Dhaka, Jul 24 (bdnews24.com) - After day-long suspense over the burial site of Humayun Ahmed, his kin have reached a consensus on burying the celebrated writer and playwright at his most favourite place, Nuhash Palli, in Gazipur.
The burial would take place after Zohr prayers on Tuesday, his brother Muhammad Zafar Iqbal told reporters at State Minister for LGRD Jahangir Kabir Nanak's house in Sangsad Bhaban area in the wee hours.
Nanak, Sammilito Sangskritik Jote President Nasiruddin Yusuf Bachchu, and Channel-i Directors Faridur Reza Sagar and Shaikh Siraj mediated between Humayun's second wife Meher Afroz Shaon and the rest of his kin.
Tension mounted as Shaon and others of Humayun's kin failed to reach a consensus over his burial site.
Shaon said he would be buried at Nuhash Palli, the place he himself created. But the three children from his first wife Gultekin protested the decision saying they would not visit the place. His mother Ayesha Fayez sided with her grandchildren.
Iqbal, an author in his own right, said they compromised with Shaon as it was hard to convince her that Nuhash Palli was too far to visit easily.
"His children from his first wife wanted him to be buried at Mirpur Intellectuals' Graveyard so that they could visit the grave easily. Our mother also wanted the same.
"We tried to make Shaon understand throughout the day. But she didn't understand. It would have been better if she had understood," he added.
"His children did not want their father to be in the BIRDEM Hospital's mortuary. They want him laid in eternal rest at the earliest. So we've agreed to bury him at Nuhash Palli.
"Another reason is that we don't want the people of the country to think that we are playing tug-of-war with the corpse," Iqbal said.
Before speaking with the reporters, Iqbal met Nova, Sheela and Nuhash, the three children of Humayun and Gultekin.
They were waiting at Nanak's house as Zafar Iqbal, Nanak, Bachchu, Sagar and Siraj left them to hear the opinion of Shaon from her own mouth.
They went to Nanak's house around 9:30pm on Monday.
After meeting Shaon at Humayun's Dhanmondi residence Dakhin Hawa for over two hours, Bachchu conveyed reporters the stance of Humayun's mother quoting Iqbal around 1am on Tuesday.
"But Shaon is firm on her decision," he had said and added, "We have no role to play now. The family will take the decision."
Humayun's eldest daughter, Nova, had told a press briefing at his younger brother cartoonist Ahsan Habib's Mirpur residence on Monday evening that they did not want to see their father buried at Nuhash Palli.
She said the burial ground could be the Mirpur Intellectuals' Graveyard or elsewhere, but not Nuhash Palli.
"We want him buried at a place where anybody can pay a visit to his grave," Nova had said.
Iqbal's wife Yasmin Hoque said Humayun's children had the right to decide where their father should be buried.
Sheela and Nuhash were also there. Bipasha, the other daughter of Humayun and Gultekin, is abroad.
Meanwhile, Shaon told bdnews24.com that those who did not even bother to know about the writer during his illness had no right to decide where he should be buried.
Humayun has two sons – Ninit and Nishad – from Shaon.
The famous playwright and filmmaker's younger brother Habib had told reporters at the airport that they wanted to bury Humayun on Monday if everything went according to the plan.
"It is our mother's wish that he be buried at Mirpur or Banani. But a final decision will be made after speaking with Shaon."
But Shaon told reporters on Monday at the Shaheed Minar earlier in the day: "He had told me that everybody will fight over this issue if anything happens to him. He had told me, 'Don't let them make me suffer. Take me to Nuhash Palli. Leave me with my trees'."
The author of more than 300 bestsellers and winner of the Ekushey Padak breathed his last at a New York hospital on Jul 19 at 64 after battling with cancer for nine months.