Recently the Prime Minister Sk. Hasina reaffirmed “There is also a government directive for preserving 30 percent quota for the Freedom Fighters and the children of the martyred Freedom Fighters in government service,” She also said the Freedom Fighter’s quota in government jobs is not maintained in many places and the government would take necessary steps so that it is maintained. The PM also ordered, and even incase of non availability, the quota of Freedom Fighters will remain open and must not be filled up from any other means.
Besides, Sheikh Hasina said, the highest 32-year age has been fixed for the Freedom Fighters’ offspring for entering into the government jobs.
Disputes: The age limit must be 37 years because they were deprived of the facility since lat 37 years.
The Prime Minister also affirmed a project has been undertaken to build Muktijoddha Complex in each district side by side with formation of Bangladesh Muktijoddha Kalyan Trust for the greater benefit of the country’s best sons.
Disputes: There must be a Veteran Muktijoddah home (dormitory type/shelter) in each district with full facilities to accommodate in secured freedom fighters within the proposed complex.
She said that the government took different steps for welfare of the distressed freedom fighters. Honorarium of the freedom fighters has been increased to Taka 1,500 from Taka 900 in 2009-10 fiscal year and the process for increasing the allowances is going on. Besides, she said, the number of recipients of the allowances has been enhanced to 1.25 lakh from 1 lakh.
“The allowance for martyred Freedom Fighters’ families has been raised to Taka 7,020 from Taka 5,850”, she said.
Disputes: Not enough because of prevailing market situation.
Sheikh Hasina said the government has also waived the 200 unit electricity bill and gas bill with one burner of the war-wounded Freedom Fighters and martyred families.
After long 35 years, the Prime Minister said, abandoned houses were given to 142 war-wounded and martyred Freedom Fighters’ families at a token price like that in 1972. The holding taxes of the houses up to 1500 sft of the war-wounded Freedom Fighters and martyred families have also been waived, she said.
Disputes: What about the others? Within the ministry there must be a cell to invite application from freedom fighters to rehabilitate either in abandoned homes or flats. Among the Freedom Fighter if any one intended for or really in-need of a plot of land or residential plot in any residential area or housing complex, he must get it one special consideration at a token money or specially subsidized prices.
The Prime Minister also said that training and micro-credit facilities are being provided to the insolvent Freedom Fighters and their offspring for self-reliance through BRDB and Youth Development Department.
Regarding the burial of Sector Commanders at Chandrima Uddayan, she expressed doubt over the presence of the body of Ziaur Rahman into the coffin as his (Zia) wife, sons and all others could not see it at the time of burial. So, she said, doubt also prevails about other sector commander’s desire to be buried at the Chandrima Udyan. “As Ziaur Rahman killed sector commanders Colonel Taher and Brigadier General Khaled Mosharraf, so their family members would not agree to bury them beside Ziaur Rahman’s grave,” she said.
Disputes: Govt. must arrange and specify a plot of land for the final rest of the Sector Commanders at their choice in the city centre even in the Osmai Uddayan without any controversy and no body should forget Gen. Ziaur Rahman also was a Sector Commander.
The Minister in charge of Muktijoddah Montronaloy said, the government will unlist 62,000 fake freedom fighters from the list who were included during jote government and a final survey will conduct to include if any genuine freedom fighter left behind or not included in the list.
He also assured the number of Freedom Fighters will increase for availing honorarium from 100,000 to 125,000 very soon. The total number of disabled Freedom Fighters is 5,300 in the country.
He also said the government also planning to set up a 50 bed modern hospital for the treatment of Freedom Fighters and their family and 4% of toll collected from the markets of nation wide was also go directly to the Muktijoddah Songshod for distributing to the needy Freedom Fighters for their house building, marriage & education of their children.
Disputes: As most of the Freedom Fighters already reached minimum at their 60’s, so they are almost at the door step of their final journey/ destination and at this circumstances they need no individual hospital facility, rather they need in every hospital through out the country should maintain 2 to 4 beds (based on the size of the hospital) reserved for the sick Freedom Fighters. No public or private hospital could deny any service including providing 100% free treatment to a Freedom Fighter. It is the right of a Veteran Freedom Fighter world wide. No body should forget that the beneficiary of independent Bangladesh and the position and the opportunity are being hold either those in power or in opposition or in administration because of the supreme sacrifice and total devotion & utmost contribution of the Freedom Fighters!
Keeping so many organizations like Muktijoddah Kollyan Trust, Muktijoddah Songshod and many more for only 100,000 – 150,000 Freedom Fighters do nothing for the general Freedom Fighters but encourages the misappropriation of money, crime, grouping, lobbing etc among some of the freedom fighters which need to be abolished. All activities for the welfare of Freedom Fighters should be placed under a single organization either the Ministry it self or a High Powered Cell under Prime Minister’s Secretariat (most deserved) and executed through Zilla & Upo-Zilla administration. For over all services to be rendered to the Freedom Fighters an amount like 0.5% of national budget to be kept reserved to spend for the welfare of the Freedom Fighters. In addition recover all the enterprises and properties of Muktijoddah Kollyan Trust or collect the cost at present market value and deposit in an account for Freedom Fighters in Bangladesh Bank and the proceeds to be spent for the wellbeing of the Freedom Fighters.
A Computerized Digital Data-Base of the Freedom Fighters under a multipurpose application software must be made and stored in respective levels of service position after a quick and final scrutinizing search nation wide followed by colored photo ID like that of voter ID and secured Credit Card to ensure the services they ought to get even any cash subsidy allowed by the government like Food Stamp/Lone Star.
There should be a get-together/reunion of all the Freedom Fighters with the head of the Government at least once in a year under government management and expenses to show the honor and respect to them possibly on Independence Day or Victory Day celebration.
Covering all the existing, proposed & future facilities to be awarded to the Freedom Fighters, there should be an Executive Order immediately followed by a law to be passed in Parliament at the soonest to pay due respect & moral duty to the golden sons of the soil, the Veteran Freedom Fighters of Bangladesh.