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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Don't like Dulabhai, don't like Dholabhai

Insatiable. Never happy with any given situation. Not sure exactly which situation we want and even when we get close to determining what we want, we never bother to implement it in real life. Take for example a macro level scenario. There had been times when we had been unhappy under begum alpha. There had been times when we had been unhappy under begum beta. Even after the transition in Bangladesh from 1/11 onwards in 2007, there are unhappy voices with the present situation. The fact remains that there will always be problems, more or less, but we keep on complaining that the glass is still empty, without realizing that it has been gradually filled up from the top.

Take a further micro level case. A growing number of voices have been heard particularly from our telco friends, foes and family that the amount of money the expatriates in those companies draw as salary is simply outrageous and without any logic. What is the salary drawn by our mentors and masters from Malaysia, Norway, Pakistan and Egypt? Some argue that there are no guidelines for foreigners working in Bangladesh in terms of the amount of money they can earn per month. To be more specific, the telco industry does not have any regulations in fixing the maximum number of expats allowed to work in a particular company. Whereas Bangladesh Bank had regulated that a certain number of foreigners are allowed to consist in the bank’s core management team/board etc. All these, are words of the budding telecom professionals who did experience ‘some raise’ in their salaries, however they believe, they deserve more…or conversely, they think the expats should get less.

So if we think we are of equal caliber if not better than our ‘dholabhais’, how do we define the behaviour we show when we express our reservations against foreign consultants ‘who are actually of Bangladeshi origin holding foreign passports’ and who are invited to implement or advise different development projects in the country? People unwillingly utter their dissatisfaction over a ‘corridor-smoke-break’ that ‘khamokha bangali ek beta re niye ashche ar dollar e poisha ditese…ki jaane oi beta!’..(For nothing they have brought a Bangali chap and feeding him with Dollars, what does he know!).

So it goes without saying that we are neither happy with the fact that our bideshi bosses are getting an unbelievable amount of salary given the Bangladeshi context nor we are happy when we see a Bangladeshi expat getting paid in US currency which is also high in the Bangladeshi context (actually in both cases its us who are actually getting paid less…isn’t it?). So the floor is open for debate. If we are unhappy that friends from the east, middle east and West are drawing more than they deserve, we should formulate our arguments. Also, if we remain unhappy with the fact that foreign passport holding Bangladeshis are also not up to the mark to carry out local projects, we should be having clear understanding of our judgments. Being unhappy with any situation we are put into will not us lead anywhere, for the time being.

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