Helen, Lutfunnahar

Helen, Lutfunnahar (1947-1971) educationist, martyr intellectual. She was born on 28 December 1947 in Magura. Her paternal home was at village Harekrishnapur in Mohammadpur thana of Magura district. Her father Fazlul Huq was a leader of NAP and Krishak Samiti of Magura and her mother was Safura Khatun. Lutfunnahar Helen passed matriculation examination in 1963 and IA from Magura College in 1965. She obtained her graduation in 1968 from Rajshahi University. She began her career as a teacher at Magura Girls' High School.

Lutfunnahar Helen was associated with the progressive student movement even when she was a student. While a student in school she participated in education movement and in anti-Ayub democratic movement in 1962. She was the secretary of women affairs of students union in Magura College. Later she was the vice president of the Magura subdivisional unit of East Pakistan Student Union. She also participated in mass upsurge of 1969.

Lutfunnahar Helen joined the war of liberation in 1971 along with her brothers. During the war of liberation the freedom fighters took over the Rajakar camp at Mohammadpur thana proper and established there the training centre for the freedom fighters. Helen came to Mohammadpur at the end of July and started her activities in motivating the local people to join the war. Helen started work as an informer of the freedom fighters reporting on the movement and activities of the Rajakars and the Pakistani army. Besides she devoted herself to the treatment of the wounded freedom fighters and to the supply of provisions and in inspiring the girls to join the liberation war.

At the end of September, a group of the Rajakars captured Helen along with her male child while working in a village in southern area of Mohammadpur thana and was handed over to the army camp in Magura. Later her son was sent back home while she was kept confined. On 5 October 1971 the Pak army brutally killed her. They tied her to the jeep and dragged her to the diversion canal of Nabaganga river, about one and a half mile away. Her dead body could not be traced.

The Postal Department of the Government of Bangladesh issued commemorative postal stamp in the name of Lutfunnahar Helen on the Martyred Intellectual Day on 14 December 1995 in recognition of her contribution and sacrifice to the War of Liberation. [Lilyma Ahmed]