Interpretation of accidents

Dhaka,  Tue,  26 September 2017
Published : 19 Aug 2017, 21:28:04
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OPINION

Interpretation of accidents

No matter how people interpret life-taking or serious accidents, in Bangladesh these happenings have long become part of life. Lately, the country appears to be one of the most prone in the world to deadly accidents, writes Shihab Sarkar
The recent tragic death of a teenage student on being crushed under a book-loaded shelf at his Chittagong school is saddening. Deaths like this make us speechless and bewildered. People, especially the sensitive ones, who have heard the news may find themselves in a quandary over the grim turn of fate of the otherwise sprightly lad. The state of his bereaved parents is understandable. To them the tragedy was like a bolt from the blue. Many will interpret the incident as a dictate of nature. Those loving to go philosophical may pass it off by saying this is how life goes on. After accidental deaths, fatalists point to the working of destiny which commands every human being. Death, be it a result of occurrences beyond human control or of arriving at a ripe age, cannot be averted. Death is as true as life. Yet many with a mundane and practical bent of mind would like to view an untimely death as a result of certain happenings caused by the person concerned or by external factors.

When it comes to fatal accidents, the reasonable group might love to probe the realities around the deaths. The realities may include some specific acts of the persons who have fallen victim to mishaps or those around them. No matter how people interpret life-taking or serious accidents, in Bangladesh these happenings have long become part of life. Lately, the country appears to be one of the most prone in the world to deadly accidents. Interpretations vary from the idealistic to the practical. Some may feel resigned; many would feel inclined to jump on their feet to save people from avoidable deaths. But the stark truth is the frequency of accidental deaths is sharply on the rise in the country. They range from mishaps while on home-bound travels and pleasure trips, during commuting in a busy city, or on being caught in the middle of an armed clash between two feuding gangs. In the capital Dhaka deaths of reckless people while jaywalking are common scenario. There are dozens of other types of accidents which are least expected and catch the victims unawares. A pedestrian going past an under-construction building doesn't normally see himself in the worst of his bad dreams being hit by a stray brick falling from above. Deaths from falling objects like bricks, pieces of rod, sledge hammers, etc., were once quite frequent in Dhaka. Thanks to the preventive measures made mandatory for the building owners or contractors, frequency of these accidents saw a sharp decline in the big cities. But deaths due to being hit by falling objects continue to occur in smaller towns and suburbs.

Pessimists would like to single out urban areas as hostile places where great hazards lurk in their every nook and cranny. Nobody knows for sure as to from which place the terrible face of danger will pop up. These sudden hazards catch people off guard. On failing to cope with the situation, many become so perplexed that it leads to malfunction of their reflex. As a result, people in given situations fall victim to grievous injuries, with many facing sudden deaths. Citizens born and brought up in the capital are not normally prepared to walk into a mugging in the late evening, on a road where they whiled away leisurely hours during youth. But incidents like this do happen in the highly unpredictable city nowadays. The pragmatic and mundane lot may pass off these as freak happenings. They would blame the victim for not being sufficiently careful. On the other hand, idealistically disposed people will possibly bring up fate which none can escape.

 Drowning, deaths from lighting or landslides --- as well as injuries, cannot be banished from life. Prudence warrants responsible behaviour. Yet some accidents keep us befuddled.

shihabskr@ymail.com



 
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