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Friday, September 18, 2009

Bangladeshi minorities in volatile situation: American Chronicle

Source: Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury
American Chronicle

On Friday, September 11, 2009, a group of 10-12 armed cadres of the ruling party suddenly attacked House number 88, 96 and 98 at Reboti Mohon Das Lane at Dhaka at around 1:00 pm.

Only 18 days back, a group of ruling party thugs abducted, tortured and raped members of another minority family at city´s Sutrapur area, which came in the local and international media. But, the government did not take any action against the culprits belonging to the ruling party.

Now, just in less than three weeks of the notorious incident of grabbing Hindu property at Sutrapure area only 18 days back, another incident took place at broad day light on Friday, September 11.

Resident of 88, 96 and 98 at Reboti Mohon Das Lane, Ms. Bashanti Rani told reporters that, they have been living on this land for decades. But, since Awami League came in power in January 2009, four Hindu families were evacuated from this property in March by groups of thugs under the command of local Awami League leader. The ruling party thugs were threatening remaining 11 families on the property for months.

At around 1 p.m. on Friday, a groups of armed thugs belonging to the ruling party went to the spot and asked the Hindu residents to immediate leave the property. As the Hindu family members started shouting seeking help from the neighborhood, local people got organized and chased the miscreants, who started shooting from fire arms and went inside Sutrapur police station and took refuge. Local people surrounded the police station and demanded immediate action against the culprits. But, police, instead of arresting the criminals, rather denied to lodge any complaint from the Hindu families and accorded VIP entertainment to the ruling party thugs inside the police station and escorted them up to the adjacent office of Bangladesh Awami League.

It is alleged that the ruling party thugs were led by Nizam Uddin Nizam [President, Bangladesh Awami League, Ward No 80] and his brother Abdul Qaiyum. While contacted the Awami League leader denied the fact of his any hands behind attempt to vacate the Hindu property, but he said, the Hindu families were residing there illegally.

Officer-in-charge of Sutrapur police station, Tofazzal Hussain said, the Hindu families are living on the property illegally so the police did not accord any protection to them. It may be mentioned here that, the much publicized abduction and rape incident of Hindu families took place 18 days back under direct patronization of the same officer-in-charge of Sutrapur police station.

Members of law enforcing agencies repeatedly said in past that there is verbal instruction on all police stations to ignore any incident where ruling party members are involved.

It may be mentioned here that, on February 22, 2009, a group of ruling party thugs led by one Shamim from Directorate General of Forces Intellogence [DGFI] attacked the office of Weekly Blitz on broad day light in presence of members of law enforcing agencies and looted valuables thus physically assaulting the members of the newspaper. On the same day a case was lodged with Paltan Police Station in Dhaka. But, till date, neither the police arrested the culprits nor there is any sign of investigation into the matter.Several officers of Paltan police station told reporters that, they were instructed to refrain from taking any action against the ruling party thugs, who were behind attack on the newspaper office on February 22, 2009. At such situation, various forms of criminal activities by the members of the ruling party are continuing in the country almost on a daily basis. And, now here is another disturbing news of attack on Hindu temple by some miscreants belonging to the ruling party at Bangladesh´s southern district of Kushtia.

According to information, several perpetrators entered two Temples at Kushtia, damaged Hindu deities´ Sunday, September 07, 2009 at night. Such tragic incident took place in the Hindu neighborhood just few weeks before the biggest Hindu festival named Durga Puja.There are two temples named "Halder Matri Sarbajanin Durga Mandir" and " Raj Kumar Kali Mandir" which are know as oldest in the locality. On the day of incident, criminals broke door locks and entered the temples, demolished Durga and Kali deities. Naba Kumar Dutta – President of Bangladesh Puja Ujjapan Parishad of Kumar Khali Upazila expressed grave concern at the heinous act on the deities and demanded exemplary punishment of the perpetrators. He said, no civilized society can tolerate such crime against religion. On initial investigation it was found that some local political thugs demanded extortion from the Hindus on the eve of Muslim festival named Eid. Being failed to extract money from the Hindu community, ruling party thugs staged such notoriety on temples with the ulterior motive of creating reign of terror in the locality.Biggest Hindu festival Durga Puja will be celebrated throughout the world during end of September this year. In all previous years, government accorded proper protection to temples around the country. But, this year, for the first time, Hindu temples are attacked and deities demolished weeks before the festival, which surely will not leave good signal for the present government in Bangladesh.

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