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The Mother

Story Mother Author: Md. Abdul Muktadir

Amid various discussions and criticism, school teacher Nasreen Akhtar finally announced the formation of “Safe Bribery Association”. He had been talking about the formation of this association from his Facebook account for a few days. Although his relatives and friends-colleagues were forbidding him, he did not feel the need to wear it. Calling himself the president of the association, he announced the formation of the association live from his Facebook account. He also said that this association will not only be virtual. He will set up the association’s office in Durgapur upazila town.
She was an assistant teacher of Alipur High School in Durgapur Upazila. Currently there is no such job. Now she is the head teacher of a kindergarten school in Alipore. So his number of followers and friends is not less. So it didn’t take long for his announcement to be shared. Many people started commenting on this post. Some of their comments are:

A fellow teacher at her current school commented, ‘Our madam has quite a sense of humour.’

Another teacher commented, ‘Wow, extreme level of entertainment.’
A former school teacher commented, ‘Don’t you currently have a job?’
A relative commented, ‘You will be punished if you post that.’
Many comments started coming like this. Nasreen Akhtar did not respond to any comments. He knows that if you want to do something, you don’t have to listen to other people’s words.

Two days later he made another post. He explained the aims and objectives of Safe Bribery Transactions Association. This post spread faster than the previous post.

Four days passed. A call came on Nasreen Akhtar’s phone. A reporter from a local paper wants to talk to him. He was happy to hear the journalist. He thought to himself, let it be good. Talking to the journalist will be beneficial. He asked the journalist to come tomorrow afternoon.

 

Next day afternoon. Nasreen Akhtar sits at her Alipore residence and waits for the reporter. A little later the journalist came. Seated him in his sitting room. The journalist said to him
– ‘Thank you very much for giving me time.’
-‘Okay, you got my phone number from school surely?’
-‘Yes yes.’
-‘Surely you are curious about the “Safe Bribery Association”?’
– ‘Yes, yes. If you would elaborate on this matter…’
-‘The matter is not that complicated. A common thing. In fact, the purpose of this association is to help those who give or take bribes.’
-‘Why! Why would you help people with something as unethical as bribery?’
-‘See in our society there are some things that are “unethical” or “harmful to society”, which we have legitimized under the pretext of reality. Like interest, dowry etc. They don’t matter to us anymore. So I think since bribery has become a part of our culture, we should also accept it socially.’
-‘But who will help the bribery association?’
– ‘Bribery Society will help those who want to do bribery but don’t have the courage.’
-‘I mean, explain a little…?’
-‘Suppose you went to work in a government office. Now the concerned officer in charge cannot ask you for a bribe to get the job done and you cannot even offer a bribe in advance. As a result, day after day passes but your work is not done. Again suppose the officer asks for a bribe, but you are not willing to pay the bribe. That’s why your work is not done. If you call us in these situations, we will help.’
-‘But in this case the ACC or any other government law officer won’t stop you?’
-‘Even in this case, I am trying to get my association approved by the government.’
-‘Do you think the government will allow you to do these things?’
-‘That’s the next thing. But I’m not giving up hope.’
– ‘Didn’t your expectations become a little ambitious?’
-‘Why? Drug consumption is prohibited in our country, but in Dhaka city, the approved bar is continuing its business!
-‘That’s for some local and foreign people…’
-‘This is the line. You have admitted that the same act may be forbidden for some and perfect for others. The same is true of my bribery association.’
– ‘Not that, I understand. But isn’t this society encouraging everyone to do a negative thing?’

-‘You will see after a few days…my association is not working well or badly!?’
The news was published in the district paper the next day. Two days later, two papers in Dhaka mentioned Nasreen Akhtar’s news. The news of Safe Bribery Transaction Association also started to be shared on Facebook IDs.
A week passed. Nasreen Akhtar has received many phone calls every day for the past one week. He would not receive calls from known numbers. When he saw an unknown number, he received the call and wanted to know first whether he had called to inquire about the news of the Safe Bribery Association? If the caller says yes then he is asking to come to his Facebook ID or his office. He has set up the association’s office on the ground floor of his house. A boy has been appointed as an office assistant there. The unemployed boy named Sihab is very happy to get the job. He proudly tells people that he works as an office assistant in the office of Safe Bribery Association. People who come to the office just talk to Nasreen Akhtar How does safe bribery society work?

A news was printed in a local paper of Durgapur today.

“Surveyor Nurul Haque of Durgapur Upazila Land Office has been suspended for bribery. The complaint against him is that he accepted bribe from businessman Anisul Mahmud to register the 88th century land of Chaumuhani Mauza of Durgapur upazila by providing false information. A committee has been formed from the Deputy Commissioner’s office to investigate Nurul Haque.”
Nasreen Akhtar read the news while sitting at school. He was upset.
After coming home in the afternoon, he shared the online version of the news on his Facebook wall and wrote, “He has been expelled for bribery. Ena was fired, but businessman Anisul was not!”
Many comments were coming in favor of this post. Some said, “When you go to the government office, the officers take bribes by holding people hostage, the surveyor should have been punished!”
And some said, “How did the surveyor expose the existence of a safe bribe transaction society?”
Nasreen Akhtar gave another post the next day –
“Durgapur surveyor Nurul Haque dismissed for taking bribe. As everyone knows that government officials are carriers of corruption, there is no one to speak for this Nurul Haque. Nurul Haque has irregularly registered the 88th century land in the name of the fake owner by recommending it to Mr. Aceland in exchange of money. Nurul Haque received money so he should be punished. However, businessman Anisul Mahmud benefited himself with money, why should he not be punished? Does everyone know the inside story? I do not know what the honorable DC will decide? But whatever the decision, let there be no unilateral punishment?”

He started reading many like comments on this post. Many people started condemning him and started commenting that he was singing the praises of the bribe takers.
Some people said that Nasreen Akhtar has started taking bribes.
A week passed since he shared this post. As many people spoke in favor of Nasreen Akhtar, many comments started pouring in against it. Many people started saying that bribery association is supporting bribe takers, Nasreen Akhtar should be punished.

The next day, Durgapur paper published news about Nasreen Akhtar and Nurul Haque.

“An assistant teacher in Durgapur has formed a safe bribery association. He is currently working in Alipore Kindergarten School. He says this association helps in bribery transactions. A few days ago, Durgapur Upazila Land Office Surveyor Nurul Haque was expelled for accepting bribe. An investigation by the DC office is underway against Nurul Haque. At this time, Nasreen Akhtar is singing Safai for Nurul Haque. Some prominent people of Durgapur and Alipur told this reporter, ‘It is not right that everyone can do whatever they want using Facebook. Time has come to take action against Nasreen Akhtar.

The next day at noon. Nasreen Akhtar got a call from a television channel in Dhaka.
-‘Hello, are you Nasreen Akhtar, the president of Safe Bribery Association, madam?’
-‘Yes yes.’
-‘Tonight’s talk show on our channel will discuss Safe Bribery Association. If you could spare an hour, we would appreciate it.’
-‘Talkshow means live talk show?’
– ‘Yes, yes.’
-‘Okay.’
-‘So you are staying at nine o’clock tonight but…’
-‘There is no internet or computer at my house. How will communication be?’
– ‘Okay, our Durgapur representative will contact you.’
An hour later he got a phone call from another number. This is the guy from that channel. It was agreed with him that he would bring home the camera and computer at 8:30 tonight.

The man came at eight o’clock. Nasreen Akhtar told Sihab earlier. Sihab and that man set the camera and laptop and sat in Nasreen Akhtar’s living room. As usual, the program started at nine o’clock.
The presenter of the program started – ‘Today we will talk about a different topic. Many of you may know that an ordinary school teacher in an ordinary upazila called Durgapur established a safe bribery association. It has spread through social media. There is a lot of debate going on about it. I will talk about how reasonable, how moral or unethical the matter is today. First of all welcome our first guest distinguished social worker Ahsan Ali. Well Ahsan Sahib, you must have heard about Safe Bribery Association. Talk about their goals and objectives. How do you see the matter?’
Ahsan Ali said, ‘I am surprised at what level our society has reached! How can an ordinary school teacher from a place of poverty abandon her morals and form such a despicable association? We have already been exposed to corruption at all levels. Morality, honesty, social values ​​are becoming worthless now. If there is such an institution on him, a terrible future awaits us!’
The presenter said, ‘But Nasreen Akhtar has given some arguments in favor of this association, what is your opinion about them?’
Ahsan Ali said, ‘What he said was that he would help in the bribery transaction. Why can’t any initiative be taken to stop bribery from helping Leneden?’

The presenter said, ‘Well, we will take the answer directly from Nasreen Akhtar. Now we will connect with our Alipore representative. There is the 2nd guest of our today’s show Nasreen Akhtar, President of Safe Bribery Transactions Association. Hello Nasreen Akhtar can you hear us?’
Nasreen Akhtar said in front of the camera from her home, ‘Yes.’
The presenter said, “Ahsan Sahib, our guest here, is saying why you are talking about cooperation in bribery without taking the initiative to stop bribery?”
Nasreen Akhtar said, “Bribery has been spread at every level of our country. Bribery has become an unwritten custom. I can’t stop bribery alone if I want to…’
Ahsan Ali said, ‘Madam, if you can’t stop bribery, why do you want to help in bribery?’
Nasreen Akhtar said, ‘Look, when we face any problem, we try our best to solve it. When we fail, we leave it to fate. Someone insulted the government again and left. So I think that since it is not possible for us to stop bribery, we should accept it and bring it into a discipline.
Ahsan Ali started laughing softly.
The presenter said, ‘What kind of discipline are you talking about in bribery?’
Nasreen Akhtar said, ‘When something cannot be completely eradicated, it is chained by various boundaries. My plan is the same. For example, to stop theft, to employ the thief without punishing the thief.’
Ahsan Ali said, ‘So have you thought of a legitimate way for bribe takers? In my opinion this should not be the case. If you do that then I think ACC will not release you.’
Nasreen Akhtar said, ‘Ahsan Sahib, do you think bribery is something heinous?’
Ahsan Ali said, ‘Of course, bribes and those who speak for bribes!’
Nasreen Akhtar said, ‘Ahsan Sahib, we are all responsible for this culture of bribery while doing any work. I mean apart from the officers we who go for various services but also offer bribe to the officer in charge to get some unethical personal benefits. That you have come to this position today, can you say that you have never once in your life given or taken a bribe to get a job done?’
After listening to Nasreen Akhtar, the smile on the presenter’s face disappeared a little. On the other hand, Ahsan Ali was not heard on the screen. The presenter tried but could not get her connection. Then he said, ‘It seems that the line has been cut. Well ok we don’t have a phone call from the audience this time. Hello, ask your name.’
The visitor said, ‘I am Zaheer Ali. My question is to Nasreen madam. If you run this association, can we go there? I mean can you solve our problem?’
Nasreen Akhtar said, I do not know where you live? But if you come to our office, we will definitely listen to your problem.’
Another viewer said, ‘I want to say to the presenter, Nasreen Akhtar wants a little publicity like Hero Alam. nothing else. You television people better ignore them. They will be subdued by then.’
The presenter said, ‘Okay, let’s see we are at the end. Dear viewers, the world is so diverse because there are different kinds of people in the world. If all men were the same, it seems that nothing new would be created. I think Nasreen Akhtar is such a female character. We will understand what exactly he wants to do in a few days. Ending here today. Thank you all.’

The next day a phone call came to Nasreen Akhtar. The OC of Durgapur police station called. He asked him to come to the police station to talk. Nasreen Akhtar realized that her playing time was over. He took some clothes in his bag and said to Sihab, ‘Stay here for a few days. I may have to stay in jail for a while.’
Sihab got tears in his eyes hearing his madam’s words. He said, ‘I will go with you.’
He said, ‘Damn boy who will stay at home? You have to stay. And yes, don’t sit down until I come. Stay up at night with all the keys.’

Place Durgapur police station. A little while ago, Nasreen Akhtar came to the police station. Now the OC is sitting in front of Mr. Nasreen Akhtar looked at him. The man is younger than the officers. Seems to have just been promoted. It was the OC Saheb who started the conversation –
‘Madam thank you for coming yourself? Otherwise I would feel ashamed…’
-‘Why? Why should you be ashamed to catch a criminal?’
-‘It is a shame for me to be a student and pick up my teacher from home.’
-‘Glad to honor me.’
– ‘Madam probably did not recognize me? Of course, how do you know? Among so many students, one student who studied for a year should not be remembered.’
– ‘Were you my student?’
– Yes ma’am. I studied in class six in Alipore school.’
-‘Never mind… I can’t remember.’
-‘But I recognized your picture. There are orders to arrest you. I wanted you to come yourself. Then you don’t have to be rude anymore.’
-‘Who gave the order?’
– ‘Sorry madam can’t be said.’
-‘Okay.’
– ‘Well, did you do it knowingly that you formed the association?
-‘Yes.
-‘Why did you do it?’
-‘I hope you know everything about me and then brought me here. So why are you asking again unnecessarily?’

– ‘Madam, why don’t you do this? These associations tommy?’
-‘Even if you don’t…but…’
-‘But what?’
– ‘How to save my son?’
– ‘Your son? Tell me what happened to him?’

Nasreen Akhtar began her son’s story. OC sir patiently listened to madam. Then he said, ‘Madam, it will take time to solve your problem. Never mind till then you have to stay in police custody.’
Nasreen Akhtar smiled softly and said, ‘Why did anyone file a case?’
The OC said, ‘Yes, someone named Anisul Mahmud filed a case. Moreover, Mr. DC has asked to keep an eye on you.’

A month passed. Durgapur land office surveyor Nurul Haque came to the police station. He faced Nasreen Akhtar. He said
– ‘What are these? What is the bribery association again? What an abomination!’
– ‘Why can you take bribes and I can’t form associations?’
– ‘You accept the situation I have been subjected to?’
-‘All corrupt criminals have ready arguments for their crimes.’
-‘But I didn’t ask for a bribe. That man offered me!’
– ‘Why do you accept?’
-‘I did not accept. He left the money on my table and left. I kept it with me to give back to him.’
-‘Where have you been these days?’
-‘I wandered here and there. But why are you here?’
-‘Hey, all this is to get rid of you…’
-‘What do you mean?’
– ‘I don’t have money to pay a bribe. I had to come in here to free you.’
Surveyor Nurul Haque couldn’t hold back the tears anymore. He said, ‘Mom, why did you do this? Will you still have your job?’
Nasreen Akhtar said, ‘You stupid boy, you need a job more than me. I educated you by working. I taught at Survey Institute. you get a job Tell me how many more jobs? One day I had to retire.’
-‘So you will accept such a humiliating farewell?’
– ‘Abandon my words, what about you?’
-‘I returned the bribe money. I told everything to the investigation committee and DC. He asked to join the job again.’
-‘I’m happy.’
-‘But I don’t know how much money it will take to release you. Everyone has heard about your association. I don’t know how long I can get you out.’
-‘Hey stupid boy, I will get rid of you the same way. Have people all gone bad? The Safe Bribery Association has woken up everyone…’

(finished)