Calling Out to the Youth
Photos: Kazi Tahsin Agaz Apurbo
“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
One year ago, the day before today, 26 January, was an important one. It was important for all those beings who did not have the power of speech and for those who did and spoke for those who did not.
Dog culling was regular in Dhaka city. Not only during mating seasons, but sometimes for no reason at all, dogs around the city, stray or not, would be captured by Dhaka City Corporation and killed. They would not be euthanised, or 'put down peacefully'- they were beaten to death with steal rods and what not. One individual, Rubaiya Ahmad, had to see her dog lying at the back of the Dhaka City Corporation truck, bloody and dead. Being a dog owner myself, I cannot comprehend the feeling of such a sight. Just listening to this story broke my heart into pieces. The thought still aches me.
Many dogs have had their lives saved due to banning of Dog culling.
Rubaiya then took it upon herself to stop this injustice from happening. Fighting all obstacles in her path, she went on, every day, to save the lives of these helpless beings. At the end of this war, she succeeded. With her organisiation, Obhoyaronno Animal Welfare Society, she secured Dhaka City Corporation's commitment to end dog killing in Dhaka. Obhoyaronno signed an MOU with Dhaka City Corporation (North) and Dhaka City Corporation (South) to manage the city's dog population on behalf of DCC, set up the country's first CNVR clinic in Boshila, Mohammapur to sterilise, vaccinate and treat street dogs, secured partnerships with government and international development agencies, secured partnerships with local academies and schools to deliver humane education for children and established the first Bangladeshi team of vets and para-vets trained from India on modern sterilisation and humane dog catching. On 26 January, 2012, she touched the hearts of millions across the country who have some sanity in their minds to realise that dogs, as humans, are a gift to the world from God.
Of course, dog culling has been reduced now to a considerable amount.
All living things deserve to live
But, with a heavy heart, I walk around the streets of Dhaka watching children, young students and even the elderly, treat these animals like they are garbage. There are cats and dogs, limping around the city with injuries and no one to help them. As much as I cry and whine about this to my parents and friends who understand my pain, there are very few around me who can feel what I feel. Being a growing nation, it is for the youth of this nation to be able to grasp the knowledge that we are no one to destroy or harm one of God's creations and that these very animals are what add to the beautiful ecosystem and nature that we have been blessed with.
I know countless people who have the fear of fur, who do not know how to take care of animals, who can't stand cleaning up after them, so on and so forth, but I also know that these people would never intentionally harm or hurt another living being. Even though dog culling has been banned, faith in humanity still slips away from me as I hear of parents of pet owners wanting to kill the kittens who are yet to be born from their pregnant cat or when I see little boys on the streets running after a dog with a wooden stick twice their size, ready to beat the poor being.
I call out to the youth of this nation, to have the shed some justice and humanity towards these animals who need our help- who need us to be their voice. I call out to the youth of this nation to have a heart.
DID YOU KNOW?
Stand up comedian Patton Oswalt was born January 27, 1969 (turning 45 today!) in Portsmouth, Virginia. He was named after General George S. Patton While a military brat, he later lived in Ohio and Tustin, California, before settling in Sterling, Virginia. He is a 1987 graduate of Broad Run High School in Ashburn, Virginia and later attended the College of William and Mary, where he majored in English and was initiated into the Alpha Theta Chapter of the Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity. Oswalt first began performing standup comedy in the late 1980s or early 1990s, by his own reckoning. After writing for MADtv and starring in his own 1996 comedy special for HBO, he went on to garner notable roles in films and television shows. His most prominent and long-running role was as Spence Olchin on The King of Queens. His first starring film role was as the voice of Remy, the lead character in the 2007 Pixar film Ratatouille. He has also appeared in smaller roles in such films as Magnolia and Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa. He lent his voice as in the video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas as a caller on the WTCR show "The Tight End Zone", and was the voice of a caller on "Chatterbox" on LCFR in the game Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories. He was also the voice of a reporter on "New World Order", a radio show on VCPR in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories.