Sick, insecure and suffering, Lt. Gen (retd) Sarwardy appeals to the PM for help
Lt Gen Chowdhury Hasan Sarwardy (retd) has appealed to the prime minister to ensure safety of his life and proper medical treatment. He made this appeal in a recent letter, following his being declared persona non grata in the cantonment.
In recent times Sarwardy had created a stir in the political and military arena of Bangladesh, delivering a brash and unrestrained statement which particularly targeted the army chief in no uncertain terms, referring to the chief’s criminal brother and other controversial matters.
As a result of his tirade, the ISPR issued a rebuttal of his comments, giving reasons for declaring him persona non grata in the cantonment and denying him access to the Combined Military Hospital (DMH), the officers’ club, the CSD shops, etc.
And now Sarwardy and has taken the issue up with the prime minister.
In a letter written to the prime minister on 29 July 2020, the retired general said, “I am sure I have no need to introduce myself to you as you are the respected guardian of my professional career. Courage, strength of mind and a hatred for corruption are the guiding principles of my life.”
He then went to inform the prime minister that he was presently extremely unwell and was displaying symptoms of coronavirus.
He wrote, “I am extremely unwell and in fear of my life.” He claimed that since 14 July armed persons in civil clothes had been surrounding his house in Baridhara DOHS. “They are threatening by driver and guard and are attempting to enter my house. My wife learnt from the local police station and the DOHS council that they are not members of any law enforcement agency.”
He continued, “I have been extremely insecure and have been staying away in various places for 15 days. My health has seriously deteriorated over the past 7 days and I have developed coronavirus symptoms, respiratory problems and am in fear of my life. Under the circumstances I need to go to CMH for COVID-19 test and medical treatment.”
He said that he has been with the prime minister through difficult times and had always proven his loyalty and integrity. He said that after the Rana Plaza collapse, in which he played a vital role in supervising the rescue work, he had developed pneumonia and other health complications. CMH had all his medical records in this regard, he said.
In the letter he went on to inform the prime minister that after leaving the army, he would work for a private company, Walton, but the army headquarters pressurised the company into terminating its contract with him.
He said, “During my career and even after retirement, I never sought any favour from you [the prime minister], but in these hard times I am entitled to proper healthcare, given my long 40 years of service in the army. As a citizen, too, I have the right to a job, to safely live at my home, as well as medical treatment.”
“You are the honourable prime minister, defence minister of this country. Humanity is a sacred part of your character. I humbly place this appeal to you so I may live these last years of my life in the safety of my home and avail proper medical treatment.”