Zia murals gone from BNS | The Daily Star
11:00 PM, August 04, 2009 / LAST MODIFIED: 11:00 PM, August 04, 2009

Zia murals gone from BNS

Khaleda's name struck off foundation stone of Dinajpur Medical College Hospital


The mosaic portrait of late president The mosaic portrait of late president Ziaur Rahman used to be on the right of the giant torch. The file photo, inset, shows the two leaders' portraits. The vandalised foundation stone, left, at Dinajpur Medical College Hospital building. Photo: STAR

At the directive of National Sports Council authorities, three mosaic portraits of late president Ziaur Rahman were removed from the Bangabandhu National Stadium and destroyed early yesterday.
Meanwhile, unknown criminals Monday evening vandalised the foundation stone of the "under-construction" main building of Dinajpur Medical College Hospital. Former prime minister Khaleda Zia had laid the stone while inaugurating the building on October 10, 2006.
Over telephone administrator of Bangabandhu National Stadium Jahangir Alam told The Daily Star that the portraits were removed as per the directive of the council. He refused to make any further comments.
Witnesses said one of the portraits was removed from the stands on the northern side, near the Baitul Mukarram Mosque, while another one from the VIP Gate on the southern end. The third one was removed from the second floor of the stadium.
Many shop owners at the stadium market said it seemed that the mosaic portraits were removed with drills during the night.
The portrait of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman were untouched. A large contingent of additional police was deployed in the stadium area yesterday after the mosaics were removed.
Even though additional police were deployed there, Commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police AKM Shahidul Hoque said he was unaware of the incident. "Nobody filed any complaint with us about the matter. If we receive any complaint, we will investigate the incident," he told The Daily Star.
Talking to The Daily Star, National Sports Council Deputy Director (admin) Ruhul Amin Hawlader said he had heard about the removal of the mosaic portraits and had also watched a news report on television. He, however, could not say whether it was the sports council's decision.
"The NSC secretary and other senior officials might know about it," he said.
Neither the state minister for sports nor the NSC secretary was available for making comments on the matter.
BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday condemned the incident and termed it an example of the autocratic attitude of the Awami League government.
Delwar said, "They are damaging the mosaic portraits only to erase the name of Zia and Khaleda Zia from our history."
While talking to reporters at BNP's central office in Naya Paltan, he said with instigation of the government the portraits were smashed.
"The government cannot avoid the responsibility," he said.
Dhaka National Stadium was renamed Bangabandhu National Stadium in 1997 when Awami League was in power. The portraits of BNP founder Ziaur Rahman were installed there in 2003, after BNP assumed power in 2001.
In April, the Khaleda Zia Hall of Sylhet MAG Osmani Medical College was renamed Bibi Ayesha Hall.
In 2006, newly established medical college in the Suhrawardi Hospital compound at Sher-e-Banglanagar was named after Khaleda Zia. A couple of months ago it was renamed Suhrawardi Medical College.
Our correspondent in Dinajpur reports: Some unidentified miscreants vandalised the foundation stone of the under-construction building of Dinajpur Medical College Hospital Monday evening.
The caretakers of the building, Masud and Rubel, who also witnessed the incident, told The Daily Star that eight to 10 people equipped with hammers vandalised the foundation stone around 7:30pm.
When they tried to resist, the miscreants assaulted them, they claimed.
Shah Abdul Ahad, director of Dinajpur Medical College, declined to comment on the matter.
On October 28, 2000 Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the construction work of the Medical College Hospital by laying a foundation stone. Late minister Khurshid Jahan Haque, elder sister of Khaleda Zia, on August 27, 2004 replaced the foundation stone with another one with her name on it.
Khaleda Zia about three years ago inaugurated the building, even though it was under construction then.
The building is yet to become operational.

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