Masharfe: hero forever

Mashrafe Bin Mortaza the charismatic cricket Icon of Bangladesh is the contest in the ensuing national election as a candidate of Bangladesh Awami League led grand Alliance. [Read also:“কেন আমি ভালো মানুষ?” প্রশ্ন মাশরাফির]

Happy birthday, captain!

Mashrafe is serving Bangladesh cricket over a decade with total commitment and dedication. Under his charismatic and dynamic leadership Bangladesh has become a force to reckon with in limited over version of the game.

Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) policy makers do not consider him for test for his bruised, battered legs from several surgeries in his legs. He also announced retirement from T20 international during the tour to Sri Lanka. He now only plays and leads the team in One Day International (ODI).

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He is the highest wicket taker of Bangladesh in ODI. Apart from a great cricketer, inspirational leader, he is also acclaimed as great human being. His cricket career is at its fag end. Many think he is may retire after the ensuing World Cup in England in mid 2019.

His decision for joining politics and more specifically ruling party has created some confusion among a section of Bangladeshis. In social media, some controversies have been deliberately created by persons of negative perceptions.

Mashrafe is an adult citizen of Bangladesh. He is not a government servant and he is not working in any statutory body as its employee. There is no provision in Bangladesh constitution that prevents a national cricketer contesting in the national election. It is constitutional right of an adult Bangladeshi contesting for national election for any party or as independent candidate. Being involved in social activities and committed to the ideals of the liberation war Mashrafe has taken the right decision for joining politics.

Seniors star in series opener win
Mashrafe’s 4/37 led Bangladesh to victory. ©Getty Images

He has already explained why he has joined politics and decided to participate in the election. He said he can see the end of his career now. He also said through out his career he has put in everything into his cricket for serving the nation.

He also said as cricketer he has entertained people and under his leadership his team has brightened the image of the country in the sporting community of the world. But inside him is always a desire to serve the poor, distressed people of the country. He has dreams for developing his Narail district. With that intention he created Narail Express and has been trying his best to assist people and social organizations in his area in various welfare activities.

Mashrafe’s decision for contesting the election for the ruling party however could not please all the Bangladeshis. It is very natural as everyone is not follower of the political party that Mashrafe has opted to represent. But why persons should abuse him in social media? How can people forget his great contribution for Bangladesh? A person who can hardly walk comfortably runs in and leads the attack of Bangladesh against formidable oppositions with his bruised and strapped legs. How wonderfully he has gelled the team together. He inspires each and every member of the team squeezing out the best in everyone. People must not evaluate his peerless contribution so easily?

Mashrafe joined practice on Tuesday
Mashrafe joined practice on Tuesday

Another school of thought suggest Mashrafe should have entered politics after retirement though few cricket stars joined active politics earlier as an active player. Mashrafe is not Playboy Cricketer like Imran Khan. Only fools would compare him with Imran Khan and his way of doing politics.

Mashrafe is not going to play till 2024 when the next election will be due.  Bangladeshis are so strange that people would forget his contribution once he retires. How many people remember Aminul Islam Bulbul or Omar Khaled Rumi or Jahangir Shah Badsha? Considering the circumstances and situation Mashrafe in my opinion has taken the right decision for joining politics now.

We all know he started doing social activities for sometime now. He is doing social works in Narail and has dreams for turning it to a model district. Mashrafe is a honest professional and very committed. Bangladesh needs honest persons like Mashrafe coming into politics.

Now come to situation why Mashrafe opted to appear on behalf of Awami League? Mashrafe has time and again expressed his commitment for the ideals of the liberation war. He has deep respect for the liberation war heroes. Which other party in Bangladesh is more committed to the ideals of the liberation war?

His own words echo in my mind. “We cricketers are not heroes. We play and entertain for a while. The real heroes are liberation war heroes. They committed their all for bring us a flag, a national identity “. Such a person joining politics would only enrich politics.

Who other than Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has done more for the cause of establishing the ideals of the liberation war? Judging all these it is my considered opinion that Mashrafe has taken the right decision and timely decision.

As far as his attention and commitment for cricket Mashrafe would play for Bangladesh even if he has to come out from ICU and run one legged. I am sure election campaigning or responsibility as elected MP would not be a disincentive for him in representing and leading Bangladesh team with the same intensity.

WISH MASHRAFE ALL THE BEST In Cricket and after in national politics. A HERO IS ALWAYS A HERO . MASHRAFE IS A HERO.

– Saleque Sufi


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