|Name:||Nishat Tasnim Oyshee|
|Studio Master:||Ziaul Islam, Md. Masrur Mamun Hossain, Muhtadin Iqbal, Udday Shankur Datta|
|University:||University of Asia Pacific|
| From the submission |
It’s a poem of an old river which used to carry sediment to a fertile land. Once it carried thousands of lives and it was about to transfer them to a safer place and it failed to do so as it had to float their bodies and blood.
It’s a poem of that fertile land which is kept bleak. It could have been the feeding-source of patriotism for the after generation. It’s a poem of that wretched paddy field which still weaves with the wind, whispering a poem, a sad poem, of a mass killing of 8,000-10,000 lives. A poem which is kept myriad to the world for more than 4 decades. This untold tale should be told; it’s screaming should be screamed again; its tear should keep wetting hearts…
Genocide is unsolicited and unscrupulous to the whole world. It’s been happening worldwide due to political, social, economic, religious, cultural and so many ins and outs. In order to prevent genocide, we must realize it’s devastation.
Bangladesh had her own brutal birth in 1971, on a number of immeasurable sacrifices of genocide and torture. Since torture was getting excruciating on the minorities of Khulna region, thousands of these locals collected what belongings they could and went to a village called Chuknagar, from where they were about to go towards the Indian border by boat. Here they lost all of their belongings, cash, and jewelry, their families got tattered and a minimum number of 8000-10000 people were killed from a gathering of about 1 lac eluding people by a small group of Pakistani Army within 3-4 hours. Upon the departure of the unit, the locals disposed of the bodies by throwing them into the river and the nearby ponds. As the death toll raised to 4,200 they just lost count. The bodies kept floating with the silts and people couldn’t use the river water or eat fishes for the next 6 months.
According to numerous eyewitnesses and survivors, it’s the biggest genocide that happens in the liberation war of Bangladesh, 1971. Like many others, it is not even documented or acknowledged. It’s been 46 years since then, and that undeveloped paddy field, Bazar; losing it’s ‘Kheya-Ghat’, is still there with its broken temple. With the death of these witnesses, who can still tell the truth with their tear-stained eyes, the oral history is decaying day by day.
Plotting all these historic footprints on a master plan, three historically intensive zones are proposed with three strategic programs: A Documentation and Research Institute with a memorial on the paddy field, a factual gallery on the bank of that Bazar and a contemplation shelter which is accessed by a boat ride across the river Bhadra. A guided tour, both with signage and narration, is also proposed marking a historical point of reference for the future which will link the past with the present and enable people to realize that hatred is not the solution stopping genocidal acts, they have the individual responsibilities for the peace to humanities.
Description of the journey:
The journey starts from research institute and documentation center where you get a general overview on the genocides of the liberation war of Bangladesh,1971. Here is a research school that will collect, organizes and publish documents on this subject. A central library, movie tower, gallery, the archive may help one to obtain actual orientation about genocide and torture.
From information center, the visitor will get a distant view of Chuknagar memorial. From here the journey passes through the villages where the killing took place. Signage and integrated installation facilitate visitors after 5 to 10 minutes of walk. after reaching the river bank visitors will have some refreshment facilities such as washroom, authentic restaurant and a watch tower.
The bank of the river is reclaimed for a factual gallery which is sited beneath the silts. The Kali temple, a new banyan tree, a ghat and the light shafts give river to back the Bazar. From the factual gallery, it’s possible to see the bazaar along with the exhibits. The journey ends with a boat trip to the contemplation shelter.
For the resiliency of the development, a phenomenological approach of keeping architecture humble and down to the context is taken in terms of materials and construction, which also keeps the senses close to the actual facts.
CONTEXT contributing editor : Md Tarek Morad, Architect & Assistant Professor.
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