A launching ceremony of a Bangla book on the Rohingya titled “Rohingya Refugee-Life: The Uncertain Future and the Liability of Civilization” was held virtually on 21 September 2021. It was jointly organized by the Center for Peace Studies (CPS) of South Asian Institute of Policy and Governance (SIPG), North South University (NSU) and Prothoma Prokashon. Mr. Matiur Rahman, Editor of Prothom Alo, joined as a Special Guest while Professor Atiqul Islam, Vice-Chancellor of NSU chaired the session.
CPS also celebrated World Peace Day 2021 through in person activities maintaining physical distance. These are; releasing balloons and pigeons, organizing a peace rally and a week-long Exhibition of Rohingya Artifacts. Peace and Development Advisor of UN Bangladesh, VC and Pro-VC of NSU joined in the peace rally at NSU campus. And the week-long Exhibition was organized by CPS and International Organization for Migration (IOM) from 19-25 September 2021. The Dutch Ambassador, British High Commissioner, Australian High Commissioner, UN Resident Coordinator, IOM Head, Vice-Chancellor of NSU, representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, development partners, and media were present at the inauguration program.
Discussants in the book launching opined that the recommendations of the various chapters of this book would play a key role in policy formulation and implementation of action plans to address the Rohingya crisis. Two NSU faculties Dr. Ishrat Zakia Sultana and Dr. Bulbul Siddiqui edited the book. They briefly discussed the contents of all eight chapters of the book.
Ambassador Shahidul Haque, Professorial Fellow, SIPG, NSU & Former Foreign Secretary, GoB said that the book mentioned the Rohingya as victims. But they are not only victims but also survivors. He raised concern as the Rohingya Crisis is being pushed to the margin on global politics because of other crises.
Motiur Rahman, Editor of Prothom Alo said that this book is very timely as the Rohingya crisis is still looming and the solution is at a stake. He also said that Prothoma Prokashon is very happy to publish this book and he added that Prothom Alo will continue to work with NSU for more research and publications. Professor C R Abrar, Immigration and Refugee Specialist said that independent research on the Rohingya issue is needed to understand the feelings and adversities faced by the Rohingya and to advise the policymakers and relevant stakeholders.
Raheed Ejaz, Diplomatic Correspondent at Daily Prothom Alo stated that the Rohingya crisis has become much more complex due to changing political dynamics in Myanmar, continuous geopolitical shifts, and reduced interest of the international community. He called for a holistic approach and political solution to facilitate a safe Rohingya repatriation.
Professor Atiqul Islam, Vice-Chancellor of NSU stated that these kinds of initiatives are very important to stay alive intellectually. He appreciated this initiative of publishing a Bangla book on the Rohingya issue and emphasized on further collaboration between Prothom Alo and NSU.
The program started with a poem recitation by a young Rohingya refugee. Arun Bosu, Coordinator of Prothoma Prokashon delivered the concluding remarks and hoped that the Prothoma Prokashon has been successful in conveying the true picture of Rohingya people’s lives to the readers. Academics, researchers, diplomats, journalists, and students were present among the participants. The event came to an end with a performance of a Rohingya traditional song by the Rohingya musicians.