Remembering the noted journalist Safiuddin Ahmed

Suee Prue Ching Marma
A famous journalist, former student leader of language activist of’52Safiuddin Ahmed was born on November 1, 1922 under the district of Munshigonj in Lohajong at Haridia village. His first death anniversary was celebrated on October 22. He was buried in this special day in 2009 in Ajimpur. graveyard dhaka, along with his other family members.

Being attracted in the anti-British revolution by his father Jalkadar Dewan, only at the age of 17’s Safiuddin Ahmed, along with his elder brother joined Lahore Conference in 1940. His ideology and favourite party was congress & became the member of All Indian Congress in 1942. Afterwards, he joined the former conference of Netrokona including Tevaga Revolution. He was apprehended in 1948 on the charge of protesting the slogan, “Urdu will be the only state language”. In 1952 he participated in the language movement as a General Secretary of student forum from the Jagannath College of Dhaka.

In 1962 Safiuddin Ahmed along with 17 others including Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Tafazzal Hossain Manik Miah, Abul Monsur Ahmed and Kafil Uddin Chowdhury were sent to custody on the charge of student revolution against the Commission Education of Hamudur Rahman. In this way from 1947 to 1969 for a total of 10 years at different period hi was in jail in Dhaka, Chittagong, Sylhet and Rajshahi and experienced a custody life and went for a hunger strike for 130 days.

Safiuddin Ahmed was tortured many times at different period in the custody though he was saved during the bullet rain on the imprisonds in Rajshahi at Khapra Ward. He fought with pen in self disguise as he was top in the list of Pakistan Military and anti-war force in Munshigonj Mohokuma in Liberation War in 1971. He played an important role in bringing awareness to the common people of the country taking the newspaper and rural journalism as a service.

He entered into the world of journalism being the representative of the weekly journal Janojudha by Communist Party of India (CPI) published from Calcutta and Peoples’ War in English version published from Bombay when he was a student of class 8. Then besides the student politics he joined as a reporter of the Daily Azad, the Daily Millat, the Daily Amar Desh and the Weekly Ittefaq published from Calcutta before the partition of the country in 1947. Afterwards, he got a golden opportunity to work with the Daily Songbad, the Daily Pakistan (later on the Daily Bangla), the Observer (Pakistan), the Daily Ittefaq, and the Morning News published from Dhaka after the partition of the country in 1947. Besides, as a journalist he was closely connected with different News Agencies like UPP, ENA, APP and BSS.

He continued journalism even after the independence of the country. He worked as a roving representative of the Daily Janota during his period in the Daily Bangla. Meanwhile, he worked at different journal and News Agencies of foreign countries. He was not only a journalist, but also a skillful and hardworking organizer. He was one of the founders of the Journalist Association of East Pakistan. He was elected as the General Secretary of the organization and he was also elected many times as the President of Bangladesh Journalist Association. It is he who worked relentlessly for the establishment of proper salary and dignity of rural journalists. Being the member of Press Commission and Council he worked sincerely for the implementation of salary and Wage Board assigned by government and for the formation of the structure of salary of journalists. At the same time, he was member of National Press Club, the founder of the Press Club of Munshigonj and the former President of the Press Club of Bikrompur.

He was the representative from Bangladesh in the 26 nations Conference of Southeast Asian journalists organized by International Press Institute. He was awarded the first prize for the speech competition on rural journalism of Bangladesh in the conference held in Srilanka. Besides, for the contribution to journalism he was awarded with the Janakantha Merit Honour ’98 Achievement Medal in 1999, Maulana Maniruzzaman (Chittagong) Gold Medal, Maulana Bhasani Gold Medal, and Tafazzal Hossain Manik Miah Medal in 2002. He was honoured with various other awards including Bangladesh Sufi Council 2006 Medal and Atish Diponkor Medal. As a famous journalist of Bangladesh and honourable person of Bikrompur he was given a warm reception on behalf of Bikrompur Conference in 2000 in Calcutta India . As a language activist he was given a warm reception by different organizations. In 1999 the language activist Safiuddin Ahmed was given a public reception on behalf of the inhabitants of Shariotpur on the occasion of Golden Jubilee Celebration of language movement organized by district administration.

Different organizations along with Press Club and on behalf of his family different programmes had been scheduled to take place on the occasion of the first death anniversary of Safiuddin Ahmed. In this special occasion a supplement is going to be published by Bikrompur Barta, a Weekly Publication established by him. All the willing writers across the country are cordially requested to contact over the cell number 01711-112218 for the publication of unknown information regarding Safiuddin Ahmed. N. A. Shukti, the youngest son of Safiuddin Ahmed has requested the citizens of the country for wishing peace to the dead soul of his father. He has wished that his father, the lifelong revolutionary, student leader, language activist on the whole a celebrated journalist, will remain forever in the hearts of the citizens of Bangladesh for his sacrifice and ideology.

Writer : Vice Principal, Jyoti Vidya Niketon, Dhamrai, Dhaka.
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