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Tabligh Jamaat faction holds rally in Uttara

  • Published at 01:48 pm December 4th, 2018
Police hang a notice, barring entry to the Ijtema ground in Tongi on Tuesday; December 4, 2018; following the clash on Saturday, December 1, 2018; that left one people killed and several injured Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

They demanded justice for a Tabligh Jamaat member killed in clashes on Saturday

A faction of the Sunni Islamic movement, Tabligh Jamaat, has organized a rally in Abdullahpur area of Uttara. They were protesting the death of one person during Saturday’s factional clash at the Biswa Ijtema grounds in Tongi—and demanded that the culprits  be brought to justice.

Followers of Maulana Jubaer – who opposes the faction loyal to controversial Indian preacher Maulana Muhammad Saad Al Kandhalvi – reportedly organized the peaceful rally around 10:30am on Tuesday.

Confirming the matter to the Dhaka Tribune, a follower of Maulana Saad, Maulana Ashraf said: “Another faction of Tabligh Jamaat held the rally, we were not involved with that event. 

“At a recently-held press conference, the son of the deceased man – Ismail Hossain – said his father was a follower of Maulana Saad Kandhalvi. However, everyone is free to demand justice for the deceased.”

Also Read- One killed, over 200 injured in Tabligh Jamaat factional clash in Tongi

Meanwhile, a member of the faction that opposes Maulana Saad, Maulana Shahriar Mahmud said: “Small demonstrations such as this rally are being held across the country, but these events are not receiving proper media coverage.”

Responding to a question, Dhaka Metropolitan Police (Uttara Zone) Assistant Commissioner Khandaker Rezaul Hassan said: “A faction of Tabligh held a rally around 10:30am, in Uttara, demanding justice for the death of one person in an internal clash on Saturday.

“The rally lasted 10-15 minutes and was held peacefully.”

What happened at Saturday’s clash?

At least one person was killed in a series of clashes between two factions of Tabligh Jamaat that were trying to establish their dominance over the Bishwa Ijtema grounds.

More than 200 people were also injured in the clashes.

What is this fight all about?

In January, hundreds of members of the Bangladesh chapter of the Islamic movement, Tabligh Jamaat, and some Qawmi madrasa “alems” – clerics –, staged a demonstration near Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka—protesting the arrival of Indian preacher Maulana Saad.

Facing stern opposition from a faction of Tabligh Jamaat, Maulana Saad had to return to New Delhi without attending Biswa Ijtema—the second largest religious congregation of Muslims after Hajj.

Also Read- Case filed over Tabligh-Jamaat factional clashes

The radical Islamic organization Hefazat-e-Islam initially tried to prevent Maulana Saad’s arrival—because they were strongly opposed to his participation in Ijtema activities and opposed his statements made during the last Bishwa Ijtema.

Their opposition stemmed from allegations, by Hefazat leaders, that he made “controversial statements about the Quran and Sunnah.” 

Tabligh’s Bangladesh chapter split into two groups following disputes between its top leaders. Both factions wanted to establish their dominance over the group’s followers and disagreed about Maulani Saad’s visit.

The government, on September 18, issued five directives to resolve Tabligh Jamaat’s internal disputes and ensure they carry out their activities in an organized manner.

Also Read- Tabligh Jamaat faction blames administration for clash

Currently, Maulani Saad’s followers in Bangladesh are not allowed into the Tabligh Jamaat Bangladesh chapter’s “markaz” – headquarters– at the Kakrail Mosque in Dhaka.

The government decided to postpone Bishwa Ijtema due to the ongoing dispute between the factions and the upcoming 11th parliamentary election—which is slated for December 30.

Held every winter in Bangladesh, the next Ijtema was supposed to be held the second or third week of January.

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