The 36th death anniversary of Dr. Aleem Al-Razee, a celebrated jurist, parliamentarian, educationist and philanthropist, will be observed on Sunday with due solemnity in the country.
A legendary figure, Razee was at the forefront of all political struggles and socio-cultural movements unleashed in the country to win democracy, human rights and freedom of expression of the people.
As an independent member of the then Pakistan National Assembly during 1965 to 1969, Dr. Razee played a sheet anchor role not only in defending freedom and democracy but also in pleading the cause of the then East Pakistani Bengalees who were subjected to unjust domination, discrimination and deprivation by the ruling elites of the then West Pakistan in all walks of life.
His forceful portrayal of the growing disparity between the Bengalees and non-Bengalees and the prediction in 1965 that Pakistan could disintegrate along the East and West divide fuelled demands for an independent Bangladesh that eventually kindled the spark of liberation war culminating in the emergence of a new nation state of Bangladesh.
Razee was a leading honorary defence counsel in the historical Agartala Case in 1967 in which Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and others were charged with treason against the state of Pakistan. In the face of intimidation and life threats, he defended the accused in a landmark trial that lasted till 1969.
Razee was also a prolific writer who authored several books. His well documented and carefully researched monumental work, "The Constitutional Glimpses of Martial Law in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh" published posthumously by the University Press Ltd. Dhaka was hailed as a charter of freedom for the fledging and fragile democracies in the region. One of his works of fiction in Bengali 'On Trekking through to Arakan' was set in the backdrop of the Second World War that left a trail of humanitarian disaster in Burma (now Myanmar).
Different voluntary, socio-cultural organizations and educational institutions have chalked out separate programmes to mark the occasion.
Discussion meetings on the life and works of Razee are being organised among others by the Shandhani National Eve Donation Society (SNEDS). City Law College. Dhaka, Nagarpur Government College, Nagarpur and Dr. Aleem Al-Razee High School, Lawhati. Tangail.
Dr. Aleem-Al-Razee Memorial Council members will lay floral wreaths and offer 'fateha' at Razee's graveyard in Banani in the morning and hold milad mahfil in Razee's remembrance on the day in his native village., said a press relesae.
In a message released to the press, SNEDS president Prof. Dr. Tossadek Hussain Siddiqui and secretary general Dr. Joynal Islam appealed to the public to come forward and donate eyes posthumously to restore eye sight to over one and a half million blind people in the country by emulating the noble example set by Dr. Razee.
Also an Islamic and Arabic scholar of great repute, Dr. Razee was the third person in Bangladesh to donate his eyes breaking the taboo that Islam forbids donations of eye and other organs.
Source: United News of Bangladesh