Abu Osman Chowdhury

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Abu Osman Chowdhury
Native name
আবু ওসমান চৌধুরী
Born(1936-01-01)1 January 1936
Chandpur, Bengal Presidency, British India
Died5 September 2020(2020-09-05) (aged 84)
Dhaka, Bangladesh
Buried
Service/branch
Years of service
  • (1958–1971) Pakistan
  • (1971–1976) Bangladesh
RankLieutenant Colonel
Commands heldBDF Sector 8 Commander

Abu Osman Chowdhury (1 January 1936 – 5 September 2020) was a Bangladeshi war hero and freedom fighter. During the Bangladesh Liberation War, he served as the commander of Sector 8 of the Bangladesh Forces that covered the present-day Kushtia, Jashore, Khulna, Barishal, Faridpur and Patuakhali regions.[1]

Background[edit]

Chowdhury was bon on 1 January 1936 in Madnergaon village in present-day Faridganj Upazila of Chandpur District. He completed his bachelors from Comilla Victoria College.[1]

Career[edit]

Chowdhury joined the Pakistan Army in 1958. He was promoted to the Major rank in April 1968.[1]

Role in Bangladesh liberation war[edit]

In 1971, Chowdhury was posted in Chuadanga, under Kushtia District as a Major of the Pakistan army and the Commander of 4th Wing East Pakistan Rifles (EPR). He left for Kushtia with his family on 23 March 1971 to attend an official meeting. He was staying at Kushtia Circuit House on the night of 25–26 March when the news of Operation Searchlight reached him. Sensing imminent danger he left Kushtia on early morning of 26 March 1971 and headed to Chuadanga via Jhenaidah while local political workers have already revolted. Later Bengali soldiers raised the flag of Bangladesh at EPR 4th Wing Headquarters in Chuadanga.[2][3] Later the 4th wing of EPR, led by Major Chowdhury and reinforced with Police and Ansar personnel and local youth, attacked 27 Baluch of Pakistan Army stationed at Kushtia and eliminated almost 2 companies.[4]

In the first sector commander's conference in July, Chowdhury was appointed the commander of the western sector, which comprised Kushtia, Jessore, areas of Faridpur, including Doulatpur-Satkhira Road encompassed within Khulna.

It was past noon of 26 March when Chowdhury reached his Wing headquarters at Chuadanga. There, his NCOs briefed him of the overall situation including formal organisation of local resistance in the wake of the crackdown at Dhaka. In the meantime local Awami League leader Dr Ashab Ul Haq, who had earlier declared war against the occupational Pakistan armed forces the same morning at a public meeting, had contacted him over telephone and invited him to an emergency meeting with the public leaders and representatives of the local administration. At the meeting Chowdhury was asked to take charge of the armed resistance force that he accepted at once. After a long discussion the first ever war command of Bangladesh, named South Western Command, was formed on 26 March 1971 in Chuadanga. While Chowdhury was given the position of the Commander, Dr Ashab Ul Haq, MPA became the Chief Advisor and Barrister Abu Ahmed Afzalur Rashid alias Badal Rashid, MNA, and Advocate Yunus Ali, MPA, were made Deputy Chief Advisors. The whole of western region of the Padma was taken under the command comprising that of Kushtia, Faridpur, Jessore, Khulna districts. All the armed personnel from defence, EPR, Police, Ansar, Mujahid and armed student wing of the area were vested under the Command. The newly built District Council Dak Bungalow was made the Command Headquarters. The next day on 27 March at about noon the Pakistani flag, last flying one at the EPR Wing headquarters was ceremoniously lowered and the tri-colour Bangladesh flag was hoisted at the flag post by Chowdhury. Captain A R Azam Chowdhury, his deputy, was there who afterwards played valiant role under the Command. Chowdhury held the position till division of Bangladesh war commands into 11 Sectors by the Provisional Government on 11 July 1971. The South Western Command was then renamed Sector-8 with some revision of the command area and Chowdhury continued to hold the position of the Sector Commander till Major M Abul Manjur took over in September 1971.

Post war[edit]

On 7 November 1975, during the 1975 coup, Chowdhury's wife, Nazia Osman was killed in his Gulshan residence.[1] He retired from Bangladesh Army as a lieutenant colonel in 1976.[5] In 2014 he was awarded the Independence Day Award for his contribution to the Bangladesh Liberation war.[6] On 5 September 2020, he died at the Combined Military Hospital in Dhaka.[1][7] Though he initially tested positive for coronavirus disease 2019, a subsequent test did not detect the virus.[1][8] Abu Osman Chowdhury was given a state funeral and buried at Banani Army Graveyard.[9][10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f "Another war hero leaves". The Daily Star. 2020-09-06. Retrieved 2020-09-06.
  2. ^ Nasim, A.S.M (2002). Bangladesh fights for independence. Columbia Prokashani. p. 57.
  3. ^ Imamuz Zaman (2001). Bangladesh war of liberation. Columbia Prokashani. p. 13.
  4. ^ Brig Gen Shafaat Ahmad, ndc, psc (Retd) (16 December 2009). "Liberation war of Bangladesh". Victory Day Special Supplement. Dhaka: The Independent – via International Crimes Strategy Forum.
  5. ^ "Confer Bir Uttam award on Abu Osman Chowdhury". The Daily Star. 2012-12-14. Retrieved 2018-06-30.
  6. ^ March 25, Staff Correspondent; PM, 2014 at 4:31. "Prime minister distributes Independence Award". en.prothomalo.com. Retrieved 2020-09-08.
  7. ^ "Abu Osman Chowdhury, sector commander of Bangladesh Liberation War, dies at 84". bdnews24.com. Retrieved 2020-09-06.
  8. ^ "Sector Commander Abu Osman Chowdhury passes away". Dhaka Tribune. 5 September 2020. Retrieved 8 September 2020.
  9. ^ "Abu Osman Chowdhury dies". New Age. 5 September 2020. Retrieved 8 September 2020.
  10. ^ "Sector Commander Lt.Col(Rtd) Abu Osman Chowdhury passes away". Barta24. Retrieved 8 September 2020.