Random thoughts before the World Cup final
1. I can see why people might be upset about the waving of Pakistani flag in Mirpur stadium. 1971 is not ‘closed chapter’ by any means. Personally, I am not particularly distressed by it, but to borrow the word of a UV commenter, it is ‘unseemly’.
2. I find it a bit of a stretch when people draw strong political conclusions from this. How representative of anyone are a few dozen (hundred?) kids with little knowledge of history?
3. And if anyone is seriously worried about Bangladesh losing its identity — or whatever it is that people worry these Pakistani flags mean — here is something to cheer you up: judging by Facebook comments (from 3 independent accounts, covering a sample of over 500), net-savvy Deshis supported India over Pakistan 4-to-1. Fear not, Bangladesh is not about to become Pakistan.
4. That said, even many supporting India have comments to the effect that if India wins the World Cup, their TV channels will become unbearable. Hmmm…. may be it’s time to stop watching Indian channels and tune into something Deshi?
5. Two fellow UV bloggers were involved in a debate about how this flag-waving business is different from the Meherjaan saga. I think the difference is non-trivial. Those waving Pakistani flag are at best young men who are unaware of the history. Rubaiyat Hossain wanted to make a movie providing a counter-narrative of 1971. The flag-waving kids ought to be dismissed for their stupidity, or we can bemoan the failings of our education system. But Ms Hossain should be prepared to face robust intellectual criticism that any counter-narrative of 1971 is bound to cause.