Home minister backs PM Hasina who blames Khaleda for recent murders, attacks

The home minister has described as ‘correct’ Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s remarks holding BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia responsible for the recent murders and attacks in Bangladesh.

Staff Correspondentbdnews24.com
Published : 3 Nov 2015, 03:28 PM
Updated : 3 Nov 2015, 04:54 PM

“The prime minister was certain when she made the comments. The prime minister’s remarks are correct,” Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal told reporters at the Secretariat on Tuesday.

Hasina on Monday said Khaleda had orchestrated these murders in order to destabilise the country and thwart the trials of the 1971 war criminals.

Her remarks had come in the backdrop of the murders of two foreigners and a publisher, attack on another publisher and two writers, and ahead of the hearing of the review petitions of death-row war criminals Salauddin Quader Chowdhury and Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujahid.

One of the suspects police arrested so far in connection with the killing of two foreign nationals is a relative of BNP leader Habib-Un Nabi Khan Sohel, who also heads the party’s volunteer wing, Jatiyatabadi Swechchhasebak Dal.

The home minister also recently said that politicians were involved in the plot to murder the foreigners.

He on Tuesday said, “The conspirators, planners and financiers of these incidents will not be spared.”

“Wherever they are, inside or outside the country or in London, they will be brought back home and made to face justice.”

Rejecting the allegations made by the ruling Awami League leaders, the BNP has been saying that such remarks by government high-ups will let the real killers escape.

Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal also said that all Islamist radicals in Bangladesh had roots in the Jamaat-e-Islami, the party that opposed the 1971 Liberation struggle and sided with Pakistan.

He hinted at the involvement of the Jamaat and its student wing Islami Chhatra Shibir in the murder of four bloggers and a publisher.

“Those who opposed the country’s independence are carrying out these murders. They also murdered Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and four national leaders.”

He continued, “They changed names at different times to commit these crimes. An analysis of the past will show that all these people believe in the politics of Jamaat and Shibir.

“They used to cut tendons before, now they are slitting throats,” the minister alleged.

‘Highest measures’ to bring killers back

Earlier in the morning, the home minister spoke to reporters after offering special prayers and paying respect at the memorial of four national leaders inside Dhaka Central Jail.

Replying to a question, he said the government had taken the highest possible measures to bring the killers of Bangabandhu and the four leaders.

“We took the highest measures at the state level for the fugitives’ extradition. We don’t have that kind of deal with many countries. That’s why we’re facing some problems. But our attempts won’t stop.”

A rogue section of the army had assumed power after the assassination of Bangabandhu and most of his family members on Aug 15, 1975.

Four national leaders - acting president Syed Nazrul Islam, prime minister Tajuddin Ahmed and Cabinet ministers M Mansur Ali and AHM Qamruzzaman - were arrested soon after the assassinations.

On Nov 3 that year, they were murdered in the prison amid the army coup and counter-coup outside to seize power.

The day Bangladesh was robbed of its top national leaders has since been remembered as the Jail Killing Day.

The prime minister on Monday had said that her government would bring to justice the people who had sheltered or rehabilitated those involved in the murder of the four leaders.

Regarding her remarks, Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal told reporters, “What the prime minister says is final.”

When asked, he also said the government would seek Interpol’s help in the matter.

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher