Kudos to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for listening to the voice of the people -- it would seem that protesters demanding reform to the quota system have been heard.
There is now, potentially, a complete overhaul of the quota system, which would mean that special provisions would only be made for the disabled and ethnic minorities -- indeed those provisions are necessary to our growth as a nation and are in a completely different category from freedom fighter quotas.
The PM’s assurance should satisfy the protesters fully, and they can now lift their barricades, and finally return to classes.
Of course, the damage done in the meantime is regrettable, with widespread vandalism across campuses --particularly reprehensible was the attack on the Dhaka University vice chancellor’s residence, and the PM is right to vow stern action against the perpetrators.
Given that the government was already considering the protesters’ demands with the utmost seriousness, it should never have come to this.
While criticisms of the quota system are legitimate, we hope that in the future, such disagreements will be settled in a more constructive manner, and not through protests that cause tremendous inconvenience to the common people.
This is not the way create positive change.
The PM has shown that she can be flexible when it comes to the demands of the people, and we hope our protesters will show the same flexibility and willingness for dialogue in the future.
Having said that, heavy-handedness on part of the police is also not acceptable, as we expect civilized behaviour from all sides.
Now that the PM has spoken, we hope the matter can now be laid to rest, and life can return to normal.