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Language hero reinstated as student after 62 years

  • Published at 01:36 am February 21st, 2017
  • Last updated at 05:41 pm February 21st, 2017
Language hero reinstated as student after 62 years
But, after 62 long years, the government in late 2014 reinstated his status as a student of the school. Hailing from Purbadhula upazila of Netrakona, language veteran Azim said he had moved to his maternal uncle’s home in  Netrakona city’s Islampur for studies after his father’s death. “I was enrolled in class VI at Anjuman School in 1950,” said Azim, who is in his early 80s now. Two years later, he had become a member of the Chhatra League unit of Netrakona Mohkuma in the fifth year of formation of the student front. The struggle for officially recognising Bangla as a state language of then East Pakistan had gained ground in 1948, and gradually reached every nook and cranny of the country, said the octogenarian. The movement truly gained momentum after government forces opened fire on the historic rally on February 21 of 1952, killing many demonstrators and spreading the agitation across East Pakistan, he said, adding: “When the movement was at its peak, I also took part in it from Netrakona. “The government expelled me from school on the charge of reciting a self-composed poem at a programme of Netrakona Mohkuma under greater Mymensingh in December the same year.” Afterwards, the authorities concerned sought an explanation of and the reason behind the poem called Ajab Bhuri (strange belly), which was satirical in nature. “In my reply, I spoke my mind, calling a spade a spade. As they found my answer unsatisfactory, I was asked thrice more to explain the poem and the reason for writing it down. But, I remained rigid in my stance by replying the same every time,” he recalled. “Finally, the school authorities sent an expulsion letter to me in 1953, causing me to stop studying,” added the language veteran. Azim claimed that he had been involved in rallies and cultural programmes to muster public support to help expedite the Language Movement from the the sixth grade. He said: “Two of my satirical poems titled ‘Pocket Bhari’ and ‘Ghusher Tholi,’ mainly supporting the movement and criticising the then government, were published in the school magazine in 1951 and 1952 respectively.” More than six decades after the expulsion, the Anjuman Model Government High School authorities finally reinstated his studentship on December 26, 2014, marking the 100th anniversary of the founding of the school. “Regaining the studentship helped me get rid of a stigma I had long been carrying,” he said. Asked about what else he needs in his last days of life, the language hero said he applied for Ekushey Padak. “I urge the government to help me die with the honour of winning the priceless award,” he said.