The parade goes on | Paterson Times

The parade goes on

Courtesy of PatersonNJ.gov

On Tuesday evening some residents of Paterson received robocalls inviting them to what appears to be the 1st Bangladeshi-American parade set to take place on Sunday, June 16th, 2013.

The much contested event organized by Dewan Bojlu Chowdhury, a resident of Haledon, was nearly cancelled last week when more than 500 people signed a petition to have the event’s permit nullified. The reason? Mr Chowdhury did not inform the elder members of the Bangldeshi Community prior to scheduling his parade, and many of them disliked his outsider status, an individual from Haledon hosting a parade in Paterson.

Mohammed Akhtaruzzaman, the 2nd Ward councilman, found himself in a dilemma when he realized an inevitable schism was taking place inside his community. Mr Akhtaruzzaman attempted to reconcile the supporters of Mr Chowdhury and his detractors, those who signed the petition to have the parade cancelled, by setting up a meeting with about 100 people to reach some sort of a resolution; however, that meeting erupted in violence on Saturday that left two men assaulted.

On Tuesday afternoon Mr Akhtaruzzaman setup another meeting, this time with a much smaller crowd, in his Union Avenue meeting location, mainly consisting of influential older men of the community who were less prone to violence. The meeting was a success; Mr Akhtaruzzaman and a few others later that day, during a council meeting announced the matter had been resolved and the petition with 500 signature ought to be ignored safely.

Mr Chowdhury, who announced at the council meeting that there were no complaints about his parade, must have been ecstatic to be accepted as the man in charge of the parade, despite being an outsider, and all. Mr Akhtaruzzaman whose authority was questioned the whole time as discussion ensued over the parade must be equally happy to have this nasty matter behind him.