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Road to Boga Lake

The inception:

It was late noon of mid October. I was working in my office room. Wahid vai, Suhan vai and others were also in the room. I was tiered of long work. Suddenly I stopped what I was doing and shouted “damn it! I don’t like the works anymore. Need to have a break”. There are times when I get bored with my routine life and I become desperate to go out of the town. This was something like that. I  knew there is a 3 day holiday coming up in next week. I didn’t want to waste this vacation sitting idle in my home. I asked Wahid “what’s your plan for upcoming holidays?” in return Wahid asked ‘What’s your plan?” I replied ” I want to get out of town. Let’s go somewhere.”

Few day back, Wahid shared a Facebook post regarding how to go to Bogalake and Tindu areas from Bandarban district. I recalled that post and replied to wahid vai ” lets go to Bandadban!”. I have visited bandarban once but Wahid have visited several times except boga lake. He has become an expert on Bandarban. For next 10 to 15 minutes Wahid described how beautiful Boga lake is and how wonderful it will be to stay night by the side of the Lake. His description raised my interest even higher.

Wahid, Manik and I were planning to go to Bhutan couple of times but each time we had to think of something else due to schedule conflicts. This time it was no exception. So to get somewhat feeling of mountains and clouds, we have chosen Bandarban as a proxy.

We have spent next two days for making an cost estimation, journey schedule, obtaining confirmation from Manik, Suhan vai, Talha & Roki. It was hard to get a bus ticket. Suhan van and Manik was not sure whether we will be able to pull it off. But at the end with Wahid vai and my endless effort, we managed bus ticket to Chittagong just before the night of journey. It was fastest tour plan and arrangement with my colleagues. Even though the it was raining heavily for last couple of days, it didn’t bother anyone.

Beginning of Journey:

Our initial plan was to start at evening and reach Chittagong by early morning. From Chittagong we will go to Bandarban and without any journey break we will reach to Roma Bazar by noon. After having lunch at roma bazar and shopping for BBQ, we will take a jeep and reach to boga lage by late afternoon. We will enjoy the evening by the side of boga lake and have BBQ. We will enjoy the moonlight night from the cottage and stay there for the night. Next day morning, we will go to Keokaradong mountain and return to Boga lake at the evening. We will head back to Roma bazar next morning and by noon we will start for Bandarban. We will reach Bandarban by evening and start for Dhaka if any bus is available. If there is no bus is available, we will stay the night on Bandarban and start to Dhaka next day. If the bus is scheduled for the evening, we will take go to Nilgiri and see around the Bandarban district.

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Road to Boga Lake

But things do not always go with your plan. We purchased our bus ticket from busbd.com which allows to buy any long distance bus ticket. Our transport provider was AK Travels. Busbd.com charged us around 650 per person. Our bus was scheduled to start at 11:30 PM from Gabtoli bus stand. But at the day of journey, someone from AK Travel called me around 4:30 pm saying that they will not be taking us to our destination. When I asked the reason they replied that fare was not much enough during this busy time. After that he hanged up the phone. I was shocked and informed Wahid vai. We both decided to call the help line of busbd.com. After couple of call, they picked up the phone. I informed them about the situation and they said they will have a look.

After 10/15 minutes they called me back informing that AK Travel demands around BDT 1000/ per person and if we want to go we have to pay additional 350 taka per person. I instantly refused as their demand was too much higher. I told the customer care from busbd to reconsider this or else we will publicly disclose the issue. After conversation with them, I talked with several transport services and found out that there was no vacant sit for the day.

After hearing the issue with bus, Manik voted for cancel the tour while Wahid was in hesitation. Both of them was worried about the outcome of the tour as the beginning was not smooth. Meanwhile, Roki, Talha and Suhan vai laid back to their sits and informed us that they are with us in whatever decision we take. I was pissed of with the situation but I was determined to go for the tour. I wasn’t ready to quit at the very last moment. But finally everyone agreed to go for the tour.

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Road to Boga Lake

At the evening, people from busbd.com called me and informed me that AK travel has agreed to settle on BDT 800. We can ride on the bus if we agree to pay additional BDT 150. Or else we have to manage our own ride. In that case busbd will refund our money within a week. I didn’t have any other option available so I agreed to pay additional money and confirmed our travel later in the night.

After settling the issue with AK travel and busbd, our journey has been confirmed. We were suppoed to get on the bus on 11:30pm. So I instructed everyone to be at the Gabtoli bus stand by 11:00pm. I was sure that rest of the tour will go smoothly according to our plan. But I didn’t know that luck was not in our favor with this tour and lots of troubles were waiting for us.

(to be continued in Episode 2)

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Crime is widespread now a days. Criminals always finds a new way to commit crime and we become the victim of their misdeed. Night before last night (on 25th June night) I also became a victim of crime.

I was returning home from a Iftar party organized by classmates and friends of North South University (NSU). It was already passed 10pm so I took a CNG. Road was almost empty and the CNG was going at a very good speed. I felt relaxed and I was thinking that I will not take more than half an hour to reach Moahmmadpur from Banani. I started to browse Facebook and scrolling down the posts and pictures shared by my friends. After few moments I looked out and saw that I was crossing Bijoy Shmarani. My CNG slowed down a bit at the end of the Bijoy Smarani and started toward the the road infrant of Chandrima/zia udda. As the CNG started to run again, I returned to Facebook browsing. After few moments later, suddenly I noticed the my cellphone was not in my hand and it is going upward. For a brief moment, I couldn’t understand what was happening. Then I understood that someone has snatched my cell phone. I shouted to the CNG driver to stop the CNG. CNG driver didn’t understand at first but eventually he stopped the CNG. By that time snatcher ran away. A biker saw the whole indecent and showed the direction where the snatcher ran away. I quickly followed the direction and but couldn’t find anyone. Road was empty and there were some people walking at the opposite side of the road. I quickly run toward the opposite side of the road. I tried calling my numbers from my other phone hope that it would rang and I would be able to catch the snatcher if he was around. But unfortunately the snatcher complete vanished with my cellphone and I could not locate the snatcher as he already switched off my cellphone.

I returned to my CNG and inspected how this happened. I saw that the snatcher has cut a hole in the CNG hood with a blade. He got into at the back of CNG while CNG slowed down at the signal point. He made the whole as soon as CNG started to move. Within a second he took snatched my cellphone and ran away. I was so shocked. I didn’t even think that it was possible. After waiting few more minutes I started for home once again. I realized that there was nothing I could do. I felt vulnerable and helpless but returned to home. I was upset as I lost lots of personal information and family pictures along with the phone. I could not sleep the night. On the following morning, I went to the police station and made a general diary for the loss of cellphone. They told me that they will try to find the phone but it might not be possible. Even if the phone is recovered, it will not be before four to five months.

This was the second time I lost my cellphone in a public transport. I lost my cellphone first time almost one and half year earlier when I was trying to get into a crowded public bus. People was  pushing each other and someone took the opportunity to  pick my phone from my pocked. Moments after pick pocket, I realized that I lost the phone. I tried to look around and find the person stole my phone. But it was really hard for me to locate my phone over the tough crowd. I was helpless and didn’t understand what to do. I was vulnerable. Later I came to know that many people lost their cellphone while trying to get into a crowded bus. Pickpockets steal the phone and pass it to another. From that day, I try to avoid crowded public transport.

I said at the start of the blog that criminals always find new ways to commit crime. They finds  innovative ways to exploit our weakest and careless moments leaving us vulnerable.  In order to avoid becoming victim of the crime, we must be careful on the road and public transportation. We should identify our weakest points while we are at the road and try to overcome the weakness. We should also take lessons from other incidents so that we can make ourselves aware about the ways crimes are committed. It is said that prevention is better than cure. As part of preventing crimes, we should be aware before we fall victim of crimes. I request you all to stay safe and aware of surroundings while you are on road.

I always wanted friends with whom I will be able to share everything. I will become a part of their family and they will become my family members. We always will look after another. Till now I thought I found that kind of friendship. Not actually I didn’t. I found a friendship where no one sees others back. No one wants to know what others are going through. Same goes for me. We are so much busy with our life that we don’t have time for others. We don’t have time for our social obligations. we don’t have time by the side of others.

My sentences might seem hard but that’s the reality now. On August 24, one of my friend’s sister died. She was sick for a very long time. We didn’t give her a visit. My friend left Bangladesh for almost 5 years. Most of us didn’t even communicate with his family after his departure. Well, at least I didn’t. Few years back, my friend asked for our help to arrange a fundraiser program for sister’s treatment. At that moment we all were busy and couldn’t help my friend or his family.  After my friend’s sister died, my friend wanted to return Bangladesh and attend her funeral. He asked financial help from everyone through a Facebook status. I wanted to help him so much. So I called all 5/6 friends who were in Bangladesh. But at the end it wasn’t possible for us to arrange the money to buy his air ticket. I was feeling guilty for not being any help to him.

Today my friend let me know her sister’s funeral. I wanted to attend this at least for the social obligation. I called almost everyone to attend the funeral. But everyone was busy. Finally only one of our friend attended the funeral. I, too, got busy with auditing at the last moment and couldn’t attend the funeral. I was helpless. I am in a such profession where personal matters are required to put aside. In this profession, there are some times where you can’t leave your work even if your close one is in deathbed. in short I couldn’t leave my work. I hope all others will attend the event.

I was shocked when I heard that only one attended the event.  Then I felt the greatest guilt. We are so busy that we can’t attend a funeral of our close one. I know we all have limitation from our sides. I know we are not wealthy. I know we are so busy with our work. But maybe just maybe, if we tried a bit we might arrange a plane ticket for our friend so that he could attend her sister’s funeral. May be if we tried hardly, we could attend the funeral. This is the guilt I have to bear my entire life. Under the current condition, it seems none of my friend will attend my funeral if I die now. Everyone will be busy with their life. It seems. we have failed to make a strong friendship. We have failed to become a member of others family. We have failed to fulfill our duty as a friend. I believe we are just acquaintances who call ourselves friends.

Sorry sister, I couldn’t attend your funeral. But pray to almighty to arrange the highest jannat (heaven) for you. Innalillahe Wainnalillahe Rajiun (for sure, we have come from you and we will return to you). May your soul rest in peace and your grave become a piece of heaven. Amin!

When I got admitted in North South University, BBA degree used to rule the job market. Almost all companies looked for the candidates with BBA degree. But Before I could complete my BBA, job market started to shift toward MBA degree. By the time I completed my graduation, job market totally moved to MBA holders. Now companies look for candidates with MBA holders. They want MBA holders even in the lower posts where graduation is not required.

In other countries MBA is treated as a professional degree like Chartered Accountant (CA), Chartered Management Accountants (CMA) or other degrees. In those countries, number of MBA holders are very few. But in Bangladesh MBA is not a professional degree anymore. It have become an academic course as there are plenty of people with MBA degree.  Because there are lots of MBA holder in the market, BBA holders are falling behind in the job market. Therefore almost all graduates thinks of getting a MBA degree.

Till yesterday, I used to think what new qualification companies might want in their job candidates as there are lots of MBA holders. Today morning I got my answer when I saw a circular. It’s for DBA from IBA. IBA is the first institution in Bangladesh to introduce DBA. DBA means Doctor of Business Administration. It is treated as Ph.D in business sector or business study. I know soon other top universities and then other universities will start offering DBA. And lots of people will run after DBA degree in order to differentiate in job market.

Then I started to think, how long people will study to get a good job? People in our country kept studying and getting new degrees with a dream to get a good job which will give them attractive salary and attractive position. But as this type people increase every day, options increases for the employers too. They want highly qualified candidates for low positions which might not need any qualification at all. As DBA have been introduced in Bangladesh, people will start running after this degree and soon companies will make it a requirement for entry-level jobs.

I was thinking how to avoid dependence on degrees to make a livelihood. The answer I came up with was to avoid the tendency of getting a job. There will always be some new degrees. And people will run after those degrees to differentiate in the job market and get a good job. But if we don’t have any tendency to run after job, we wouldn’t have to take the hassle to achieve those higher degrees. Instead of running after jobs, people should start small businesses. They should become a small entrepreneur. If people don’t want to lead posh lifestyle, small business might be enough to make livelihood and maintain an average lifestyle. The amount of time and money people spends for getting degrees, a person might had a successful business  if those are spent for small business. If people trend to start small business, this country will have lots of small entrepreneurs and who knows, they might become giant entrepreneurs someday.

It was my life long dream to be a professional accountant. Specially to be a Chartered Accountant (CA). Therefore, after my graduation, I joined in a CA firm named A. Qasem & Co. It is the first CA firm and one of the top ranked firm in Bangladesh. It’s also the only cooperative firm of PwC in Bangladesh.

After i joined in CA firm, many of the senior articled students and managers advised me to start studying from the very beginning  They advised me to buy the books and take preparation for the exam which was then due in one and half years. I started studying but I could not grab much of it. It was hard for me to understand the terms and procedures followed by the team. None of the senior team member tried to make me understand what I was doing and what was the reason of it. All the did was direct me to what to do and how to do. But I don’t blame them. They didn’t have time to make me understand all those things. When I started auditing, then I came to understand everything. Then when I read my manuals I could understand everything and I started to enjoy it. Soon I finished 5 out of 7 books.  Rest 2 books are kept for reading two months before the exam.

In the mean time, 12 months have passed. Exam time is almost here. Yesterday I saw the exam notice for May – June 2013 exam of ICAB. I started to become panic. All of a sudden I felt that I am not prepared for the exam and exam is due with in a month. I started to panic. I could not concentrate on the study. I was alone at home which was ideal time to study and finish off several chapters. But as I could not concentrate on my study, I could not study a single chapter.

Later I clam down a bit and started to analyze my preparation. I found that it’s not that bad. All I need is to revise the books couple of the times and practice all the maths. Also I have two months in my hand. In this time I have to attend the classes which is a plus point for me. If I attend the classes regularly, I will understand which topics I need to focus more. But there is a downside of attending the classes. It drains out the energy out of my body. I don’t have any stamina left when I return to home. It’s already dinner time when I reach home. After refreshing myself and having dinner, I hardly get chance to study, Moreover I have to attend office next day morning and so I have to go to bed within 12 am.

On the other hand, my ICMAB exam are due in next month. I will attend two subjects this time. I failed in both subjects in earlier exams. So this time I want to pass the both of them. I have to prepare for those exam too. From now on I have to preserve my stamina and reduce the unnecessary things I do. I need to do lots of library work and revise all 7 books by April. Then I will finalize my preparation in May. Hope this plan will work out for me. I plan to pass all the subjects in the first attempt. In Sha Allah! Please pray for me.

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