Right Cause, Wrong Ambassador

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The decision to suspend combined admission test and imposing local quota system for Shahjalal University of Science and technology ( SUST) is a bbackward step and extremely worrisome development. This kind of development will have a long lasting effect on our higher education system and is a very ominous sign. Sensible, reasonable and education people concerned about Bangladesh should raise their voice against such change.

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I should be very happy at Dr Zafar Iqbal’s stand on this issue. Here he is standing for cause that really matters and is of future significance. His celebrity status should have helped the cause. But I am more worried at him throwing his weight behind this cause. I fear, by his support, he will do more harm to the issue than help it.

Dr. Zafar Iqbal had great following among the young people in Bangladesh. He could have become the universal role model for young Bangladeshis. But by his narrow politicking, blind partisan writings and activities – rather than becoming the role model, he has become a subject of hatred to a big chunk of Bangladeshi youth. Dr Iqbal never wanted to become the role model to whole Bangladesh, rather he opted to become a celebrity for a very narrow group of urban youth. He is now a lighting rod, his names incites passion among everyone. But I am afraid he incites a passion of hatred in the majority and a passion of love in a much smaller proportion.

Now I am afraid that – although Dr Iqbal has finally stood up for the right cause, because Dr. Iqbal is in favor of the cause, many youth will support the other side with the wrong cause. Now they will opt for the idiotic ideas of quota and local admission test for SUST. This is human nature. By supporting this good cause, Dear professor Iqbal, you have just done an irreparable harm to the cause. I really wish, dear Professor Iqbal, instead of doing all the self promoting drama of resignation and public letter, you could have used the good terms you have with your leaders, The Prime Minister and Education Minister and convince them no to change the rule. That would have been more effective.

You supporting the cause, Dr Iqbal, is equivalent to Iran’s Ahmednadaze or Al Qaeda leader endorsing in US Presidential election. Thanks, but no thanks.

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