Hasina asks Bangladeshis to raise alarm over suspected terror activities

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has asked the people to raise alarm whenever they see suspicious activities.

She issued the warning in her parliament speech hours after consoling her relatives for the death of 8-year-old Zayan Chowdhary in Easter Sunday bombings in Sri Lanka.

“We’ve firmly stopped such bomb attacks, militant attacks. I would like to tell the people to remain alert and inform the law enforcers whenever they see something abnormal,” she said.

Police’s Counterterrorism and Transnational Crime or CTTC unit chief Monirul Islam has expressed fear that the Bangladeshi militants, who are on the back foot following a crackdown on terrorism, may draw inspiration from the attacks on the South Asian neighbour.

Zayan, grandson of Hasina’s relative Awami League leader Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim, was killed along with at least 350 others in the attacks claimed by radical Islamists.

His father Moshiul Haque Chowdhary Prince survived the blast but was critically injured. The family were holidaying in Sri Lanka.

“Zayan was just a child. Only 8 years old. He is not among us today. His father is in deathbed, but has not been informed that Zayan is no more. He is asking for Zayan all the time,” Hasina said.

Speaking about the Sri Lanka attacks in parliament, Hasina again pointed out that terrorism has become a global issue.

“We don’t want such incident to occur anywhere in the world. Terrorists and militants have no religion, they have no country,” she said.

She slated the Islamist militants for using the religion in terrorism. “Those who carry out acts of terror in the name of Islam are actually tarnishing the image of the sacred religion to the human race,” she said.

Hasina recalled the killing of 50, including five Bangladeshis, in the Mar 15 shootings at two mosques in New Zealand’s Christchurch by a suspected white supremacist.

“It’s painful for the human race that some zealots hurt people even though all the religions speak for peace,” the prime minister said.

Terrorism and militancy cannot bring anything good for mankind, Hasina reminded her audience.

She condemned the recent fatal arson attack on Feni madrasa student Nusrat Jahan Rafi in reprisal for sexual abuse charges she had brought against the principal.

The suspects who carried out the attack are also students of the madrasa, including classmates of Nusrat, according to police.

“And I also see terrorism perpetrated by people. Her own classmates poured kerosene on Nusrat and burnt her alive for protesting against a crime!” Hasina said.

“Such inhumane incidents are truly vicious for humankind,” she added.