It seems that the case of mistaken identity has become endemic with us. We have heard of people suffering in jail because of it, we have heard of people released from it because of it and now we have a genuine freedom fighter being deprived of his allowances because of it. Some of the so-called "mistaken" identity, we believe, may not be "mistaken" but deliberate. Protap Chandra Roy, a freedom fighter from Kazirchawra village in Harati union of Lalmonirhat Sadar upazila, has never received any allowance or housing from the government. And that too after he was duly scrutinised and certified in 2019 as a genuine participant in our Liberation War. In his place, another person by the name of Protap Chandra from Gangachara upazila of Rangpur has been collecting the benefits, illegally of course.
One of the good steps that the current AL government has taken is to provide increased allowance to the freedom fighters. Unfortunately, we have never received a "final" list of them yet. With every new government in power, efforts were renewed to "finalise" the freedom fighters' list, only to be told by a new government that the old list was not accurate. And every time there was accretion in their numbers. We hope to get a final list of freedom fighters in June this year. However, what we have at hand now is a provisional list. But be that as it may, we hope that the new list would be able to identify the fake persons drawing allowances illegally. And we believe that in this regard too, the government should deal with a heavy-hand with those who have faked documents to establish themselves as freedom fighters. In this regard, we recall that quite a few very senior members of the administration had faked documents just so that they could claim freedom fighters' allowance. We believe that these people should be called to account and pay for their unethical and illegal act. As for Protap Chandra Roy, the administration should ensure that he gets his due immediately, including his past dues.