Recently what happened at Bhola is an identical repetition of what happpened at Ramu, a few years back. History repeats but not in an identical pattern but crime committed by the fundamentalists do tend to repeat identically in Bangladesh, none has any doubt to understand how and by whom the crime has been committed. This time again an innocent boy belonging to minority community has been made an escape-goat. The facebook account of the boy was hacked and from there malicious content was uploaded by the plotters in the same identical way. The incidental evidences so far gathered leave a message to the conscious citizens that Bhola attack did not happen, rather it was carefully orchestrated. It’s clear that the purpose of the attack was to spread communal violence across the country to embarrass as well as destabilise the country. The ordinary people quite aware as to who, why and how committed the offence in the shortest time.
The ugly incident in Bhola regarding killing of a university student who is said to have linked with Jamaat and that there are evidences that the Islami Chhatra Shibir activists were directly involved in the incident. It is well known to all that an organized group of Islami Chhatra Shibir is active on the social media. They are opening facebook profiles in different names like Basher Kella and spreading venom. This notorious group has launched a hate campaign against the incumbent government to destabilise the country. They not only hacked the facebook ID of the boy from the Hindu family and uploaded hateful information about the Prophet, but also gave facebook status criticizing Sheikh Hasina’s recent visit to India.
Despite all their evil design and spreading negative information, the administration, the law enforcing agencies and especially the Prime Minister took immediate action and assured of taking punitive measures against the culprits. But the fact of the matter is following the facebook status incidents of violence shook the whole country. The opposition who worked behind the Bhola event tried to capitalize on the issue. They demanded resignation of the government. But why the demand for resignation? What is their fault? The evil design of Jamaat-Shibir and BNP worked behind the Bhola incident. It is BNP, Jamaat’s old ally, who did the crime. The government took drastic action to contain the situation and take the culprits to the task. Even the law enforcing agencies took no time to go for action. In fact the opposition has no issue at all. After the polls they are trying to make issue on various grounds against the government, but have failed. This time they tried to make Bhola incident an issue. Since the incident took place in Bhola the opposition leaders have been telling that the fall of the government is imminent.
Now the incident at Bhola again takes place to tarnish the image of the country, to prove that the Sheikh Hasina’s government claim of maintaining communal harmony is nothing but a hoax, to prove that the administration is not competent enough to deal with such problem and also to prove that Bangladesh is not a safe country for the religious minorities. This time the opposition has taken up the issue very quickly. New progress has developed and Gano Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain is willing to meet BNP Chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia. This is a kind of technique to draw attention of the foreign diplomats as well.
The art of making the minorities escape goat has been a practice since 1947. Those who practice religion as a political issue have been doing so in this manner from time to time. This happened time and again during election time. It is also practiced by those who do not get a political issue to fight with. The present reality of Bangladesh is that the opposition has been involved in committing political crime for the last 12 years failing to build movement in the street in a democratic way. The people did not respond to their call because of their negative approach in politics. The main purpose of their evil design is to overthrow the incumbent government. But they have failed to motivate the people against the government of Sheikh Hasina that has been running the country for three consecutive terms. The country now holds a prestigious position and it’s very difficult for the opposition to go for rigorous movement. So there is restlessness and the oppositions are trying to make non-issue an issue to oust the government.
The stubborn, pro-people and dynamic leadership of Sheikh Hasina have successfully contained the opposition’s destructive movement. Failing to wage movement against this government the oppositions are now out to bring an end to the government of Sheikh Hasina through unfair means. It was a wrong practice to use religious communalism for political gain. A Hindu innocent boy of Bhola who has no knowledge of hacking has been the scape goat. The rumor was being spread so that hundreds of Muslims came out from their house and took to the street. So the call to the Muslim to unite and join the gathering is just to give a threat to the minorities. This time the attack was in a temple and some families and houses.
The attack on the religious minorities should not happen again and again. A comprehensive enquiry is necessary to find out the causative factors of such incidents and punish the quarters responsible for it. The government should take sharp measures so that such incidents never take place again. It is also time to inquire about the cause of such event and launch a rigorous motivational campaign among the minority so that such event does not occur again in future.
The undesirable incident occurred at Bhola and so many other places in the country during general election and also in respect of settling the minority rights over abandonee property and even in observance of religious righteous had been happening in the country for long time. Despite government’s sincere effort to counteract it the religious fundamentalists creates such problems off and on whenever they get an opportunity.
Dr S A Malek is the former political adviser to the Prime Minister and Member of Parliament, general secretary of Bangabandhu Parishad and columnist