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Letter to a budding autocrat

by Israfil Khosru

Dear all-powerful daughter
of the nation,

AS OUR country is burning and we seem to be gradually heading towards a one-sided election, I write this letter to you to draw your kind attention. Don’t listen to all those liberal democratic elements (both national and foreign) exasperated at the possibility of an election without the main opposition. As history suggests, we, the people of Bangladesh, prefer to be ruled with an iron fist. The notion of democracy is merely an impediment to harnessing our creative core and overall development. Your idea of democracy is what suits us best because the suspension of the common man’s right can eventually lead to him being a true patriot and a believer in nationalism.
Your strategy to introduce the 15th amendment and then going on to make the best use of it was a touch of pure genius. It shows that you have the acumen and conviction to lead us with efficiency and utter disregard to what we think. This is what we crave as citizens and long for. The main opposition does not deserve to be on the streets simply because it might accidentally lead to continuation of democracy and provide the people with a viable choice, which is the last thing we need at this juncture of our political growth. Hence, I vehemently support your strategy to marginalise the opposition grassroots and lock up their leaders before they actually get to know what really hit them. They deserve to be locked up even if they are seen in public and harassed till the point they realise politics is meant for a single party in this country, that very party, which is the sole agent of the spirit of 1971, while the rest are all non-believers. Your party is our only ray of hope.
While Jamaat and Shibir are unleashing a series of terror attacks on general citizens, it must be made clear that the people of this country prefer to be terrorised by the Chhatra League rather than some misguided Islamists who have lost their right to be in politics. The general people are extremely pleased with the law and order situation of this country, where the occasional murders and kidnappings are just mere generic occurring and one just have to learn to live with it. The law enforcement agencies are doing an incredible job of fulfilling your agenda and in the process making the people of this country feel safe and secure. The attack of the Chhatra League on opposition lawyers on the Supreme Court premises under the supervision of the law enforcing agencies was much needed and timely. In addition, various murder cases including that of Sagar and Runi and the disappearance of certain opposition leaders are not matters of national importance and accordingly not dealt with. You certainly have your priorities straight and that is yet another mark of a great leader.
I also salute your audacity to hold the opposition leader hostage in her own home. The people of this country have not witnessed such an act of courage in a long time and here you have displayed yet another characteristic of a natural and desirably autocratic leader. The opposition leader out of mere frustration mentioned that the name of a particular place in the map of Bangladesh will be changed. I suggest, clearly out of spite, you make that place the capital of Bangladesh simply because you are in a position to do so. There is no better way to get your message across.
I would like to end my letter by saying how much we expect from you our exalted leader. We expect you to continue ignoring us, excluding us and finally rule us with absolute power. Feel free to exert force on us when required and lastly free us from this curse of voting. In short, rule us and free us as the country only belongs to you.
Yours truly,
An overeager citizen and a humble subject Israfil Khosru is a businessman and runs a youth-led think tank called The Bangladeshi.

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