New anti-terror law passed

The government has pushed through Parliament the Anti-Terrorism (Amendment) Bill, 2013 to curb terrorism through inter-state cooperation amid a walkout by the opposition MPs.

Published : 11 June 2013, 08:30 AM
Updated : 11 June 2013, 08:30 AM

The new law allows court to accept videos, still photographs and audio clips, chats and conversation used on the social media such as Facebook, Skype and Twitter.

It will provide a maximum jail term of 20 years and maximum fine of Tk 2 million for funding acts of terrorism.

Senior BNP lawmaker Moudud Ahmed took the floor to say: “The law doesn’t aim at curbing terrorism; instead, it will be misused for repressing the opposition. The law will be identified as a black law since it it provides enough authority to subdue the Opposition.”
The BNP MPs staged a brief walkout before the passage of the Bill but returned at the beginning of the discussion on the proposed budget.
Home Minister Muhiuddin Khan Alamgir moved the Bill that was passed by voice vote.
The minister said, to effectively check all sorts of terrorism, amendments to the current law was needed to incorporate other forms of terrorism in keeping with the UN regulations and convention and following inter-states discussions.
The Bill was placed in Parliament on Mar 3 and later sent to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Ministry of Home Affairs for scrutiny.
The existing Anti-Terrorism Act, 2013 was promulgated in 2009 to prevent terrorism such as killing, carrying and use of arms and ammunition and other flammable objects to create panic and to check terror financing as well.
BNP lawmakers Shahid Uddin Chowdhury Annie, Mahbub Uddin Khokon, Jafrul Islam Chowdhury, Abul Khair, Harunur Rashid, Nazim Uddin, Syeda Asifa Ashrafi Papia, Lutfar Rahman, Nilufar Chowdhury Moni, AKM Hafizur Rahman, Rasheda Begum Hira, Rehana Akter Ranu and ZIM Mostafa Ali took part in the discussion on the proposal to conduct a public opinion on the Bbill and send it to the scrutiny committee.
But the proposal was rejected by voice votes.