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Dhaka Tribune

Hefazat-e-Islam threatens to take over Bangabhaban

Update : 28 Apr 2013, 04:05 AM

 

The Hefazat-e-Islam Bangladesh has threatened to “take over” Bangabhaban, official residence of the president, unless its 13-points demand are met before May 5.

The Islamists are said to besiege Dhaka on the day in support of their demands.

The threat came from a rally organised by the group in the capital’s Lalbagh yesterday. The meeting was aimed at raising support for their demands that include reinstating the phrase “Absolute trust and faith in the Almighty Allah” in Bangladesh’s Constitution, which they want as one of the fundamental principles of state policy.

“We will take over Bangabhaban if the government does not fulfil our demands within May 4,” said Maulana Toiyub of Hefazat’s Dhaka unit.

He said the incident in Savar was a “a curse from Almighty Allah”, because a public rally was called by and for women, which was meant to take place in Motijheel yesterday, but cancelled due to the situation in Savar. He warned similar “curses” might befall even the Prime Minister’s Office, the secretariat and Bangabhaban. 

Addressing the gathering, Hefazat’s advisor Maulana Shah Ahmadullah Ashraf said: “[Prime Minister Sheikh] Hasina and other atheists will not be allowed to leave the country. They will be tried in this country.”

They declared May 5 would prove whether Islam or the “atheists” would prevail in Bangladesh.

The Islamist group originating in Chittagong, began demonstrating and declared the 13-point demand days after the mass movement took off in the capital’s Shahbagh on February 5 demanding capital punishment for those guilty of committing crimes against humanity during the Liberation War of 1971.

The Shahbagh protesters also demanded ban on Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami and its student wing Islami Chhatra Shibir.

Hefazat called on activists to march to Dhaka, where a mass rally was held in the city’s Motijheel, with thousands of supporters, where their 13-points were declared. Hefazat’sAllama Shah Ahmed Shafi threatened to lay a seize to Dhaka unless the government met their demands, which includes death penalty for “atheist bloggers”, leaders of the Shahbagh movement, revoking women’s development policies and the government’s education policy, as well as removal of sculptures, and release of leaders and supporters under arrest.

“The government will not have the right to stay in power from May 6 if it does not fulfil the demands by May 5,” threatened Abul Hasnat Amini, son of late Mufti Fazlul Huq Amini whose party Islami Oikyo Jote (IOJ) is also an ally of the 18-party opposition alliance.

Mufti Fayez Ullah, joint secretary general of Hefazat and also secretary general of a fraction of the IOJ, said if the demands were not fulfilled by May 5, the holy Quran would be replaced as the country’s constitution from the next day.

Hefazat rally in Narayanganj

Our correspondent from Narayanganj adds: Hefazat yesterday staged a rally on BB road in Narayanganj town to press their 13-point demand. They also demanded capital punishment of the “atheist” bloggers.

Speakers at the rally said they would continue their fight until the demands were met.

Abdul Awal, The convener of district unit of Hefazat-e-Islam, who is also an Imam and a founder of a Qawmi madrasa, presided over the rally.

The rally, in front of railway colony central mosque, occupied almost two kilometres roads up to Chashara – the northern part of the city.

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