he then said, ‘I will give you a letter clarifying your position while we notify all concerned as to the change in the law’.
I carried this with me and cannot recall ever being called upon to show it.
In addition to terminating pregnancies (and it was estimated that at the end of the war there were one million pregnant women in Bangladesh so it was a fairly large project) and in the course of this it became obvious that most of these women had multiple sexually transmitted diseases of varying severity and these had to be treated.
I have no data on the aftermath of these infections, but their very nature suggest that they have interfered grossly with the fertility of the women involved.
In addition to the termination of pregnancies there were a lot of very young infants with sick or absent mothers and we handed these over to a variety of agencies. A lot of these children are now enjoying life in the United States, Canada, Australia and elsewhere.
4. How long were you there for?
I was there until, I think, the end of August 1972.
6. How did you feel working in Bangladesh?
The work was something that had to be done.
I think there is no precedent for a program of this kind. One wonders what happened to the German women overrun by Stalin’s troops at the end of World War II. No one ever speaks of this. There is no literature, no nothing.
I felt that Tikka Khan’s program was an obscenity, comparable to Heinrich Himmler’s Lebensborn ministry in Nazi Germany (q.v.)
It gave me some satisfaction to know that I was contributing to the destruction of the policies of West Pakistan.
7. Are you still in touch with Bangladesh?
Yes, I am still in touch but only episodically.
I have not been back to Bangladesh, but I have been to India several times since this episode.
8. What do you think about current Bangladesh?
I feel they deserve better luck with government than they appear to have now and I think it will require very drastic action on the part of someone to correct things.
Perhaps an appeal to the Russians might help, having regard for their great interest in the past in getting their hands on an Indian Ocean port. At the time that I was there Chittagong Harbour was crammed with Russian ships and not just salvage ships. It is also the case that in every hotel or guest house we stayed in in the provinces the register (if they had one) contained page after page of Russian names from the middle 1960’s on.
9. Memorable events
My introduction to the Hotel Inter-Continental was very memorable. As we got to the lobby there was a sound of automatic gunfire very close to us and the unmistakable smell of cordite. As we discovered later that day, the kitchen staff had all been shot in their kitchen on the grounds of political unsuitability. I have no idea who shot them and didn’t care to ask questions about it.
Another memorable event was on the road to Rangamati (the most beautiful town site I have ever seen in my life). We were driving past a very large rock and suddenly came under fire from a machine gun. We stopped the Land Rover which had been hit quite a bit, got out and shouted, ‘What do you think you’re doing?’ A very shamefaced Bengali came out from behind the rock carrying his machine gun and said, ‘I am so sorry. I thought you were Americans’.
The third thing is I wanted to see Cox’s Bazaar because the only place in Bengal whose name I knew was Cox’s Bazaar because in the first atlas I ever got in Preparatory School I found it on the bay of Bengal coast with the most unexpected name.
We set out to drive down there and we encountered the Indian Army. All of it. Mile after mile after mile of tents and trucks. They were there to stop the Burmese from coming across the border. Indian troops are terrifying to behold.
10. Have any Bangladeshi government officials ever contacted you to recognize your work?
No. The only contact I have had has been recent, and this has not been with the government.
Published on: 11-Oct-2008 Dr. Geoffrey Davis Passed Away Dr. Geoffrey Davis, an Australian doctor, who helped thousands of Bangladeshi women raped by the Pakistani Army during the Liberation War in 1971, has passed away in Sydney on Friday 3-Oct-2008...Details...
Dr. Geoffrey Davis, an Australian doctor, who helped thousands of Bangladeshi women raped by the Pakistani Army during the Liberation War in 1971, has passed away in Sydney on Friday 3-Oct-2008.
Dr. Geoffrey Davis visited Bangladesh in 1972 to help the victims with abortion and to assist the management of war babies. He also helped thousands of women who contacted venereal disease and developed complications due to trying indigenous methods of abortion.
This is great loss for the grateful people of Bangladesh. Our heartfelt condolences go out to his bereaved family.
The funeral of Dr Davis will be held at 1 pm on Monday the 13-Oct-2008 at the Roockwood Crematorium. Bangladeshi Community is welcome to attend Dr. Davis's Funeral in order to pay tribute to his noble departed soul.
Photo: Dr Geoffrey Davis, in Bangladesh, 1972
Published on: 10-Oct-2008 Purgatory in New York Film Festival
Purgatory, a film made by a young Bangladeshi film maker, Hasan Naim Miraz, living in Melbourne, has been accepted for the New York Film Festival.
In the acceptence letter Director of Acquistions Cyndy Johnson said:
"CONGRATULATIONS! We are delighted that Purgatory has been officially selected for exhibition in the New York International Independent Film & Video Festival. We will be organizing a fantastic event featuring films and videos from around the world, including Canada, Australia, France, China, India, Italy, Japan, Germany, Brazil, Ireland, England and of course, all over the U.S."
The festival will be held in March 2009.
Purgatory was one of the four film shown at the Melbourne Film Festival organised by the Bangladeshi community in Melbourne in July 2008.
Purgatory is a story about feelings of love, emotion, pain and lonliness. The story reveals the impact on an individual when he looses the main source of his hapiness, his family. It’s about what happens to a person when his life becomes empty in a twinkle of an eye. Shams’s life is a cruel fusion of past and present only, He sees no future.
Hasan Naim Miraz with his wife Alpana at the Melbourne Film Festival
Published on: 5-Oct-2008 Don't forget Shoeb during Eidul-Fitr!
I went to see Shoeb this morning (Sunday) at St.Joseph Hospital, Auburn with my wife and another family. He is anxiously waiting for his family to arrive. His wife and newly born baby will be arriving this week. Then, he might be released from the hospital. Once released, he and his family will need lot of support from all of us.
From the community, we should try to support him as much as we can. I think, during the coming Eid-ul-fitr, we can take the initiative to raise funds from all Bangladeshi organised Eid prayers. I will appreciate if you can pass this message to the organisers of these prayers. We will raise funds for him at the Quakers Hill prayer.
Let's all pray for his complete recovery.
Regards, Abdul Haq Mob: 0425260239 28/9/08
Published on: 28-Sep-2008 `JOY` is an action-packed feature film about a young Bangladeshi man, living in Perth, Western Australia, and is a story for every one who has had to fight the bullies of society...Details...
`JOY` is an action-packed feature film about a young Bangladeshi man, living in Perth, Western Australia, and is a story for every one who has had to fight the bullies of society. It will feature state-of-the-art special effects and mind-blowing computer graphics.
The film will be spoken in Bangla, with subtitles in English. Bangladeshi and Australian actors will be cast in all of the major roles, and the film will be produced with emphasis on the Bangladeshi market.
We will be shooting in Perth in January 2009 and are about to begin the exciting task of searching for cast, extras and crew from within the Bangladeshi community around Australia.
`JOY` also provides investment and sponsorship opportunities for Bangladeshi-Australian Businesses, with excellent perks offered for investors as well as high profile publicity for anyone who wants to be a part of the production.
Tina McKimmie Assistant Producer
Published on: 23-Sep-2008 FIRST BANGLADESHI WINS AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL POLLS
Prabir Maitra, a Bangladeshi now leaving in Australia, has been elected a Councillor in the elections just held to the Parramatta City Council in Sydney defeating his opponents with a huge difference in votes. He is the first Bangladeshi to be elected to any public office in Australia.
Son of Ranesh Maitra, a senior leftist politician, and Purobi Maitra, a Mahila Parishad activist, Prabir Maitra joined the Australian Labor Party in 2001 and has since remained actively involved in mainstream politics in Australia. His nomination from the ruling Australian Labor Party was a recognition of his active engagement in politics over the last seven years. Prabir Maitra completed his Master’s in Electronics Engineering from Bulgaria and returned home in 1987. As a student, he was an active member of Bangladesh Students Union, a progressive and non-communal organization. After serving in many reputable organizations in Bangladesh, including CARE-International as an IT Specialist, he migrated to Australia in 1997 along with his wife Dr. Aparna Goswami and daughter Ihita Maitra. Later they had a son born in Australia. Mr. Maitra now works for the Childrens Hospital at Westmead, Sydney.
Mr. Maitra is actively involved in a number of social and cultural organisations in Sydney including Bangladesh Scoitey for Puja and Culture, Australian Forum for Minorities in Bangladesh, Bengali Association of New South Wales, Bangladesh Environment Network(BEN) and Ekushey Academy Australia. He held executive positions in many of them. As a human rights activist, he mobilized public opinion against persecution of religious and ethnic minorities in Bangladesh and earned popularity among all sections of people here irrespective of caste, creed, religion and nationality.
Kamrul Ahsan Khan
Published on: 19-Sep-2008 Bangladesh High Commission Special Benefit for NRBs This is to inform that the applications of Non-Resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) for receiving Special Benefits in 2009 will be processed by the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment...Details...
Published on: 26-Aug-2008 Bangladesh High Commission, Canberra
21 August 2008
This is to inform that the applications of Non-Resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) for receiving Special Benefits in 2009 will be processed by the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh. The list of selected Non-Resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) for Special Benefits in 2009, as and when decided by the Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, will be available on the website of the High Commission.
Published on: 26-Aug-2008 Architectural Excellence in Bangladesh!
Architectural Excellence in Bangladesh, a seminar and a week long exhibition organised in Sydney by Bangladeshi Architects in Australia (BAA).
Published on: 25-Aug-2008 Dr Tanveer Ahmed Dr Tanveer Ahmed Shuvo (s/o Afsar Ahmed, Epping) is running for local government in his area for Marrickville. He is well known in Bangladeshi community through his wide ranging activities in media and politics. He represents someone who has real potential in advancing Bangladeshi interests both locally and in Bangladesh. He is already attracting significant media attention with Current Affair running a story about his running this week. He is seeking interested people from the Bangladeshi community to help with the campaign. It will be a low level campaign involving media and leafleting. His email address is: email@example.com
Published on: 20-Aug-2008
Chorom Patra reminded me of those horrible days of 1971. Mukul Bhai was one of the main fugures of Bangladesh who through his literal contribution kept all Bangladeshis motivated. Probably Chorom Patra was one of the programmes that was listened to by most of the people of Bangladesh. No doubt he was a great talent. But it surprises me how I had forgotten him soon after the independence? Probably many others like me had forgotten him too. He should be remembered and revered by all of us. Why don't we get together sometimes and remember his works and his total contribution to the country? Mukul Bhai is still among us and he should be remembered.
Mushtaq Khan, Sydney
Published on: 11-Aug-2008 !> I enjoyed reading the article. No doubt that Anoar Ahmed, Naim Hassan and Wasim Atiq are highly talented people. I hope they will be able to produce more films and receive international awards. I wish I could see their production. It is an encouragement for all the Bangladeshis living in Australia. Great job.
The deadline for receiving the applications by the High Commission has been extended till 7-Aug-2008
Published on: 31-Jul-2008 Habib's 2nd Concert in Sydney
We are pleased to inform that Bangla Vision Entertainment is going to organize a grand concert night of Habib and Ferdous wahid.
Habib is ‘The new Sensation’ in Bangladeshi music industry at this moment.
The event is scheduled for 2nd November, 2008 at “Enmore Theatre”, Newtown. This is a prestigious historic venue in Sydney.
This is their 2nd tour of Australia but the main attraction is, this time they are coming with full hands. People will get the real taste of Habib’s live concert. Australian born Bangladeshis will get a chance to perform with them and promote themselves.
The quality sound system and the gorgeous lighting will make the concert truely remarkable.
Md M Rahman Bangla Vision Entertainment. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Published on: 23-Jul-2008 MILES LIVE IN SYDNEY - Ashiqur Tanim
Tempestra Entertainment has done it again…
Music mania hit the Marana Auditorium on Sunday night as Miles brought their Evening of “Music and Passion” to Sydney. The initials MILES shone on the doors and the crowd couldn’t resist holding their breath as the BAND of the moment made their way onto the stage.
Big band was the theme of the night with musicians on a slightly slanted stage equipped with drums, guitars, keyboards and of course pairs of flamboyant “Sunglasses”.
The stylish Bangladeshi band began the night with their famous song “Jala Jala” much to the delight of the men in the audience. The many men brought along to the night appeared amused by the way the females fawned over the Band, especially when they started singing “O Hridoy Hina”.
“The lighting and the sound was absolutely stunning” – said someone from the audiance. Another said: “Though the sound was a bit loud, it was much clearer than the other concerts we recently came across. But I’ll have to say that the stage presentation and the lighting were gorgeous. I’ve never seen a Bangladeshi concert here, with this much amount of lighting”. It’s obvious from the concert and the reaction of the crowd that Tempestra Entertainment has been able to improve their quality while maintaining their standards. They have taken this entertainment business to a higher level. It is very unlikely for the Bangladeshi organizers here in Australia, to spend such a huge amount of money on lighting and sound systems; but Tempestra Entertainment as usual, proved this wrong.
Ending the night with a sincere thank you to everyone involved in the event and their fans, Miles sang the all time favorite “Firiya dao”.
It was clear as everyone walked out with smiles on their faces that Miles has done their job of making the audience swoon, clear proof that Bangladeshi music isn’t dead even being so far away from home.
** Miles will be ending their Australia tour with a Final Concert on 28th June'08 Saturday at Bankstown Town Hall, Bankstown. Tickets are Available at all Bangladeshi Grocery shops in Sydney. Ticket Price: $ 30/-, $ 40/-, $ 50/- & $ 100/-.**
Published on: 26-Jun-2008 BEN-Australian Contributes $1600 to BAPA BEN-Australia, the Australian Chapter of Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN), which is a global network of non-resident Bangladeshis (NRB), has contributed AUD $1600 (sixteen hundred Australian dollar, equivalent to about Tk 97,000) as its regular annual contribution to BEN central fund to support Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (BAPA)...Details... Published on: 8-Jun-2008 BEN-Australian Contributes $1600 to BAPA
BEN-Australia, the Australian Chapter of Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN), which is a global network of non-resident Bangladeshis (NRB), has contributed AUD $1600 (sixteen hundred Australian dollar, equivalent to about Tk 97,000) as its regular annual contribution to BEN central fund to support Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (BAPA), the pro-environment organization in Bangladesh that is mobilizing people and working vigorously for the protection of Bangladesh environment.
The cheque for the amount was handed over to Professor Anu Muhammad, a social activist and BAPA member, who is currently visiting major cities of Australia to speak about Bangladesh's energy problems and the environmental implications of various energy options, including open pit mining at Phulbari in Bangladesh. The cheque was handed over by Kamrul Ahsan Khan, coordinator of BEN-Australia.
Many academics from the Australian National University (ANU), Canberra University, local environmentalists, and leaders of AidWatch were present at the ceremony. It has been several years now, that BEN-Australia has been contributing to Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (BAPA) through BEN's central fund.
BEN-Australia is undertaking various programs to mobilize NRBs in Australia to support the environment movement of Bangladesh and protect the country from an environmental disaster. It is now planning to hold events in July-August to celebrate 10 years of BEN, which was launched in the United States on July 10, 1998.
Prof. Anu Muhammad thanked BEN-Australia members for their continued support to the environment movement of Bangladesh
Press release BEN-Australia team
Published on: 8-Jun-2008 An appeal to the United Nations Recently, I met a Bangladeshi sister Councillor Lutfa Begum in East London. She is organising a petition to be sent to the United Nations this July (2008). I supported and signed the petition myself. I appeal to every Bangladeshi to sign the attached petition. If you have queries, please contact Cllr. Lutfa begum at Cllr.Lutfa.Begum@towerhamlets.gov.uk - Nahid Kabir, Perth The petition...
Published on: 14-May-2008 !!>AID/WATCH is pleased to be hosting a Climate Change and Development speaking tour of Bangladeshi academic Prof. Anu Muhammad during May 12-23rd. The tour will visit Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Katoomba and the Hunter Valley. When and Where... About Phulbari Coal Project... Details... Sent by Flint Duxfield, AID/WATCH
Published on: 9-May-2008 Good Morning Bangladesh 2008 (Blacktown)
Breakfast organised by Bangladeshi community in and around Blacktown to raise funds for NSW Cancer Council was held on Sunday, 4-May-2008. Attended by a large number of people the program raised $4250.05 (including on-line donations). Photos... Money raised by year...
Published on: 27-Apr-2008 Workshop on Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh
The Australia Bangladesh Business Council has organised an Investment Workshop for non-resident Bangladeshis living in Australia. The workshop will be held at 11 am on 27 April 2008 at St. Peters Library Hall, Sydenham.
A four member delegation from Dhaka Stock Exchange Limited, including Mr. Salahuddin Ahmed, Chief Executive Officer and Mr. Kazi Firoz Rashid, Director will attend this workshop. The executives of Dhaka Stock Exchange will highlight the present scenario of Bangladesh economy, capital market, opportunities of investment by non-resident Bangladeshis and the procedures for investment.
The Australia Bangladesh Business Council is pleased to invite non-resident Bangladeshis with interest in exploring investment opportunities in Bangladesh to attend this workshop. Registration for attending this workshop is free, but an expression of interest is essential for reserving a place.
If you are interested to attend this workshop, please register your interest by calling Mr. Mizanur Rahman Mazumder, Chairman, Australia Bangladesh Business Council on 0449 042 908 before 25 April 2008.
Published on: 22-Apr-2008
Your article "Ei jonmodaag muchhi kemon kore" has really touched the feelings of many Bangladeshis like me. I do not know why they are doing this. I always thought stupidity has a limit; they proved me wrong. Isn't it funny that they eagerly look for remittances that we send home, but tell us to get lost? What an irony! Someday they will tell us that we are person non grata!
Mohammed A Razzaque
Published on: 10-Apr-2008
Please click the play button
Hon. Laurie Ferguson MP, Parliamentary Secretary for Multicultural Affairs and Settlement Services attended the official launch of Bangladeshi Community & Business Directory at Parramatta MRC on 1-Apr-2008. In his speech at the ceremony he emphasized on the need for an umbrella organisation in the Bangladeshi Community...
Published on: 7-Apr-2008 Bangladeshi Community & Business Directory Launch The Baulkham Hills Holroyd Parramatta Migrant Resource Centre invites you to the launch of the Bangladeshi Community & Business Directory. The Hon Laurie Ferguson MP Parliamentary Secretary for Multicultural Affairs and Settlement Services will launch the directory...Details...
Published on: 1-Apr-2008 Canberra Film Festival March`2008
A month-long Film Festival began yesterday on the occasion of celebrating Independence Day of Bangladesh in Canberra by Ouderland Memorial Committee."Etihash Katha Koy"- a discussion meeting, film show, book and photo exhibition on Liberation movement "AMRA CHOLI OBIRAM" was organized yesterday at Community Hall of Bangladesh High Commission at O"Malley. Similar programs will also be organized in other cities of Australia such as Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth etc.
The theme of the program "Etihash Katha Koy" includes a discussion meeting, film show, book fair and photo exhibition on Liberation movement. Former Secretary to Government of Bangladesh Dr. K M Das, former senior Bangladeshi Diplomat Mr Badiuzzaman Khan, Counsellor of Bangladesh High Commission in Canberra Mr Mahbub Hassan Saleh, Web Master of Ouderland Website Mr Masih Babu, and Convenor of the Ouderland Memorial Committee and Editor of Ouderland Website Mr Kamrul Ahsan Khan participated. The discussion preceded by the film show. The discussion meeting was conducted by Dr Kamal Uddin, Join convenor. of Ouderland Memorial Committee. The speakers paid their tribute and deep respect to the great martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the independence of Bangladesh, and to all the freedom fighters who fought, assisted, and psychologically and morally supported the war of liberation. They urged every one to come forward to build Bangladesh as one of the prosperous countries in the world. The speakers also highlighted the contribution of Mr Ouderland Bir Protik, a foreigner freedom fighter, for his significant contribution towards our liberation. The speakers also emphasized on the dissemination of correct information on the history of liberation war the glorious movements that led the nation to the struggle for independence through books, films, media and other cultural activities. Convener Mr. Kamrul Ahsan Khan requested the Bangladesh High Commission to modernize the Ouderland Library so that readers could feel interested to read and know more about Bangladesh history and culture. Dr Kamal in his speech paid tribute to Bangabandhu and other national leaders who contributed immensely to our national liberation movement.
A multi Media presentation on the role of Mr Ouderland B.P was presented by Mr Muhith Masih Babu. In his presentation he explained the Ouderland website and emphasized on his significant contribution towards our independence. He also mentioned the honour given to late Mr Ouderland by attending his funeral by the then Bangladesh High Commissioner Mirza Shamsuszamman. This imitative of honouring Mr Ouderland was highly appreciated by large number of Australians as well as by Bangladeshis living around the world. Distinguished personalities, like federal MP Annette Ellis, former High Commissioners of Bangladesh to Australia Mirza shamsuzzaman and advisor Ouderland Memorial Committee, former Army Chief and Secretary of Sectors Commander Forum in Bangladesh Lt. Gen. Haroon ur Rashid sent greetings and well wishes to the community and the Ouderland Memorial Committee for the success of the program.
Book exhibitions on liberation movement were also organized during the function. A good number of books on the history of Liberation movement were displayed.
A good collection of pictures on Libation movement "AMRA CHOLI ABIRAM" was also displayed during the program was highly appreciated by the audience. This picture exhibition was also held earlier in Brisbane, Sydney and Canberra. Ouderland Memorial Committee is also planning to have similar sort of photo exhibitions & Film show in other cities of Australia.
In the second part of the program a documentary "Stop Genocide" was screened followed by the full featured film "Jiban Theke Neya"- directed by famous film director and writer late Zahir Raihan. This film and the documentary were made based on pre-liberation struggle and the Bangladesh liberation war.
The next film show will be held on 16 March, 2008 Sunday at 11 Grote Place, Kambah, and southern part of Canberra. Full feature film "Aguner Porosh Moni" by Humayun Ahmed and a documentary "Tear of Fires" by Sentu Roy will be shown on that day.
Kamrul Ahsan Khan Canberra, Australia Mobile: +61 0401 683 930
Published on: 16-Mar-2008 $11,880 raised at BADRC Fundraising Dinner
Bangladesh-Australia Disaster Relief Committee (BADRC) organised a fund raising dinner on 3-Feb-2008 at the Ambala Function Centre, Milsons Point. The dinner was attended by members of Bangladeshi as well as wider Australian community.
Shadow Treasurer, Hon. Malcom Turnbull attended the dinner as the chief guest and the keynote speaker. It was a very successful initiative. A total of $11,880 was raised.
This was one of many intitiatives taken by BADRC to raise funds for the recent cyclone victims in Bangladesh. Previous initiatives raised $17,800 for the victims.
BADRC is discussing with Bangladesh Embassy in Canberra and the Govt. of Bangladesh about the possibility of constructing a permanent cyclone shelter with the fund raised; in one of the affected areas.
Published on: 14-Mar-2008 $11,880 raised at Fundraising Dinner Bangladesh-Australia Disaster Relief Committee (BADRC) organised a fund raising dinner on 3-Feb-2008 at the Ambala Function Centre, Milsons Point. The dinner was attended by members of Bangladeshi as well as wider Australian community...Details... Photos...
Published on: 14-Mar-2008 Attn: Bangladeshis in Melbourne Bangladesh High Commission has changed the venue of the Melbourne consular camp at the last moment. New venue has been announced "for the convenience of all". But no apologies given for the inconvenience caused...Details... Published on: 13-Mar-2008
A young Bangladeshi woman, Nazneen, arrives in 1980s London, leaving behind her beloved sister and home, for an arranged marriage and a new life. Trapped within the four walls of her flat in East London, and in a loveless marriage with the middle aged Chanu, she fears her soul is quietly dying. Her sister Hasina, meanwhile, continues to live a carefree life back in Bangladesh, stumbling from one adventure to the next. Nazneen struggles to accept her lifestyle, and keeps her head down in spite of life's blows, but she soon discovers that life cannot be avoided - and is forced to confront it the day that the hotheaded young Karim comes knocking at her door.
Please click the play button to see the trailer...
Chief Justice of Bangladesh - on Independence of Judiciary
Honarable Chief Justice of Bangladesh Md. Ruhul Amin visited Sydney recently. A community reception was hosted in his honour by Prof. Anis Chowdhury and Mr. Nazrul Islam in an Indian restaurant in Anangrove. This should serve as a wake up call for the hibernating Bangladeshi Associations in Sydney. Accompanied by other members of the delegation a soft spoken Chief Justice explained the true meaning of the recently achieved independence of judiciary in Bangladesh.
Sorry about the background noise - Webmaster
Published on: 15-Feb-2008 !>Chief Justice Ruhul Amin Chief Justice of Bangladesh Md. Ruhul Amin visited Sydney recently. A community reception was hosted in his honour by Prof. Anis Chowdhury and Mr. Nazrul Islam in an Indian restaurant in Anangrove. This should serve as a wake up call for the hibernating Bangladeshi Associations in Sydney. Accompanied by other members of the delegation a soft spoken Chief Justice explained the true meaning of the recently achieved independence of judiciary in Bangladesh.
Published on: 15-Feb-2008 Meeting with BEPZA Executive Chairman
In order to stimulate rapid economic growth in Bangladesh, particularly through industrialisation, the government in Bangladesh has adopted an open door policy to attract foreign investment in Bangladesh. The Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (BEPZA) is the official organ of the government to promote, attract and facilitate foreign investment in the Export Processing Zones.
The primary objective of an Export Processing Zone is to provide a special area where potential investors would find a congenial investment climate, free frm cumbersome procedures.
The Executive Chairman of the Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority is visiting Australia during February and is scheduled to be in Sydney on 20 February. The purpose of the visit is to:
• Meet with possible investors in the BEPZA; • Meet with non resident Bangladeshi Australians living in Australia; and • Mmeet with relevant government officials.
The Australia Bangladesh Business Council is facilitating a meeting with the Executive Chairman on 20 February 2008 at 3.00 pm at Level 2, Club City Central, 565-567 George Street, Sydney. Anyone interested in attending should contact the Chairman of the Council, Mizanur Rahman Mazumder telephone 0422 008 733 or by email email@example.com or the Assistant Secretary of the Council, Abul Mintu, telephone 0409 472 700 or by email austbang1@Gmail.com.
Published on: 10-Feb-2008 !> State vs Kaihana Hussain News Archive Kaihana Hussain, a 17 year old Bangladeshi-Australian girl is accused of killing her mother, Yasmine Hussain, and attempted murder of her father, Dr Muhammad Hussain, in October 2006 Published on: 10-Feb-2008
Amazing report "Bangladeshi Fred Holows". Great job. Millions of thanks to bring this to the attention of the world. Big Big salute to Dr.Hasan Sarwar and the Aussie Angels.
Published on: 2-Feb-2008
After a long time I have read a heart-rending article. It is wonderfully worded with a mix of emotion, sadness and optimism. Thank you for the article you have written.
I have no language how to congratulate Dr. Hassan on his great effort to give life to the hundreds of unfortunate children of Bangladesh. You are a great man. We are proud of you.
Through this article you have opened my eyes. Now I can see how unfortunate those kids are at home. Is there any opportunity to raise funds for this project? I hope Bangladeshi community in Sydney will come forward to take part in putting smile on those helpless children.
Regards, Mushtaq Khan
Published on: 1-Feb-2008
Thank you very much for publishing the news titled "Bangladeshi Fred Hollows". It's really very inspiring to see the news. I hope this will inspire many of us to come forward and help our helpless people in many different ways.
My heartfelt thanks and salute to Dr. Hasan. Also to you for your contribution to bring it to our attention.
Regards, Prabir Maitra
Published on: 31-Jan-2008 BEN on Selim Al deen Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN), a global network of non-resident Bangladeshis, expresses deep sorrow at the passing away of Selim Al Deen, the preeminent dramatist of the country...details...
Published on: 25-Jan-2008 BEN on Selim Al deen
Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN), a global network of non-resident Bangladeshis, expresses deep sorrow at the passing away of Selim Al Deen, the preeminent dramatist of the country. Selim Al Deen in many respects was to Bangla drama what Jibanananda was to Bangla poetry. Very few dramatists of Bangla literature, on both sides of the political divide, have brought so much of historical depth and so minute observation and so deep a love of nature as Selim Al Deen did. He would spend sleepless nights to see the color of stars and hear the sound of fog and dew drops.
Among his other achievements, he was the founder of “Gram Theater,” a group through which he projected the drama that could be found not in the limelight of urban middle class life, but in the vast realm of Bangladesh villages and in the fathomless depth of history of Bangladesh society and culture extending thousands of years into the past. Based on his profound comparative literary analysis, Selim could claim that the history of Bangla drama was more ancient that that of drama in Europe, a profound claim indeed.
From his deep love for humanity, Selim could early on sense the plight of the Adibashis in Bangladesh. He therefore devoted himself to capturing in drama the life and struggle of Adibashi people of the country.
Selim Al Deen’s deep love for Bangladesh’s nature, her flora and fauna, her people, his concern for Bangladesh’s Adibashi people are all that BEN and Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (BAPA) are engaged in upholding. In his premature passing away, the environment movement lost one of its most insightful sympathizers. BEN hopes that others of Bangladesh’s cultural and literary field will try to fill in the large void left by Selim Al Deen, emulate his unparalleled love for Bangladesh’s nature, and rise up to the task of saving it from further degradation.
BEN expresses its deep condolences to the family, relatives, friends, colleagues in the field of drama and literature. BEN hopes that efforts will be made to popularize Selim's works, particularly among the younger generation, helping them find their identity in this often confusing globalized world.
Through his magnificent works, Selim Al Deen will live on!
Dr. Nazrul Islam Convenor, Bangladesh Environment Network (BEN)
Published on: 25-Jan-2008 !!!>Ashrafuzzaman Uzzal Meet this extraordinary Bangladeshi man who has travelled over 40 countries on his bicycle. Already an author of two books Ashrafuzzaman Uzzal stared travelling at the age of 24 with only 950 dollars in his pocket. About Uzzal & his books Some of Uzzal's travel photos...
Published on: 17-Dec-2007 Money Raised for Sidr Relief
Many organisations are raising money for the cyclone victims in Bangladesh. To keep the community informed please email your reports to me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I'll publish them on this page - Webmaster
Total Raised so far: $25,982.55
Bangladesh Australia Disaster Relief Committee is very pleased that Dr. Abdul Haque of Hassalgrove has collected $1000.00 for the victims of Cyclone Sidr and donated to the Bangladesh Australia Disaster Relief Committee account in presence of the Acting High Commissioner of Bangladesh. Mr. Abdul Haque is well known in our community for his charitable activities.
We have also collected $310 from those who attended the gathering on 25/11/07 in honor of the Acting High Commissioner of Bangladesh. We appreciate such generous acts from our community members.
- Abdul Halim Chowdhury - 28-Nov-2007 I have deposited total $2,705 in the Bangladesh Australia Disaster Relief Committee account this week for the Bangladesh Cyclone Relief Appeal as follows:
a) $2,000 cheque donated by Parramatta Islamic Cultural Association. b) $605 cash donated by "The Hills District Monthly Islamic Discussion meeting" c) $100 cash as my personal donation this week.
Please note that Tax receipt are not required and these money should go to Bangladesh Govt. Chief Advisor's Relief Fund.
- Mizan Choudhury, Castle Hill - 7-Dec-2007 Mrs. Shahwar Kirmani of Kingslangly has collected and donated $600.00 to the Bangladesh Australia Disaster Relief Committee.
- Abdul Halim Chowdhury - 11-Dec-2007 There was fund raising event “Probhati” held in the morning of 9th December at Village Green, Blacktown where people donated variety of traditional breakfast food. There were few hundred people attended the event who bought the food to raise fund.
From the event we collected cash donations of $1012.00. A generous business person of our community has donated $1000.00 (chq) From the food sell we received $1371.65.
A total of 3383.65 was raised by "Provati". We are grateful to Dr. Abdul Haque, Dr. N. C. Das, Dr. Sawpan Paul, Mr. Shushovon Das and Ahmed Enterprises Pty Ltd for their support for this successful event.
- Abdul Halim Chowdhury - 11-Dec-2007 Many members of our community also deposited money directly in the Disaster Relief Committee's Bank Account. As at 2pm on 11/12/07 total of such deposits are: $2973.90.
- Abdul Halim Chowdhury - 11-Dec-2007 On 7-Dec-2007 Bangladeshi community in and around Campbelltown organised a fund raising dinner followed by an auction of donated goods. $15,010 was raised.
- Media Report - 19-Dec-2007
Published on: 30-Nov-2007 Let Islamic Cultural and Propagation Centre organise your Qurbani Islamic Cultural and Propagation Centre ( ICPC ) is a non-political organization. It has been providing a voluntary services to the Bangladeshi community for many years.
Among other services, every year during Eidul Azha we arrange Qurbani for the Bangladeshi community. One third of the proceeds of the Qurbani go to the genuinely needy people in Bangladesh.
If you are interested please fill in the attached form and contact one of the volunteers in your suburb.
Published on: 22-Nov-2007 Thank you for your support Bangladesh Australia Disaster Relief Committee (BADRC) is pleased to have raised $16880 for the flood victims of Bangladesh. We hope this amount may bring some relief to our brothers and sisters in Bangladesh and help them get back on their feet again.
During the past months Bangladeshi community in Sydney has shown tremendous fellow feelings. The community has shown its sympathy for a student who was suffering from cancer and assisted him financially. Then came the news of disastrous flood in Bangladesh. For a small community like us, the total amount of donations given to various organizations/parties within a short period time is commendable.
We are very happy to inform you that we received highest individual donation of $2000 from a very generous patron from our community. He is well established in his medical profession and is a respectable person with a very big heart. We gracefully accepted his donation.
Next highest donation was received from a generous Australian living in the country side. One of our volunteers approached him for donation. Next day he handed in a donation of $1500. No word is enough to express our gratitude to him.
A young person from our community who is holding high position in corporate world in financial sector in Sydney has donated $1000 and has collected $680 more. He has grown up in front of our eyes in Sydney. Along with his success he holds a compassionate heart for the needy. We are proud of him.
Our remaining donation is the result of sincere and relentless efforts by self motivated volunteers from our community - Momin Bhuyian, Dr. Fazlul Haque, Mizan Chowdhury, Navid Jalal, Abdullah Yousuf Shamim, Nawshad Shah, Abdul Jalil, Prottay Khan, Ziaul Hoque, Ahsan Farazi, Shaeen Khan, Kabir Hossain, Dr. M Bari, Irana Ahmed, Raihan, Farhad Khan, Osman Dilon and other silent achievers. I would like to say a big Thank you to all of you.
Over and above the BADRC is grateful to all the patrons who have donated generously. Your donations have inspired us to carry out our duties in a difficult situation. We salute you.
Abdul Halim Chowdhury Convenor, Bangladesh Australia Disaster Relief Committee Published on: 21-Nov-2007
Thanks to Joynal Abedin for his efforts in sending this interesting &
exemplary dedication by an Expatriate Bangladeshi. Link to the Pictures of the filters:
Published on: 12-Nov-2007 Abul Hussam's Arsenic Filter Read the story of a Bangladeshi man whos invention is already helping millions of people and got him an international reputation. (Photo and article...courtesy of TIME Magazine)Sent by Jaynal Abedin
Prabir Maitra Shafiq Helal Morshedi Published on: 9-Nov-2007 New Bangla Website Few Bangladeshi students in Australia have established a news website named banglapost.com.au. It willpublish news in Bangla and English. Published on: 5-Nov-2007 Friendship Day, annual picnic organised by Bangladeshi Community in Blacktown council area, was held on 2-Sep-2007 at the Charlie Bali Reserve
Report... Photos... Sports Results... Published on: 1-Nov-2007 !!!!>
Dipayon Passed Away
We inform you with a heavy heart that Dipayon, a Bangladeshi student in Sydney who has been fighting with cancer for last six month, has passed away last night - Al Noman Shamim.
About Dipayon... Dipayon's Funeral... Published on: 29-Oct-2007 AN OPEN LETTER TO ORGANIZERS... Australian Islamic Welfare Society Inc.
Dear brothers/ sisters,
It is good to see that Bangladesh-community members in Sydney-south are
talking initiatives to build an Islamic centre there.
I would like to bring the following points to the attention of the
1. Do You have a clear constititution and transparent guideline about
of the property.
2. Will u prepare A Realistic plans for maintenance, public affairs and
parking facilities soon?
3. Will it be wise to present
a copy of architectural plans
policies and procedures
future plans to publish annual report
while collecting funds for the project?
4. Won't it be more impressive to collect funds in Bangladeshi
gatherings...where all relevant documents can be displayed and organizers can answer to queries from community members.
People who take initiatives to plan and implement community projets deserve
our gratitude and compliments; they also have the responsibilities to avoid
confusion, bitterness, cracks in the community, while such projects are
Dr. Maqsud Omar
Published on: 25-Oct-2007 Hanif Sanket and Australia
As always it was a pleasure to watch Hanif Sanket. But at the same time I am sadden by the comments he made in the show on 21 Oct 2007 at the Homebush Sports Centre.
He is a great performer, no doubt. He should have stayed above controversy. He shouldn’t have lost his temper like that. The way he has gone on about the rumours and all about Kangaroo, I think at the end of the day it is the people who started the rumour won the day. It wasn’t the audiences’ fault that the hall was not full. And he shouldn’t have started the show with that negative attitude; it created negative vibe till the end of the show. None of the audiences could connect to the show.
For organisers, please remember you are living in Australia. 15-20 min late can be considered, but not 2+ hours late!! And also, that venue is for indoor games not for stage performance, unless you put the stage in the middle.
Dear Mr Sanket, Yes we are Bangladeshi and proud of it, but we also are very good Australians. We are proud to call ourselves Bangladeshi-Australians. So please show some respect to Australia. Because of some people, you cannot blame the whole country.
Kavi Zaman, Quakers Hill
Published on: 22-Oct-2007 Preparing You for the Job You are Trying to Get in Australia
A 7 day employment related course organised by Parramatta MRC for the newly-arrived Bangladeshis...details...
Published on: 15-Oct-2007 !!!!!>
CES raised $18000 for the flood victims Community Education and Services Centre Inc. (CES Centre), a community organization run by the Bangladeshis in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney has raised $18000 through a fund raising dinner on 16-Sep-2007.... Full report with photos... Congratulations! More info. Published on: 9-Oct-2007 Appeal to the Bangladeshi Community My name is Ben Wilson and I am a 4th year occupational therapy student from
the University of Newcastle. I am currently involved in a project which
involves depicting occupations in an international context. For the content
of this work I have chosen to focus the work of Dr Mohammad Yunus and the
Grameen bank in Bangladesh...details...
Published on: 6-Sep-2007 Appeal to the Bangladeshi Community
My name is Ben Wilson and I am a 4th year occupational therapy student from
the University of Newcastle. I am currently involved in a project which
involves depicting occupations in an international context. For the content
of this work I have chosen to focus the work of Dr Mohammad Yunus and the
Grameen bank in Bangladesh.
My aim is illustrate how the use of microcredit has had a positive effect on well-being for many people throughout Bangladesh, particularly women.
Further to this, the project involves a visual representation of our chosen issue through an artwork that will be displayed in the university gallery.
It is my wish to incorporate into this artwork actual Bangladeshi Taka,
however so far I have been unsuccessful in sourcing any through
foreign exchange companies. As a result, I am appealing to the Bangladeshi community in Australia in anticipation that you may be able to be of assistance. I fully intend to purchase these notes and simply require assistance in sourcing them. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Published on: 6-Sep-2007 Bangladeshi Idols in Australian Media
Recently, "Close-up One" (the famous Musical talant hunt program of Bangladesh) winners of 2005 and 2006 has visited Australia along with music director Shawkat Imon and Producer Tanveer Khan. Interestingly this program got some attention in the Australian Media. Sydney Morning Herald has published a colourful coverage of the event and interviews of the stars in its special Sunday edition. Also, in the web edition of the newspaper it has used a multimedia presentation of the concert and the interviews...Parvez Shonchoy...
This afternoon the Executive Committee of Bangladesh Society for Puja
& Culture Inc handed over a cheque for $4,290.00 and cash $65.00 to
Dipayan Choudhury, a Bangladeshi student in Sydney battling with
Cancer. The amount was collected by many volunteers who thankfully
responded to the Society’s request. During this time, Dipayan’s mother
was present beside him with a few members of the Executive
Committee and the community.
The Society is grateful to all those members of the Society and the
community at large including many non-Bangladeshi kind-hearted
individuals for their generous support. The Society can only say ‘Thank
you’ to all.
Last week Dipayan was released from hospital for a few weeks and has
been under close observations.
The Society will continue this campaign for this humanitarian cause.
Please visit our website (www.bspc.org.au) for updates and contact
email@example.com or any member to make your contributions.
The Executive Committee
Bangladesh Society for Puja & Culture Inc
Dr Bikash Ghosh, Public Relations Secretary
Published on: 20-Aug-2007
Published on: 19-Aug-2007
Published on: 2-Aug-2007
Published on: 12-Jul-2007 !!!!!>
Abdur Rahim Mollah Passed Away
We are very shocked to announce the sudden death of Abdur Rahim Mollah of Ingleburn today (4-Jul-2007) at around 4:45 pm. (Innalilla...rajeun). Apparently he suffered a massive heart attack while jogging this afternoon. An ambulance was called by the people on the street. He was pronounced dead on the way to hospital. An active member of Bangladesh Welfare Scociety Campbelltown, Abdur Rahim Mollah was a very capable man and a dedicated community worker. He will be sadly missed by his family, friends and the Bangladeshi community. We pray for his departed soul.
Published on: 5-Jul-2007
Published on: 5-Jul-2007
Published on: 1-Jul-2007
Published on: 8-Jun-2007 !>
We are surprised to read Mr. Anonymous' comment. Is this the way some typical young Bangladeshi men grew up? We expected apology from BBP to Mrs Huq, instead Mr. A demanded respect from her. Don't you know if you want respect from the seniors you have to respect them first.
We have been present that day and witnessed what happned. Anyway for your information she didn't want or ask any special treatment from BBP. She gave them her plan they accepted. If you invite someone people in your house, before they finished their dinner will you ask them to leave you house for later guests? Instead of paid artists wouldn't the volunteer artists expect more respect and better treatment?
Published on: 9-May-2007Ek Boishakh 1414......... Once a family doctor of many Bangladeshis in western Sydney, following a stroke couple
of years ago, Dr. Chowdhury is wheelchair bound today. Selection of Dr. Chowdhury for the Bangabandhu Award
this year was highly appreciated by the community. Photo: Monirul Islam Published on: 2-May-2007 !> Shave my hair off! Three Bangladeshis from Darwin recently participated in the `Shave Day` fund raising activity. Mr. Amin Islam individually collected around $11,000. Mr. Sofiqur Rahman Tony and Ragib Ahsan participated as part of Buslink Group of Darwin. All three participants like to thank all the people who kindly supported this event - Sadaruddin Chowdhury, Darwin Photo... Published on: 18-Apr-2007 !!!!!!!!!!!!!>
Tiny tiger roars its cricket defiance An article by Michelle Cazzulino in todays Telegraph (Page 24). She wrote about unkind comments made by Australian Cricket commentators and Bangladeshi community's reaction over the tigers victory against South Africa.
Don`t miss the little Bangladeshi dance group of the Gomes and Correya sisters performing "We [Dhakai] are [Jamdani] Animals" on the CHILDREN'S & YOUTH STAGE between 11.25 and 11.30. This is the first time any Bangladeshi
group is participating in this festival - Fida Haq Published on: 31-Mar-2007 !>
Please cut and paste the following message in an email to couple of your Non Resident Bangladeshi friends:
Would you like to be a voter in the next election in Bangladesh?
Please have a look at the following petition and sign it if you agree.
Published on: 22-Mar-2007 !!!!>
13th Annual Talent Day Celebrated
Children of Bangladeshi community who make it to the selective schools and those who pass the HSC are honoured every year by Dr. Abdul Haq and his family. They have been doing this for last 13 years.
Photos... Published on: 1-Mar-2007 !!!!!!>
Parramatta MRC requires a Bangladeshi Worker
Expression of interest is sought in writing to fill in a locum position for the months of April and May 2007 for a Bangladeshi Community Settlement Services (CSS) worker...Details...
Published on: 22-Feb-2007 !!!!>
ATTENTION: Boishakhi Mela Organisers
I am very much concerned to see that both Boishakhi Melas are happening on the same day (21-April-2007)! I am a poor Bangladeshi and there are many other young people like me who miss get-togethers like this very much.
We would like to attend both Melas, but won't be able to because of the date conflict! These two Melas used to happen one week apart at Burwood. Dear organisers, please do something about it if it is not too late.
- Mostafa Akber Fahmy Published on: 14-Feb-2007 !!!!>
"Good Morning Bangladesh"
on NSW Cancer Council Website
Published on: 26-Jan-2007 !!!!>
Priyo Australia will Celebrate Australia Day
Australia Day (January 26) is the biggest day of celebration in the country.
On this day we come together as a nation to celebrate what’s great about
Australia and being Australian. It’s the day to reflect on what we have
achieved and what we can be proud of in our great nation. This time we are
pleased to announce that www.priyoaustralia.com is going to launch a special
issue on Australia Day with the participation of young Bangladeshi
Australians. This issue will contain articles, drawings, poems, interviews
etc. from young Bangladeshi Australians expressing their thoughts on growing
up in Australia. We expect boys and girls from Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra
and Brisbane to be participating in this special edition. It would be
greatly appreciated if we could get your involvement as well. These are some
of the ways in which you can become involved:
You can choose one of the following two topics and write an essay (maximum
1000 words) and send us through e-mail –
Topic A. According to you, what does it mean to be Australian? Or,
Topic B. What do you think makes Australia great?
There are some attractive prizes for this competition. So, get into the
action right now!!!
Write an article:
You would be required to write a short ½ page- 1 page article discussing any
of the following questions or topics –
• What do you think defines an Australian? Define yourself as an Australian
• Your thoughts on multiculturalism in Australia
• Things you love about living in Australia
• Explain life for you growing up as a young Bangladeshi Australian (maybe include some dot points)
• Do you think you have gotten more out of life by having 2 different cultures supporting you?
• Using our unique Bangladeshi background to involve and advance ourselves in the Australian
community e.g. multiculturalism
• What are the common values we find between Australian and Bangladeshi cultures
You can use these questions/topics as just a guideline and/or use your own
This will be an audio recorded interview… so no glamour make up required.
The questions that will be asked can also be used in the article.
What do you know about Australia day?
What is your aspiration about growing up in a Bangladeshi/Australian community?
What can we do better to enhance social integration within the Australian community?
What are your thoughts on having a youth summit for Bangladeshi Australians
all over Australia?
If you’re quite the poet, please don’t hesitate to write a poem for the
issue. We would very much appreciate a poem based on Australia or growing up in Australia.
This is for all those artistic ones who find writing a chore. A drawing or
painting would not only add color and life to the issue but would also be a
great way to express thoughts and emotions on living life in Australia. Any
creative piece of artwork that represents Australia, Australia day or
growing up in Australia would be greatly appreciated.
Whether you do an essay, article, poem, interview or none of them, a
personal page from every one of you would be great. This personal page is
mainly a page that you design with photos of your friends and/or any shots
from special events. You can include quotes or an inspiring word or two. On
the page you will need to introduce yourself, how long you’ve been in
Australia for and why you appreciate living here so much. Getting a personal
page from as many individuals as possible would be great for the issue.
These are all just suggestions and ideas, if you have any other way in which
you would like to contribute to the special issue or if you have any other
ideas for the creating of this issue please feel free to contact us.
Deadline for your invaluable contribution: January 21, 2007.
Nabilah reza (Kishoree)
0423 266 626
M. Murshed Haider (Anjohn)
0422 854 547
Published on: 16-Jan-2007 !!!!>
Priyo Australia will Celebrate Australia Day
www.priyoaustralia.com is going to launch a special issue on Australia Day. This issue will contain articles, drawings, poems, interviews etc. from young Bangladeshi Australians.
Details... Published on: 16-Jan-2007 !!!>
Bridge competition in Gold Coast
Bangladeshi Community in Gold Coast enjoyed their first ever Bridge competition (Auction) final on 10-Dec-2006, Sunday. Sanjib-Tapan team is the winner, Babul-Iqbal team got the second place and Sanaul-Usof team came third. Over a month long competition started on 31-Oct-2006. It was co-ordinated by Sanjib Bhowmick. The winners will receive their awards at the Victory Day Celebrations on 17-Dec-2006.
Sanjib Bhowmick, Phone: (07) 5532 0206 (H), 0432 088 916(M).
Published on: 14-Dec-2006 !!!!!!!!>
Business Directory bangla-sydney.com will provide free listing to all Bangladeshi owned businesses in Australia under the Business Directory. Please email your Business name, short description about the type of business, opening hours, contact details and address to firstname.lastname@example.org
Published on: 12-Dec-2006 !>
Prof. Yunus Received Nobel Peace Prize
Thanks to satellite tv and live webcast Bangladeshis around the world had a chance to watch one of the greatest ceremonies on earth. It was such an emotional experience for us to watch a humble woman from a poor Bangladeshi village receive the most prestigious award in the world. Prof. Yunus, you have achieved the unimaginable. You have empowered the downtrodden women of Bangladesh. You have launched them to the world stage. We salute you.
Video Clip... Published on: 11-Dec-2006 !!!!>
Is Bangladesh A Democracy or Autocracy
By Professor Mahfuz R. Chowdhury
Professor Chowdhury teaches Economics at C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University, USA.
Sharmishta My name is Sharmishta. I have been selected for OC placement 2007 at the Kingswood Public School, Kinswood.
I studied at the Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic School in St. Marys and this year at Claremont meadows Public School, Claremont Meadows.
I have received lots of trophies and certificates for my academic achievements and local community activities. I received a state finalist medal from Premier Bee spelling competition 2006 at ABC radio and Television broadcasting center. I love reading, music, science, sports.
Sharmishta with her mum & dad, Nilima and Sanjib Mohajan (Pintu).
Raisa Islam My name is Raisa Islam. I go to Mascot Public School. I have been selected for the Oportunity Class. From next year I'll go to Woollahra Public School.
I love reading books. The thickness of the book doesn't worry me. Besides my studies I also enjoy participating in different Bangladeshi cultural activities like acting, reciting and dancing.
Please meet my mum and dad: Humaira Sayeed and Zahidul Islam
Dear Parents, if your son or daughter made it to the selective or OC schools this year please send his/her photo and a short description to us. Our email address is: email@example.com Published on: 26-Nov-2006 !!!>
Angela Going to Bangladesh Are you a Bangladeshi living in Perth? May be you can help Angela. She is going to Bangladesh in 2007.
Read Angela`s email... Published on: 24-Nov-2006 !>
I have read the short article written by Ria.
Her comment about ignoring the internationally acclaimed talent Ms.
Irene Khan touched us. Yes, we must admit, it
is a shame for the 30,000 Bangladeshi Australians that we
did not organise any reception for her. We commend Ria`s comments.
Yes, our organisation (JAG, Justice And Government) will sincerely try to send our congratulations to her and invite her to attend our functions in her next visit to Australia. Thanks.
- Jamil Shibli, Canberra
Published on: 22-Nov-2006 !!!!>
No Reception for Irene Khan! I think it`s very sad that someone like Irene Khan has recently visited
Sydney to receive the Sydney Peace Prize, and none of the Bangladeshi community organisations have bothered to give her a reception or recognise her achievement... - Ria More...
- Jamil Shibli - Masood Chowdhury Published on: 21-Nov-2006 !>
No Reception for Irene Khan! I think it`s very sad that someone like Irene Khan has recently visited
Sydney to receive the Sydney Peace Prize, and none of the community
organisations have bothered to give her a reception or recognise her
Yet when those MP's and ministers come
from Bangladesh, they are welcomed grandly by the organisations, and the
leaders of our community get busy trying to ensure their comfort.
Irene Khan, the first woman, the first Asian
and the first Muslim to head the largest human rights movement in the
world - Amnesty International, is surely a well deserved citizen of
Bangladesh. Is she not worth giving a reception or a show of
appreciation? Shame on the Bangladeshi community. Shame on us.
Published on: 21-Nov-2006 !>
I find Monirul Islam's progressive thinking very encouraging.
"It is not an offence wearing the veil..............or the mini skirts"
I hope this will help Bangladeshi parents change their attitude. I hope they will find it easier to allow their daughters to wear mini skirts if they want to.
I hope they will not subject them to verbal or sometimes physical abuse
for wearing mini skirts.
Even if it helps some parents that's a step forward.
Published on: 16-Nov-2006
Second Bangladeshi to Receive Sydney Peace Prize
Ms. Irene Khan, the Secretary General of Amnesty International will receive the Sydney Peace Prize 2006.
More... Previous winners...
Published on: 30-Oct-2006 !!!!!!>
Time for Celebration!
Professor Yunus is the first Bangladeshi to win a Nobel Prize. We all feel like celebrating it. I have organised a community meeting to discuss how to celebrate this momentous event in a befitting manner. You are cordially invited. Please join us and give us your thoughts.
Published on: 23-May-2006 !>
A panel discussion on the need for Bangladeshi politics in Australia.
Participants: H.E. Ashraf-ud-Doula, Dr. Quaium Parvez, Dr. Momammad Abdur Razzaque, Mr. Nehal Neamul Bari and Mr. Kamrul Ahsan Khan
Published on: 7-May-2006 !>
Get-together of Bangladeshi Students
Bangladesh Association of NSW Inc is organising a grand get-together of
all Bangladeshi students studying in all the tertiary educational institutions in Sydney and Wollongong on Sunday, 16-Apr-2006, between 11AM and 3 PM at the Parramatta Park in Sydney. All members of the community including their families are welcome to participate. Please attend and make the Association work for the community.
Dr Masudul Haque, President
Published on: 17-Apr-2006 !>
Update: Bangladeshi Student Passed Away
Shahed`s body has been sent to Bangladesh following Namaj-e-Janaza at the Lakemba mosque last week.
Shahed`s wife Nahida Akter has now opened an account with the Commonwealth Bank (BSB 062191, A/C 10357621). Any financial contribution for her study and for her daughter`s uprbringing would be highly appreciated.
Helal Morshedi / About Shahed Published on: 6-Apr-2006 !>
Published on: 1-Apr-2006 !!!>
Bangladeshi Student Passed Away
Md Shahed Hossain (25), a Bangladeshi student, lost his battle with long illness and passed away on 27-Mar-2006 at the Liverpool hospital. His first child, Tasnima, is only one month old. She was born while her father was in the hospital, fighting for life. Tasnima will never know her father.
Details... Published on: 30-Mar-2006 !>
Independence Day Celebrated in Canberra
The 35th Independence and National Day was celebrated by the Bangladesh High Commission in Canberra in a befitting manner. A number of people were recognised for their contribution to Bangladesh and Bangladeshi community in Australia.
Details... People recognised... Published on: 30-Mar-2006 !!!>
Bangladeshi Student Passed Away
Mohammed Shahed Hossain (25), a Bangladeshi student, lost his battle with long illness and passed away last night (27 March 2006) at Liverpool Hospital, Innalillah…. .It is a sad end to a promising career and family life. May his soul rest in peace. Our sympathy goes to his wife and little daughter. We pray for their strength and courage to overcome the schock and the sense of loss.
Shahed was suffering from Meningitis and Tuberculosis in his brain, and was bedridden in Liverpool Hospital for the last several months. His only child, a month old daughter named Tasnima, was born while he was ill in the Hospital.
You may recall that a couple of months ago we made an appeal for financial assistance for Shahed’s treatment and rehabilitation through this website.
His body will be flown back to Bangladesh following the completion of all official formalities. His Namaz-e-Zanaza will be held at Lakemba Mosque late tomorrow, Wednesday 29 March 2006. Exact time of the prayer is not decided yet but likely to be after Maghrib prayer.
Please contact Br. Dr Monzur Imteaz for the prayer time, and if you would like to provide any financial assistance to the family, especially for Tasnima’s future upbringing and education. An account will be opened soon for making such contributions. Contact details are: Dr Monzur Imteaz, Tel. 9750 6109 (H), 9806 5656 (W), Mob: 0425 340 736
Published on: 29-Mar-2006 !>
35th Independence Day
Celebrated in Canberra
The 35th Independence and National Day of Bangladesh was celebrated by this Mission in a befitting manner. In the morning the National Flag was ceremonially hoisted at the Chancery premises by H.E. Mr. Ashraf-ud-Doula, High Commissioner of Bangladesh, in the presence of officials, members of their family and representatives of Bangladesh community in Canberra followed by a special munajat for the salvation of the departed souls of the martyrs of our Liberation War and for peace, progress and prosperity of the country. Messages received from the Hon’ble President, Hon’ble Prime Minister and Hon’ble Foreign Minister were read out.
Afterwards the High Commissioner chaired a discussion. He highlighted the significance of the Independence and National Day of Bangladesh in different ways. Officials of the Mission and members of the community including former Ambassador Barrister Harun ur Rashid, Dr. Abed Chaudhury, Dr. Sadequr Rahman, Dr. Shamsul Khan, Mr. Mainul Haque, President of Bangladesh-Australia Association Canberra Inc. and Mr. Borhanuddin Shafi took part in a lively discussion highlighting the background and significance of the day. They also expressed their happiness on the progress and development of the country. A documentary on Bangladesh titled “Discover Bangladesh” was also screened on the occasion.
On 27th March, 2006, the High Commissioner and Mrs. Ashraf-ud-Doula hosted a reception at Great Hall, High Court Building, Canberra on the occasion of Independence and National Day of Bangladesh. A large number of government officials from the host government, members of diplomatic corps, businessmen, media and members of the Bangladesh community attended the reception. During the reception a dance drama performed by the local Bangladeshi artists spanning our history from 1757 to 1971 captivated the audience.
Senator the Hon. Amanda Vanstone, Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs of Australia attended the reception and handed over Certificates of Appreciation to 10 Bangladeshi- Australians living in Canberra for their contribution in promoting the image of Bangladesh in different sphere. A list of the names is attached.
With the support of local sponsors, a Souvenir has been published by the High Commission to commemorate the 35th Independence and National Day of Bangladesh.
29 March 2006
Published on: 29-Mar-2006 !>
List of Eminent Bangladeshis recognized on the 35th Independence & National Day of Bangladesh.
Barrister Harun ur Rashid
For his contribution in promoting the image and national interest of Bangladesh through his writings.
Mr. Zillur Rahman
For his contribution in teaching the Bangla language to the new generation of Bangladeshi-Australian children by establishing and running a Bangla School.
Dr. Abed Chaudhury
For his contribution in agricultural development in Bangladesh through scientific research, and taking science to the grassroot level in the country.
Mr. Ehsan Ullah
For his contribution in giving a voice to the Bangladesh community in Canberra by establishing a Bangla Radio.
Mr. Farhadur Reza
For his unique creativity in promoting Bangladeshi culture, tradition and history through different events.
Ms. Habiba Ahmed
For her active contribution in projecting Bangladeshi cultural heritage in Australia.
Ms. Sakiba Rahman
For her devotion in preserving and promoting pure Bangla Music.
Mr. Mainul Haque
For his commitment in inculcating traditional values to the Bangladeshi-Australian children.
Mr. Shahadat H Manik
For his contribution in launching a web portal dedicated to augmenting connectivity among the Bangladesh community in Australia and sharing news and views.
Mr. Avijit Sarkar
For his contribution to popularize Bangladeshi Music and establishing a Music & Dance School for the Bangladeshi-Australian children.
Published on: 29-Mar-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania..
Published on: 20-Mar-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania..
Published on: 20-Mar-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania..
Published on: 20-Mar-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania..
Published on: 20-Mar-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania...
Published on: 20-Mar-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania...
Published on: 20-Mar-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania...
Published on: 20-Mar-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania...
Published on: 20-Mar-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania...
Go to first page... Published on: 20-Mar-2006 !>
Bizarre Bangladeshi Politics
The current political situation in Bangladesh is worsening and public suffering is increasing day by day. The current political instability of the country will take the nation to the deepest economic turmoil in the near future if the situation is not tackled by dialogue. The more the situation crawls like this, the more the nation will pay the toll in future. As most of us know by now the political parties are there in Bangladesh to create anarchy and grab power for their own interest, not for the well being of the nation. Both parties are just using the excuses of constitution, neutrality, reform, CEC, CA etc, to make the public life miserable to justify their cause in the name of democracy. Is this democracy?!
The globalised world is much more competitive than ever before in all areas of economic activities. Bangladesh is a struggling nation in the global economy with ocean full of poor population and a handful of most corrupted politicians and bureaucrats. No nation should suffer like this in the hands of political leaders whose only target is to grab power, no matter what happens to the economy, to the vast majority of poor people. We should understand the price the general public are paying for the gain of a few political leaders. We know them all, we know BNP, we know BAL, we know JP, we know Jamaat, and moreover we know all the leaders associated with these parties. Don’t we know them all?
We were fortunate enough to have so many great leaders in the past in a short timeframe. We haven’t seen any charismatic leadership in last 25 years. The nation needs an honest leader to save the country from the hands of corrupted politicians. There is no alternative but to change the leadership to restore political stability and accelerate economic development of the country without corruption. I believe it is not rocket science. This is just the political will of a group of honest people who are experienced in their respective fields and have a great heart to make the nation prosperous. I think this is high time to have someone like Professor Yunus who has proven his ability to show the world how to eradicate poverty and at the same time create an example of leading a simple life, although he had every opportunity to lead his life quite the opposite. However, it doesn’t mean Professor Yunus should run the country but I hope we have someone like him who is a real leader in all aspects of leadership and also has every attribute to be a great leader.
Bangladesh is suffering from serious image problem around the world and it is only because of so called politicians. If it continues, the nation has no hope but to suffer from unprecedented lawlessness and unjustified poverty.
Monirul Islam Monir
Published on: 16-Mar-2006 !!!!!!!!>
Bangladeshi Academic Receives Charles Sturt University Teaching Excellence Award
Dr Mir Rabiul Islam, a Charles Sturt University psychologist has been named the winner of the Vice-Chancellor’s Teaching Excellence Award for 2005.
Published on: 14-Mar-2006
Bangladeshi academic receives Charles Sturt University teaching excellence award
Dr Mir Rabiul Islam, a Charles Sturt University psychologist has been named the winner of the Vice-Chancellor’s Teaching Excellence Award for 2005.
From the School of Social Sciences and Liberal Studies on the University's Bathurst Campus, Dr Islam is the course coordinator of the largest undergraduate psychology course. He is coordinating courses for over 450 students.
This is a highly competitive award where over 500 academic staff from seven faculties at Charles Sturt University are short listed for the final nomination.
Dr Islam was born in Rajshahi, Bangladesh in 1960 and obtained his PhD in Psychology from the University of Bristol, UK. He is admired by his colleagues and students as an innovative, encouraging, and highly approachable teacher.
The award will be presented to Dr Islam in May at the Faculty of Arts graduation ceremony.
Published on: 14-Mar-2006 !!!!>
Community Settlement Service I am a community settlement service worker for Bangladeshi community. Our
office is situated at Daceyville; Sydney Multicultural Community Service. I
am working here from Mon - Wed, 10am - 4:30pm. For any assistance please contact us.
Saami Ansari / Tel: 9663 3922 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Published on: 25-Feb-2006 !!>
A Historic Moment
In an auspicious ceremony, the world`s first International Mother Language Day monument has been unveiled in Sydney`s Ashfield park on the 19th day of February in the year 2006 AD.Ekushe Academy, a Bangladeshi community organisation in Sydney, took the initiative to build this historic monument. Other side...
The monument is made of a single piece of 900 million years old rock. It is nearly 4 meters tall, 90 cm wide and 21 cm thick.
Published on: 19-Feb-2006 !!!>
Bangladeshi Student Died in Sydney
The car accident in which the young Bangladeshi student, Zahid Reza Khan (Ronon) died, is still under police investigation. His close friends worked very hard to get all the official formalities done quickly to send his body to Bangladesh.
Details... Archive... Published on: 8-Feb-2006
Bangladeshi Student Died in Sydney
The car accident in which the young Bangladeshi student Zahid died is still under police investigation. His close friends worked very hard to get all the official formalities done quickly to send his body to Bangladesh.
There were two other passengers in the car, one of them is lucky enough to escape with minor bruises and cuts and another passenger is in a serious condition at the Prince Alfred Hospital. Police will interview them along with any withness to establish the real cause of this horrific accident. Unofficial report at this stage suggest that `Spedding` may have caused this tragic accident.
Last Friday (Feb 03), Zahid`s `Gayebana Namaje Janaja` was held at Arncliffe and UNSW mosque after the Jumma Prayer. His body was flown back to Bangladesh on Friday night by Singapore Airlines. According to the news received from Dhaka, Zahid`s `Namaje Janaja` was held on Saturday (Feb 05) at DOHS Baridhara mosque.
Zahid was the only child of his parents. Passed HSC in the year 2000 from Mirzapur Cadet College (MCC). He came to study at UNSW and this was his last semister. Zahid was staying in the Sydney suburb of Hillsdale with his friends.
Zahid`s Father Brigadier Abid Reza Khan, was also an ex-cadet from Faujderhat Cadet Collgege (FCC) and now lives in DOHS Baridhara, Dhaka.
- Nawshad Shah Published on: 8-Feb-2006
My sincere condolences
Just saw the shocking death news of brilliant Bangladeshi student Zahid
Reza on bangla-sydney.com. It is really a heart-breaking news and a big
loss for all of us. I can not think of the situation his family -
specially the parents are in.
My sincere condolences to all his family members and friends. May God
help the family to overcome this huge shock.
- Prabir Maitra Published on: 2-Feb-2006
Bangladeshi Student Died in Sydney
Zahid Reza Khan (Ronon), a Bangladeshi student in Sydney has died in a car accident at Marrickville last night (31-Jan-2006). He was studying at the University of NSW and living in Hillsdale. He was supposed to go to Bangladesh this Saturday.
His friends are organising to send his body back home after the post-mortem is done. Zahid was an ex-cadet from Mirzapur Cadet
College (HSC 2000). - Nawshad Shah
Condolence - Prabir Maitra Published on: 1-Feb-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania. Anisur Rahman with his family (April 2005). From left: Aurelia, Preo, Anisur and Stela
More photos... Published on: 19-Jan-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania. Dr. Aman with his family (December 2005).
From left: Inger, Sarah, Steven, Elizabeth and Dr Aman Published on: 19-Jan-2006
Fida Haq wins WSN Grass Roots Sponsorship Program Fida Haq, a Bangladeshi artist and community cultural development worker practising in Sydney, is one of the winners of this year’s prestigious WSN Grass Roots Sponsorship Program for his particular interpretation of environment-conscious art. Under the Grass Roots Program, Haq is to create a large-scale public artwork using recycled objects and materials in the second-quarter of 2006.
Parramatta City Council supported Haq’s project by deciding to use this yet-to-be created artwork as the centerpiece for their ‘sustainable-living awareness drive’ that the Council will undertake in 2006.
Details... Some of Fida Haq`s Artworks... Dhaka Exihibition... Sydney Exhibition... Work for Bangladesh High Commission, Canberra... Published on: 9-Jan-2006Bangladeshi Students in Romania. Good catch Domnul Haq. Published on: 1-Dec-2005
Baulkham Hills Holroyed Parramatta Migrant Resource Centre (Parramatta MRC) cordially invites you to attend the Bangladeshi Settlement Seminar on 12-Nov-2005.
This Seminar is for all Bangladeshis. It will assist you in identifying emerging needs to better co-ordinate settlement services.
Published on: 12-Nov-2005
Annual Iftar Program 2005
Bangladeshi Families will organise their annual Iftar Program on 22-Oct-2005 at Rooty Hill mosque.
Published on: 22-Oct-2005
Reception of Abdul Gaffar Choudhury
in New Zealand
- Report: Shafiqur Rahman Bhuiyan.
A Reception party held on last Sunday a t Mount Albert War Memorial Hall ( Rocket Park ), Auckland , New Zealand in the honour of London-based veteran Bangladeshi editor, journalist, renowned, prominent, courageous columnist, human rights activist and lyricist Abdul Gaffar Choudhury and mammoth tribute was paid to him by Bangalees living in New Zealand.
Chief Guest: Abdul Gaffar Choudhury
Special Guest: Ms Parveen Sultana, Cultural Secretary, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Research Centre, London
Special Guest: Dr. Nurur Rahman Khokan, General Secretary, Bangabandhu Parishad , Australia
Presided over by: Engr. Shafiqur Rahman Anu, President, Bangabandhu Parishad , New Zealand
Conducted by: Dr. Engr. Nazrul Islam, General Secretary, Bangabandhu Parishad , New Zealand
Abdul Gaffar Choudhury said in his speech that he is not a historian but a journalist. He is the witness of lots of incidents related to Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the members of his cabinet and his political party. He said Bangabandhu belongs to history and history would judge him in due course of time. No degree of antics or propagandist overtures of political parties can change that. Similarly, there cannot be any controversy over the fact that we are what we are today, i.e. proud citizens of an independent state, largely because of him. Historian and researchers should analyse his life and works, and present them in totality to the generations to come. Finally he thanked Bangalees of New Zealand for giving him such tribute and respect and he assured that he will visit this nice country, New Zealand again.
Ms Parveen Sultana narrated, in brief, the background of the formation and production of `docu drama` `Palashi Theke Dhanmondi`. She also thanked Abdul Gaffar Choudhury for producing such a demanding drama and she also expressed her gratitude to the all artist, contributors and who are directly and indirectly involved with this drama.
Dr. Nurur Rahman Khokan, explained the importance of the organization of the follower of Bangabandhu and he assured that every assistance will be provided to Bangalees of New Zealand from their end.
Engr. Shafiqur Rahman Anu thanked Abdul Gaffar Choudhury for visiting New Zealand in spite of his busy schedule and his physical constrain. He expressed that it is our good luck to have such living companion of Bangabandhu among us. He requested him to complete and to publish the auto-biography of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, which was recorded by him. He specially thanked Dr Qaiyum Parvez, President, Bangabandhu Parishad, Australia, for arranging this visit of Abdul Gaffar Choudhury and other distinguished guests. He praised the spectators, especially who came from outside of Auckland and who helped in many ways to make this reception a successful one.
Dr. Engr. Nazrul Islam also thanked Abdul Gaffar Choudhury and other special guests. He expressed forgiveness for their limitations and shortcoming of this function. He said that Abdul Gaffar Choudhury should carry on his script on the facts and documents of rare achievements of Bangabandhu and his government, which are not known to a lot of Bangalees.
After the discussion recently produced famous play on the life of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, `Palashi Theke Dhanmondi` written, directed by Abdul Gaffar Choudhury was exhibited.
Shafiqur Rahman Bhuiyan (ANU)
144 Unit-C, Canal Road,
Avondale Auckland - 1007
Published on: 9-Oct-2005
Grameen Support Group Get-together
Grameen Support Group members had their first get-together last Sunday (25-Sep-2005) at the Lake Parramatta Park, North Parramatta.
The stage decoration and lighting was very impressive and created the atmosphere right for such an occasion. Program management was focused to delivering a quality program to the audience and the feedback suggests that we were successful.
We would like to thank all the participants including the main singer Pradip Ball, Zia, Shwachchhaw, Muna, all volunteers and the audience who ultimately made the program a success. We are also very grateful to the print and electronic media for the coverage.
We hope in future we will return with similar cultural programs and variety shows.
For Hridaye Nodi.
Published on: 21-Sep-2005 !!!!!!!!!!>
For a better understanding of
your kids in Australia
A six-week workshop designed for Bangladeshi parents.
Starts on 29-Aug-2005 at the Parramatta MRC.
Published on: 19-Aug-2005
Prof. Nazrul Islam Visited Sydney
Prof Nazrul Islam of Kyushu University, Japan on a visit to Australia held a discussion meeting in Sydney on 17-Jul-2005 at the Toongabbie Anglican Church Hall.
Many environment professionals and enthusiasts from the Bangladeshi community attended the well organised discussion.
Prof Islam spoke about the role of expatriate Bangladeshis in banning the two stroke engine vehicles (scooters) and polythene bags in Bangladesh. He stressed on the need for networking of Bangladeshi environment professionals around the world.
After a short tea-break, Prof Nazrul Islam answered question raised by the participants.
Photos... More about Prof Nazrul Islam Report on the Canberra Meeting and Seminar Report on the Melbourne Meeting
Published on: 25-Jul-2005 Community Meeting and ANU Seminar
On Monday the 5th of July 2005, a meeting was organised at the Australian National University to discuss and to explore ways of getting involved with the environmental issues of Bangladesh. Members of the Bangladeshi community living in Canberra attended the meeting.
Dr Nazrul Islam who is a professor of Economics Kyuscho National University, Japan and founder-coordinator of Bangladesh Environmental Network (BEN) spoke about the environmental activities around the world and called upon Australian Bangladeshis to come forward to address issues related to the environment.
Mr Kamrul Ahsan Khan, a BEN member, introduced Dr Nazrul Islam emphasising the importance of building networks all over Australia to take active part in positive work for Bangladesh.
This meeting was also addressed by scientist Dr Abed Choudhury, seniors lecturer Dr Milton Hasnat, Dr Hilal Ahammad, Mr Ahmed Imran ,Ms Nazmun Ratna, Mr Lokman Hussain, Mr Shadap Parvez, Mr Zobaid and many others.
Dr Islam warned that environmental degradation resulting from the side effects of poisonous air, uncollected garbage, and lack of open space, polluted and dying water bodies, congestion, noise, and traffic jam can stifle the economic growth of Bangladesh.
He added that these problems pose a greater threat to Bangladesh in particular, because of the country`s small landmass, population density and rapidly developing industry. Dr Islam also warned of the fallacies that currently exist in treatment of environmental issues in economics.
Discussants provided various recommendations that centred around need for environmental awareness from the grassroots, role of the mass media and non-resident Bangladeshis through to receiving the endorsement of political leaders in Bangladesh. Participants were enthusiastic to build up a network
and to actively participate in the environmental issues in Bangladesh.
Before the meeting, a seminar was arranged by the Australian National University. Dr Nazrul Islam presented the keynote paper on Vietnam. The seminar was attended by the High Commissioner for Bangladesh to Australia, H.E. Ashraf-ud-Duala and other scholars and students of the University. High Commissioner`s speech and participation in the seminar was appreciated by the ANU authority and the Bangladeshi community.
More meetings will be organised soon in other major cities of Australia .
Kamrul Ahsan Khan
Published on: 9-Jul-2005 Professor Nazrul Islam's visit in Melbourne and discussion on BEN
Prof Islam Research Professor and Head of Quantitative Analysis Section of
The International Centre for the Study of East Asian Development,
Kitakyushu, Japan visited Melbourne for a short time. Within his two days
stay at Melbourne he made a brief presentation on Bangladesh Environment
Network (BEN) in front of a group of Bangladeshi. Dr. Nazrul Islam is the
founder coordinator of BEN. His discussion on BEN made it clear that
wherever we live it does not matter if we wish we could contribute to bring
a change in our country. BEN's activities is to improve environment of
Bangladesh is a success. BEN in cooperation with other organisations of
Bangladesh namely Parash, BUET, Bangladesh Paribesh Andolon succeed in doing
of couple things. As follows:
- There is no more leaded fuel in Bangladesh which generate black smoke
with carbon mono oxide;
- Scooter free city is a credit to BEN
- Polythin free Bangladesh also a battle won by BEN
- Save the river is BEN's target as a result river Buriganga got
proper attention from the authority and unauthorised shopping complexes in
the bank of the river were demolished.
The discussion was very much meaningful. Impact of the BEN's activities on
the environment has been observed by some of us who recently visited
Dr. Islam also mentioned that BEN is run by voluntary contribution from the
community and they usually collect fund during Christmas time.
Published on: 9-Jul-2005
HAIR LANE UNISEX SALON
Nasima Akhter loves hair dressing. She did her diploma, spent four years as an apprentice, got her licence and now opened her own hair dressing salon at Minto (south-west Sydney). She is probably the first Bangladeshi lady in Australia to take hair dressing as a profession. We wish her every success in her business venture. Photos... Published on: 25-May-2005