The most progressive, articulate, inspired and dynamic segment of the country’s population is the student’s community. A country’s hopes and aspirations largely depend on this community. It has been a matter of great regret that country of Bangladesh has failed to practice a good student politics after becoming a democratic nation. The latest clash in the University of Chittagong has again showed the ill practice of this nasty student politics in a devastating manner. An altercation between two politically affiliated student parties took two lives and injured around forty others. Bangladesh Chhatra League, the pro-government student party and Islami Chhatra Shibir, the Jamati student chapter engaged in a fierce clash which led to this bloodshed. From the video footage and the photographs published in the media we saw the students with manual arms and other stuffs vandalizing the environment of a university. The tumultuous student politics took lives not only in CU campus but also in many universities and colleges of the country.
It is time to rethink about the student politics in Bangladesh. The government and university authorities fail miserably to deliver the responsibility of maintaining the peaceful academic atmosphere in the campuses and to continue the academic exercises unhindered.
Banning student politics is not the answer. A debate is needed to be created among the citizens how to contain violence in the campus and a dialogue is needed to develop among different political groups for coming to a consensus regarding the form of student politics in the country and a thorough discussion of the issue is needed to be made in the parliament to define the form of student politics in Bangladesh.
Current student unrest not only disturbing the academic environment of the institutions and depriving our future generation to nourish their potential, it is also jeopardizing the possibility of Bangladesh to develop into a mid-income country by 2021. The environment of research is also affected in the universities by the nasty student politics.
We must rethink about the objective of student politics of our country. There is no burden on the student to liberalize the country and there is no burden on the students to establish democracy in our country. Now the burden on the students is to develop themselves as the worthy citizens and leaders for the future of Bangladesh.
The character that the present student politics takes up not only is worrying for the present but it is more worrying for the future thinking that what type of leadership is waiting for us in the future.
The present political leadership of both government and opposition is also at stake to develop future leadership for the country who will be decent, honest, committed to democracy and peoples’ welfare . But what are we seeing? The picture is in absolute contradiction to our expectation.
To come out of this quagmire, the student politics must be dissociated from the mainstream politics must be dissociated from business interests, mainly confined to the benefits of the students and only regular students would be allowed to do politics in the campus. A line is needed to be drawn between the campus politics and politics outside the campus.
Student politics is also associated with the political affiliation of the teachers. To clean the student politics political affiliation of the teachers is also need to be reoriented. The teachers should dissociate themselves from mainstream politics in the campus and should not use the students to keep their influence in the campus intact.
For all this, a consensus is important among the academicians, political groups, citizens, guardians and students.