The conspiracies by four leaders of Mujib Bahini were more successful in creating a distance between Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and Tajuddin Ahmad, than Khandaker Mushtaq Ahmed's ploys, Professor Emeritus Serajul Islam Choudhury said yesterday.
Referring to SA Karim's book "Sheikh Mujib, Triumph and Tragedy", the professor recounted how negatively the four leaders, their names not mentioned, presented Ahmad to Bangabandhu in the former's absence.
Prof Islam delved into the political career of Tajuddin Ahmad, the country's first prime minister, while delivering the Tajuddin Ahmad memorial lecture at the Asiatic Society of Bangladesh in the capital.
Based mostly on Tajuddin Ahmad's diary accounts, Prof Islam drew on the thoughts that brought Ahmad to politics and led him towards a "left-leaning nationalist" ideology.
The professor said the rift between Bangabandhu and Ahmad occurred as they differed on the issues of war crimes trial, creating a national militia with freedom fighters, accepting aid from the World Bank, and forming Baksal.
Though Ahmad initiated the Collaborators Act of 1972, he grew frustrated when Bangabandhu declared a general amnesty for many war criminals in 1973 without consulting him, he said.
Instead of forming a militia with freedom fighters, according to Ahmad's initiative, Rakkhi Bahini was created with members from Mujib Bahini, said the educationist. Ahmad also opposed World Bank aid and termed Baksal a "sohomoron party" (party of collective death), he said.
Prof Islam said an effective opposition party was required after liberation to point out the faults of the government. "An opposition party is a must in bourgeois democracy. But we haven't got it yet and that is why we are facing so many problems."
Agreeing with Islam, Barrister Amirul Islam, said, "A government and an opposition, both loyal to the constitution, are required for running the state." That has not happened in Bangladesh, he added.