June 20, 2021


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Showing the living centenarian ‘dead’

He is now ‘dead’ in the government register due to misinformation given to data collectors while updating the voter list. At the age of 107, hoping to get his old age allowance back, the old man has been knocking on doors of government offices for almost a year to prove himself alive. Those who will certify him as ‘alive’ also know that he is ‘dead’ even if he survives because of their own mistakes. But due to bureaucratic complications, ‘saving’ him has become time consuming. The survey workers have made a mistake, and now the person who has been the victim of the mistake is being told that they will take action if they apply to correct the mistake in the ‘proper process’.

Lokman Hossain’s National Identity Card No. 81737335526. One of his two sons has died. He lives in the family of his dead son’s wife. He was getting an allowance of 500 rupees per month. Suddenly, in September 2020, his allowance stopped. He contacted various government departments including the Upazila Election Office but his allowance card was not activated. After about a year, the Upazila Election Officer said, “If the victim applies, I will take action soon.”

If mistakes can happen instantly, why is correction so time consuming? And what action has been taken against the data collector for such mistakes is also a big question. Not only Lokman, many people in the country are being deprived in this way by forgetting this kind of information update. So there is no chance to call this mistake wrong anymore. This is a direct crime.

While the slogan ‘Digital Bangladesh’ is being brought forward by the government, these incidents are tarnishing the success of the government. It is necessary to rectify the ‘mistake’ by taking strict action against those whose ‘mistake’ is making ‘living’ a ‘non-existent’ and throwing helpless people between life and death, and by returning the allowances due to the victims.