|H. 27 Dhu al-Qi'dah 1443||No: 1443 / 24|
|M. Sunday, 26 June 2022|
While the Flood-Affected People are Crying Out for Food and Shelter,
Hasina Government has compelled the people to celebrate the inauguration of her mega-looting Project
The Padma Bridge - Exposing the ‘Development Miracle’ of the Rotten Capitalist Ruling System
Almost half of Bangladesh is now in the grip of the worst-ever floods due to the coming down of the heavy monsoon rain waters from the surrounding hills of India’s Meghalaya region. Nearly six million people of the north and north-eastern regions of Bangladesh are stranded or displaced from homes in low-lying north-eastern parts of the country. Many people have died and others are in unimaginable humanitarian crisis as the stranded people are struggling for shelter, ingesting water and meals for the last seven days. Government’s relief support exists on paper and limited to daily briefing of officials only but in reality millions of people are still crying out for minimum relief goods. Mainly the ordinary citizens are volunteering their knowledge, skills, resources and funds in relief and rescue operations while Hasina government is busy celebrating the Padma Bridge inauguration. To celebrate their mega-looting, government has allocated huge cores of money, for example, Taka 90 million was allocated for the ninety public toilets that are being built for the public gathering on the inauguration day. Whereas only Taka 6.55 and less than half kg of rice per head has been allocated for the 4 million people of the flood-hit areas (The Daily Star, June 22, 2022)! How cruel and apathetic these secular rulers have become that they now mock people’s sufferings. After ‘inspecting’ people’s indescribable misery in the flood-hit areas from a helicopter, Hasina described the current flood as "nothing new" and also said that “(floods) have some positive aspects too”! She never bothered to meet the victims of even a single shelter during her so-called inspection visit. Rather than thinking about relieving the misery of the victims, Hasina government is busy to forcefully impose their ‘development’ upon people. To hide their mega corruption and looting in the Padma Bridge construction, they want people to be in the festive mood. Thus, SSC exam were rescheduled and university classes were cancelled due to inauguration of the Padma Bridge!
O People! This is the ugly face of Capitalist policies undertaken by the World Bank or the Capitalists ruling class where ‘development’ is only meant for the secular rulers, crony capitalists and the colonialists, and there is no room for mass people in it. It is well-known that Hasina government looted millions of dollars out of this project by increasing its project cost nearly three times higher than the original projection. India disbursed full $200 million grant to Hasina government for this project as it serves her transit route between Kolkata to Agartola through Dhaka and long-cherished geopolitical and connectivity interest (“India disburses full $200 million grant it had pledged for Padma Bridge”, bdnews24.com, 16 July 2015). China was also pleased to be awarded with the construction of the bridge as it will realize its economic interest. By making all the major stakeholders happy and looting people’s money, Hasina government has shifted all the cost burdens onto the shoulder of the people; it has proposed high bridge tolls due to which people’s lives and livelihoods will be hampered. Secular oppositions have exposed their true faces by keeping blind regarding the interests of Mushrik State and the Capitalist’s policy as if the project would have been better if undertaken by capitalist’s institution-world bank.
If development under secular ruling were really people-centric, then a tiny part from this Padma bridge project could have been diverted to build quality embankments in the Haor (wetland) regions to protect the livelihood, crops and resources. Proper dredging and levees solutions would have been there by now to protect the low-lying regions, which are prone to monsoon flooding every year. These secular rulers’ negligence for people has reached to such a height that military rescue operations teams are to use ‘banana plant rafts’ to rescue people struggling to evacuate due to a shortage of boats in those areas. It is a global phenomenon that ordinary citizens are never a priority in the Capitalist ruling system. For example, Egypt, Turkey and Pakistan are running numerous mega projects according to the neocolonialist policies by financing these through foreign debts and loans from World Bank and IMF; as a result, despite their positive GDP growth in these countries, on one hand they are being burdened with enormous foreign debts, and on the other hand economic instability, poverty and income inequality are rising every year.
O Muslims! History is the witness that only the Khilafah (Caliphate) ruling system truly cared for the mankind irrespective of class, race and religion. Under the Khilafah, development was genuinely people-centric and there never existed any elite class to exploit the mega-projects in their favor. The second Caliph Umar (ra) also undertook mega-projects to improve the livelihoods of the people. He ordered the governor of Egypt Amr ibn al-As (ra) to build a canal connecting the Nile and the Red Sea to keep the food supplies uninterrupted for the citizens of Medina during the time of famine. Under Umar’s (ra) leadership, the 138 kilometers (85.7 miles) long ‘Amir al-Mu’minin Canal’ was built just within six months. The two seas were connected which had been a big unmaterialized dream of the earlier Persian and Roman kings. Also, when the city Basra of Iraq was established during Umar's rule, he (ra) started building a nine-mile canal from the Tigris to the new city for irrigation and drinking water.
O Muslims! You have tolerated these treacherous secular rulers long enough and now it is high time you got rid of them and the capitalist ruling system that produces them. You can protest and criticize the rulers, arrange round-tables and conferences about flood disaster management. But by now you should have realized that your misery will never end until this entire secular ruling system is removed. Natural disasters are not an unmanageable problem in of itself, rather the rotten and deluding secular-capitalist system itself a calamity all over the humanity across the world, that never care for the wellbeing of the ordinary citizens. Unless you take up the one-point demand for the Khilafah Rashidah (rightly guided Caliphate) on the method of Prophethood and uproot capitalist system, the following days will be even harsher than they are now. Allah (swt) says,
[وَمَنْ أَعْرَضَ عَن ذِكْرِي فَإِنَّ لَهُ مَعِيشَةً ضَنكًا وَنَحْشُرُهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ أَعْمَى]
“... but whoever turns away from My remembrance will have a life of great hardship. And We shall bring him blind to the Assembly on the Day of Resurrection” [Surah Taha: 124].
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