The Bangladesh branch of United Nations Childrens’ Fund (Unicef) has come under severe flak for a Facebook post which appears to distort a poem by national poet Kazi Nazrul Islam.
An online poster by Unicef Bangladesh on its Facebook page has been lambasted vehemently by linguists while Unicef maintains it has done nothing to warrant such backlash.
On December 23, Unicef Bangladesh posted a photo of an infant waking with the caption “Bhor happen, dor open.”
According to linguist and Nazrul scholar Professor Emeritus Rafiqul Islam, the usage of Bangla and English in this manner distorts the rhyme and disrespects the language.
Prof Soumitra Sekhar said the Bangla language is a wealthy language and sinister attempts to introduce foreign words in this manner reveal the callousness of many people.
Unicef Communications Specialist Shakil Foyzullah said social media language has always had an informal tone. He said it is done in good, clean fun, and nothing else. He further said the post could have been made with either language, but the usage of both made it stand out and encouraged audience engagement.
This article was first published on Bangla Tribune