How dare you hit my children!
These are the children whom we protect every single moment from every single harm. We leave nothing to chances as far as their security is concerned.
Every day we drop them off to school, college or coaching centres and pick them up to bring them home. When they are in pain, we feel more pain. When they get one blow on their tender bodies, we get hit with an intensity 10 times more. We become the bravest of persons on earth when they are in danger.
So protective we're, so sensitive we're, so desperate we become about their safety and security. If need be, we do the unthinkable for their wellbeing. These are the out-of-the-planet instincts that make us parents.
Our children on the streets have come under attack, and we, the parents, have every right to ask who has given them the right to touch our children.
Hundreds of our children were chased down the streets of Dhaka on Saturday and over 100 of them were beaten up mercilessly. At least 30 more students were injured in similar attacks yesterday. Equipped with sticks, iron rods and machetes, some youths clubbed and chopped students on the streets, as law enforcers stood by as silent spectators. At times, some policemen were seen accompanying these wild goons to attack the students. They even broke into apartments to nab fleeing students before mauling them.
Who are these unruly men? And what's their connection with the police?
The home ministry and police repeatedly asked the students to go home and warned they might become a target of some vested quarters. Do the attacking thugs belong to the vested quarter that is out to set the non-violent students up against the government? If so, why did not the police take care of these criminals? And what stopped them from saving our children from these unruly people? That should be precisely the job of the police. These policemen should be immediately brought under trial after thorough investigations.
It would be very easy for the top brass of police to identify those criminals and cops in question from photographs and videos that appeared in the media. Police frequently do that to find the real culprits of a crime of this magnitude. Police must come out clean by disowning this misdeed of a handful of them in uniforms. The police force exists to protect people's interest, after all.
What wrong have these students done?
Students were out on the streets because the state has failed to ensure a safe road for them. They are out because no concrete assurance came from the government in the last eight days, since the death of two college students on July 29, when a bus ploughed into the college students boarding another bus.
Aged 7-19, these children exposed only part of the irregularities that are ailing our roads. Drivers without licence or below driving age. Ministers' cars on wrong side of the road. Vehicles without fitness papers. Police officials without driving licence. Violation of U-turn prohibition. They taught their elders what to fix and how. And they did it with due courtesy, politeness and hardly breaking any law of the land.
The only crime, if one likes to call it so, the children may have committed is that they came out on the streets and made us take their cause seriously. Indeed, traffic movements were hampered to some extent. Then again, traffic movement randomly gets hampered with VIP movement, political agitation and wild-cat transport strike.
The state machinery was expected to show all the patience in the world with these children. Have the elders in power exhausted all the options to salvage the situation? Did they talk with them and try to accommodate their perspective?
In our homes, we frequently manage such awkward situations. We show our patience, talk with our children, give them our perspective, agree to what's agreeable and then move on to solution. Dynamics of a state is no different from those of a family.
Did the state do its part? If not, how could it let a “vested quarter” beat up our children, and that too in front of police?
It is obvious that parents would come to their children's rescue, at some point of time. Whose purpose would it serve if thousands of parents join the bandwagon of their children on the streets? Not the government's, we can say for sure.
Is the “vested quarter” with help from some cops in question trying to put parents up against the government then?
We the parents know who belong to this vested group. We the journalists know who they are. We, the eyewitnesses, know who they are. We believe police too know who they are.
The government must also know who they are, if it already doesn't. Do the profiling of these attacking thugs and the cops present with them to reconfirm who belong to the vested quarter.
Sooner the government does that the better it is for averting a possible disaster.