Role of Mothers in the War in Mother of Martyrs: Critical Analysis

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Ekattorerdinguli is an impeccable creation of Jahanara Imamthat has been established as a valuable document in the history of Bengal. It is mainly an autobiography of her life where she wrote her experiences during the time of liberation war of 1971. The book contains the spread of horror images across the country as well as the role of the mothers in the war and also the contribution ofguerrillas in a very sensitive way that conveys the war into the heart of the readers.

About the writer:

Jahanara Imam is also known to us as the ‘Mother of Martyrs’. She is an example of the rare struggle of how the mother of Shaheed Rumi can become the mother of millions of martyrs who lost their lives in the libaration war.From her book we got to know that throughout the war, she and her family had been helping the freedom fighters in every possible way. She would secretly drive herself and deliver weapons and supplies to specific places. She did everything she could to get acquaintances safely to their destination, provide shelter and food. When her eldest son Rumi, sought the permission to enlist in the guerrilla forces, she accepted his infallible argument and allowed Rumi to join the war. This shows how truthful and rational she was and also her love for the motherland.But Rumi never returned to his mother’s lap. In Rumi’s mourning, her husband Sharif Imam died of a heart attack just two days before independence.She got independence but had to sacrifice her son and husband for it. Even after loosing them, she still remained strong and never stopped fighting for the country. Sheportrays an image of those persons who had lost their loved one in the war. She may lost her son but became an is an example of the rare struggle of how the mother of Shaheed Rumi can become the mother of millions of people.

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Timeline of the book:

In the book JahanaraImam narrates the month of March-December and gives a description of 168 days.The anger of the Bengalis, the movement and the support of patriotic people of all walks of life, the love and role of the mother, the brave campaigns of the guerrillas, help of middle class people, the brutal torture of the Pakistani army and the image of devastating Dhaka city are mainly described here.

In the light of above descriptions from March 1 to December 16, the incidents that take place each month are as follows:

  • March: Oppression to the common Bengalis and their anxietyand secret conspiracy of Pakistani aggressors to protest the adjournment of the session.
  • April: Horrible image of devastating Dhaka city.
  • May: Formation of guerrilla forces and light heading of freedom fighters along with some pictures of Dhaka.
  • June: The gradual increase of guerrilla activity, foreign aid, and attempts to normalize the destruction by the Pakistan government.
  • July: The start of the defensive activities of the freedom fighters and guerrillas
  • August: Successful guerrilla operation, arrest of many guerrillas and help of middle class and upper middle class.
  • September: Inhuman torture to the guerrillas.
  • October: The story of the guerrillas gaining strength again.
  • November: The fastest advancement of the war.
  • December: Bangladesh’s independence.

Book Analysis:

This book can be explained by the followings –

(1) The participation of the people of all walks of life:

We can see the support of patriotic people from different spherefrom theadjournment of the National Assembly on 1stMarch. The people of Bengal became angry and indignant and various political leaders, starting from students and farmers, took up various programs. All of the Bengalis were very active in the war.

(2) Image of besieged Dhaka city:

The author described the condition of Dhaka for several months. The issues that come to mind when discussing the image of the besieged Dhaka city are: the atrocities of the aggressors, the incessant curfew, the atrocities of the Biharis, the rape, the panic of the common people.

(3) The story of the guerrillas:

Jahanara Imam has dedicated this book to all the martyrs and living guerrillas of the liberation war.From her description, some of theguerrillas are Rumi, Shahadat, Alam, Chullu, Azam, Badi, Jewel, Chinnu, Swapan, Kazi, Azad, Selim, Harris, Muktar, Zia, Anu, Wahid, Chinku, Dr. Akhtar Ahmed, Dr.Nazim, Dr.Jafurullah, Khaled Musharraf (2nd Sector Commander), Lt. Many, including Commander ATM Haider.They are all 9doctors.

(4) The role of mother:

The sacrifice, patience and love of Jahanara Imam during the war as a mother is unbelievable, which can be observed throughout these ten months of March-December by the book. As a mother her role was incredible, she did the best that she could. She was not sad that Rumi has become a guerrilla, but nothing was worse than not being able to see him at a glance. Millions of Rumi were martyred in the liberation war and she became the mother of this all those Rumis.


‘Ekattor er Dinguli’ of Jahanara Imam will forever win the hearts of human beings.The wife of a struggling patriot, a mother of a courageousguerrilla, adetermined Bengali woman has done this valuable work for all of us. She has matched her secret feelings of sorrow like a rose to us. It is not just a memoirdiary of her, it is a book which is a document of the liberation war of Bangladesh, a highly respected literary work of Bangla literature.


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