Ansar Ahmed Ullah :: As there was no guarantee of an independent Bangladesh Ziaur Rahman didn’t want to involve himself with the liberation movement and be hanged for treason. He had said this to Lt Col Abdul Qadir in 1971 revealed Nadeem Qadir in his new book ‘Muktijudha: Ojana Oddhai -Liberation War: The Untold Story’. The book mentions Ziaur Rahman had gone to their house with Begum Khaleda around 21/22 March. While talking to Nadeem Qadir’s father Lt Col Qadir, Ziaur Rahman expressed these views amongst other things.
Journalist Nadeem Qadir’s new book Muktijudha: Ojana Oddhai ‘Liberation War: The Untold Story’ was launched at an event on Friday 12 May at Micro Business Centre, East London. Abdul Gaffar Choudhury who was the chief guest said the book was an important, personal and political account of our history of Liberation War.
The book event was chaired by Janomot’s editor Nobab Uddin and conducted by Janomot’s executive editor Saiyem Chowdhury with Bangladesh’s High Commissioner Md Nazmul Quaunine as guest of honour. The book was reviewed by journalist Syed Badrul Ahsan of the Asian Age who described Nadeem Qadir’s book as a quest for truth. London Bangla Press Club’s president Syed Nahas Pasha said while there maybe debate with any new publications it was a positive initiative. Journalist Ishaque Kazal said this book is a story of a son’s 36 years long search for his father.
An emotional Nadeem Qadir spoke fondly of his father and mother and said many years have passed but he cannot forget his father. He mentioned his mother Hasna Hena as a brave person who unfortunately passed away in 1999. He added, ‘Everything I am today, I owe it to my Mum & Allah’.
The book was serialised in Weekly Janomot. It has 32 chapters, including chapters on the disappearance of his father, his search to find the burial spot of his father, Bangabandhu and the Nirmul Committee. Nadeem Qadir’s mother Hasna Hena was one of the founding members of the Nirmul Committee.
The book is essentially the story of his father Lt Col Abdul Qadir who on 17 April 1971 was taken away by the Pakistani army never to return. The book is also about Nadeem Qadir’s long search for his father’s body. In 2007, he finally tracked down the spot where his father was buried in Chittagong and made arrangements to bring back his father’s remains.
In 1970 Lt Col Qadir was posted to Chittagong from Rawalpindi, West Pakistan. He was sent on deputation to Oil & Gas Development Corporation. It was the time of Bengali nation’s political agitation against autocratic Pakistani rule. In Chittagong Lt Col Abdul Qadir kept in touch with Brig Mazumder and Cap Rafiq who were preparing to fight back the Pakistani military. Lt Col Qadir contributed money to local Awami League leader during the agitation. He had also raised Bangladesh’s flag at his official residence prior to crackdown on 25 March ’71. This act didn’t avoid the eyes of local Biharis. After the war broke out he had also supplied explosives to freedom fighters. The Biharis must have informed the Pakistani military. As a result, Lt Col Qadir was picked up from his home on 17 April 1971 in front of his family members, including Nadeem Qadir, never to be seen alive. Nadeem Qadir learnt later that his father was taken to Chittagong Circuit House for interrogation. He was tortured there including on electric chair. He was finally killed and buried with six to seven other Bengalis behind Apollo Poly Clinic. He then, with the assistance of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the Bangladesh Army brought back his father remains to be buried with full military honour at Natore’s Qadirabad cantonment on 22 September 2011. The army acknowledged his father’s martyrdom by stating ‘This grave of the war hero will remain as the source of inspiration for the members of the Sappers family and for the compatriot new generation’.
The event came to a close with patriotic songs performed by Dr Shyamal Chowdhury and Mostafa Kamal Milon. The event was sponsored by Indian Fusion restaurant, Bisshobangla news portal and Faith printers.