BNP, Jamaat-e-Islami behind series of killings to destabilise Bangladesh, says Hasina

The BNP and Jamaat-e-Islami are carrying out ‘planned’ killings to destabilise Bangladesh, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said.

Published : 25 April 2016, 04:48 PM
Updated : 26 April 2016, 11:43 AM

She laid the blame squarely on the rivals of her Awami League at a meeting with party leaders at Ganabhaban on Monday in the light of the murder of a Rajshahi University teacher and two people in a flat in Kalabagan.

Her Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim said: “The prime minister has said everyone realises who are behind these murders. The BNP and Jamaat are doing them under various guises.

“They have been burning people dead and committing other terrorist acts to destabilise the country from the time of the last general election,” he quoted the head of the government as saying.

A few hours before Hasina made the remarks at a meeting of the party’s selection board to finalise the party candidates for the municipality and Union Parishad elections, unknown assailants hacked to death two men – Xulhaz Mannan and Mahbub Rabbi Tonoy – in a flat in Dhaka’s Kalabagan.  

USAID official Xulhaz was cousin to Awami League Joint General Secretary and former foreign minister Dipu Moni.

He was vocal in advocacy of gay rights. Tonoy, the other person killed, was a theatre activist.

Their murder bore strking similarities with the manner in which Rajshahi University teacher AFM Rezaul Karim Siddiquee was killed two days ago.

Law-enforcing agencies suspect the involvement of militants in Siddiquee’s murder. Those arrested in connection with murders of foreigners earlier were also members of militant outfits.

“The killers will be caught. They will be brought to book,” the prime minister said.

Except in murder of blogger Ahmed Rajib Haider, the police have made several arrests in other cases but has been criticised for failing to complete the investigations.

The BNP claims the series of killing have been possible because of what it calls an ‘absence of justice’ and blames government failure. 

Hasina said, “Such killings are not a routine law-and-order issue. These planned murders aim at destabilising the country. They are being committed at a time when the country making progress in every field.

She urged people to be vigilant against such ‘evil forces’ and help by providing information regarding them.

“The law-enforcing agencies are in a state of alert. We must together rebuff this evil force,” the prime minister said.