The row over the transfer of a physician following his derogatory post against Masrafe Bin Mortaza, cricket captain of Bangladesh as well as a lawmaker, on the Facebook is an indication of the hubris the Bangalees as a nation is heir to. On June 26, just two months after Mashrafe's visit to the Narail Sadar Hospital on April 24, the doctor, one of the top three child cancer specialists of the country, was transferred to the Rangamati Medical College Hospital from the Chattogram Medical College Hospital (CMCH). Notably, the physician is the founder and head of the Paediatric Hematology and Oncology Department at the CMCH and his service will be greatly missed by child patients suffering from cancer. Patients from not so well-to-do families of not only Chattogram but also of seven other districts under Chattogram division seek cancer treatment there.
Now how does such an expert physician get embroiled in a dispute with the captain of the Bangladesh cricket team? During Masrafe's visit, four doctors -as is a routine practice now on the part of physicians -were found absent from duty at the Narail Sadar Hospital. The report carried in a contemporary states that Mashrafe used abusive languages while talking over telephone to one of the four doctors. How filthy the languages were is not known. But enraged, the child cancer specialist at CMCH in his post called Mashrafe 'an unruly, illiterate thug'.
So far as the image of the Bangladesh cricket team captain is concerned, he should be the last person to deserve this kind of vituperation. He is known to eat humble pie, not used to showing off. So kind-hearted and friendly he is that he has not forgotten a childhood mate -a shoemaker. Every time he visits his village home, he makes it sure to meet this friend. Not many people, when they attain higher stations in life, can do this.
As a member of parliament, Masrafe has every right to see for himself how the hospital under his constituency runs. In countries where departments concerned fail to maintain discipline, such supervisions cannot be dispensed with, although lawmakers are supposed to do better things at parliament. The reason for the physician to attack Mashrafe is perhaps his partisan professionalism. That a member of his profession would be taken to task by someone not known for his academic achievement was unacceptable to him. So he came hard on the cricket captain and MP.
What he, however, forgot is that the captain -if not in his capacity of a lawmaker -has a large following not in Bangladesh but also abroad. Here is a man who has carved a niche in the hearts of the nation. The doctor should have minded his language! He may be a child cancer specialist and his service may be highly important but he is no brand for Bangladesh, but cricketers like Mashrafe and Shakib are. Bangladesh gains in stature, courtesy of such cricketers and sports personalities. Yes, the physician belongs to a noble profession but that a large number of members of his medical fraternity have brought disrepute to the profession cannot be denied. Professional dishonesty as is clear from the absence of four doctors from Narail hospital duty at the same time has even prompted the country's prime minister to warn them on such truancy.
Sportsmen of great calibre do not cure physical ailments but they cure psychic inertia and inspire a nation to go beyond the boundary and perform at the highest level on other fronts as well. There are many things to learn from them but one thing that often escapes notice is their frankness and humility. How gracefully Serena Williams accepted her defeat to Simona Halep in the Wimbledon on Saturday last! An epitome of softness in mien, she was majestic even in her defeat. So was her conqueror, with each one praising the other. Even a Virat Kohli, captain of Team India, not famous for coolness in temper like his predecessor, accepted his team's defeat gracefully and praised the underdog New Zealand. Most great champions are childlike. Shakib and Mashrafe can be role models for the nation in this regard. The cancer specialist would do well if he learnt a lesson of humility from them.
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