This post is mainly dedicated for these people:
1. People who believe that we are a generation of lazy, irresponsible, spoiled, selfish, bratty kids who only stay on their phones all day. Desi aunties and uncles, I'm talking to you.
2. Every single adult on G@G who bashed me and other minors on this website for our age, and invalidating our opinions for our age. (Let me put a bit of commonsense in your head: This website is for people of age 13 and above, and a 13 year old has as much right to post as a 23 or 33 year old in here so the only thing invalid here is your arrogance if you bash minors.)
3. And overall people who underestimate our capabilities or level of maturity for our age. Period.
What are you? 12? Yeah on a scale from 1 to 10.
I always wanted to post something about ageism on G@G, however with all the things happening in our country starting from our own city, and me typing this WHILE watching the live news and seeing Facebook posts, I will share something that didn't get any international media coverage yet (but it should and it hopefully will). Cause this is the second biggest riot in our history after the 1971 Liberation War, and it is done by... kids! Kids from grade 9 to 12! Woooow.
A little unfortunate fact before we start: Bangladesh has a lot of corruption and the transportation system SUCKS. Old unfit vehicles, drivers without license or illegally collected license, underage drivers, these things are very common. No one follows traffic rules, road accidents are very common. It's a sad truth about our nation that I just hate. We all want safer roads.
How it all started
It started in Dhaka. On July 30, a group of high school students (students of a public school) were waiting for a bus in the bus stop on the road that is called the Airport Road. That's when two buses were coming towards them while they were competing with one another to be faster and ahead of one another. Buses tend to avoid picking up students or pick up less students because students have to pay only half of the total money for their trip. Anyway, while the two buses were recklessly driving and only focusing on going faster, one bus attempted to overtake the other... and... it ran over the students. Even though media says two or three students died on spot, it's actually SEVEN students that died on spot. Several others were injured and taken to the hospital and a few more students died. I am not sure how many died in total but what happened was still very tragic.
It's not accident, it's murder.
Other high school students immediately blocked the Airport Road and started rioting. By the next day, almost all major roads in Dhaka were blocked and as of today, August 2, the protest is still going on and it's happening in cities all over Bangladesh. Students from more institutions, students from other cities are all gradually joining this protest including some of my own peers, and I like it.
What was the reaction of the government?
Shipping Minister Shajahan Khan LAUGHED when he heard that three students died. And he said, "It's only three students so what's the big deal? It's not as bad as an accident in India which killed 33 people on spot!" Man I can't explain how much disgusted we all are, you must know how wrong he is. The memes about him are getting viral. Anyway, we aren't happy and we want him to apologize to the students.
And you wanna know the secret behind that bright smile? It's not Colgate Optic White, it's the fact the owner of the bus is actually the shipping minister's relative. I think that was more than enough to explain the government's attitude towards this riot. Fucking disgusting.
How are the students rioting?
They are basically blocking every vehicle and asking the driver for license and other updated papers. And they are actually doing it in a very disciplined manner.
> They caught several drivers without license, which even includes policemen. Yep, it's not cops catching people without license it's HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS catching the cops without license, oh the irony. They even shared a video of a cop trying to bribe the students when he was caught. They are even checking Army vehicles, damn their courage.
> They even caught a politician in a jeep for driving on the wrong lane and they made that jeep turn to the right lane (which no one ever dared to do before. Politicians take whatever lane they want and people can say nothing).
> They are taking away keys of cars without license (or with expired license) or updated papers, but letting the drivers with license go (and they are even providing chocolates/candies to drivers who are carrying a proper license! Below is a Facebook status.)
Never got a chocolate for showing my driving license before. This is one is for Bangladesh ❤️ Hats off to all the students.
> They are doing a much better job than traffic police when maintaining the roads, and I even saw a video of an 8th grade girl maintaining a big busy road alone! And no one can get away by breaking traffic rules, even people with wealth and power are powerless today.
> They even caught a car carrying TV CHANNEL REPORTERS, where the driver had no license. They shared the video and they asked the passengers directly "You came here to give us media coverage but you guys are ones breaking the law?"
> They are letting ambulances and people on emergency go safely. They are even giving protection to people with special needs or medical emergency so that nobody can harm them on their way.
I could go on and on about what an amazing job they are doing. They proved that no matter the road condition, it is possible to maintain discipline and order in every road, even when the weather is terrible and it's raining because rain is a big traffic disaster.
The older generations who considered us as 'spoiled' are beyond impressed seeing that such young people can be way more disciplined and peaceful than the corrupted government officials, politicians and policemen. Cause we ain't greedy for money.
The 9-point Demand
The riot is actually for the 9-point demand and it won't stop until the demand is fulfilled.
But the students are facing their own set of problems
What makes this riot different from others is that, because the ones doing the riot are all under 20 and vastly under 18, they are literally kids and the aren't a part of any political party or group. As a result, the government is not being able to call them opposer, terrorists, traitors or put any other political tag or label like they did when college students, office workers, basically adults have rioted previously. They have no leader, so they can't arrest one person to shut the entire mob down. The only source of motivation for these children are their parents and not some kind of social media celebrity. So the government can't put any blame on anyone.
However, the government declared that all schools in the country shall remain closed. And... wow. That was a smart idea but the students quickly understood their wicked plan to put a bad reputation on them.
When students riot normally they are wearing their school uniform during their protest and all, but when school is closed they would go out in their normal clothes, right? So when they will be without their uniform and ID card, you won't be able to tell if they are school kids. In that moment if some outsiders from different political and terrorist groups join them and spread violence by breaking cars and harassing women, the government will find a way to put blame on the STUDENTS and spread hate against them and harass them and call them criminals. To further discourage students from wearing their uniform, many government schools have even threatened to expel their students if they are found rioting.
Why would they expel us? Why shall we not protest with uniform and ID card on? Are we committing any crime?
Even then it did not stop the students. In fact, any student without uniform and/or ID card is not being allowed to join the protest. This is literally becoming a "NO ADULTS ALLOWED" situation because even if any adult joins them with good intention, the terrorists would get the chance to join them and they don't want that. Kids have already done more than what we could ever imagine, and they are capable of doing it without any adult's interference. They watch out for outsiders to see if anyone breaks the discipline and becomes violent.
Actually, they did catch someone like that. A guy was among the students and he was breaking cars and being violent and all. Students caught him asking why he is ruining their peaceful riot, and they took him to the police. That's where the guy admitted that he is a member of Students League (a political group).
They are also facing violence. This also happened many times by now that when students tried to stop a bus or truck to check their license, the vehicle ran over them instead. I saw a few videos like that and they freaked me out. Some policemen beat some young students to the point that they were severely injured. Are elders so afraid of us? Elders on the internet invalidating out opinions by only our age cause they got no other way to defend their pathetic ass. Police BEATING kids their sons' age because they can't do anything better than that. As an honest 17-year-old, the old generation disappoints me.
You're here to beat me? Go ahead! I'm used to being beaten by the teachers in school anyway!
Even through teachers beating students in school is outlawed, it still happens in many schools. And the victims are usually those who tend to fail in exams. Back-benchers are literally changing the country.
Some are even spreading false things against students to make them seem more violent. :(
BY THE WAY: I am watching news now. Prime Minister invited the families of two victims that died from that bus accident AFTER FIVE DAYS?! What about other victims wtf.
Cubster, are YOU not joining the protest?
I really want to. I am a high school kid as well! Many of my peers are joining the protest and I want to join them too, but I can't for some reasons. I am trying to spread this among my friends outside of our country. Took me three hours to finish this myTake. That's all from me now, thanks for reading. This riot needs international media coverage. #WeWantJustice #RoadSafety
You can get more updated news articles from Dhaka Tribune and The Daily Star. They are both English newspapers. Facebook has more information that the media will never share.