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Dhaka Tribune

BNP: Withdraw army officials from RAB

Update : 20 May 2014, 08:56 PM

The BNP, which demands that the Rapid Action Battalion be dissolved, says the army should withdraw its officials from the elite force “to protect its image.”

“RAB’s activities should be stopped immediately and the army should withdraw its officials from RAB for the sake of its good image,” BNP Vice-Chairman Sadeque Hossain Khoka said yesterday.

“There has been a conspiracy going on to tarnish the image of the armed forces, using RAB for political purposes. The allegation of three former military officials’ involvement in the Narayanganj killings damaged the army’s image seriously,” he said, addressing a protest rally organised by the Dhaka city unit BNP.

Khoka said: “RAB was formed with members from different forces. It did good work when the BNP was in power but now it is being used for political purposes, which tarnished its image.

“The armed force, which played an important role in the Liberation War, is now being used to kill people and loot money. It is a conspiracy.”

The freedom fighter said: “During the Liberation War I saw how a major sacrificed his life for the country. But today, a major is killing people just for money. It could not be continued.”

BNP acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir claimed that abduction, killing and forced disappearance had become a common phenomenon and RAB was the prime suspect in all these incidents.

“RAB was formed during the BNP government to control militancy and terrorism. It did a good job at that time. But since assuming office, the [Awami League] government has been using the force for political purposes and turned the organisation into a mercenary force,” he said.

Terming the country a “death valley,” Fakhrul said: “People raised voice after the Narayanganj killings. A case was filed against RAB in Laksam of Comilla. Elected Dhaka city councillor Chowdhury Alam was abducted three years ago and is yet to be traced. Twenty-two Dhaka city unit leaders have been abducted.”

Reiterating the party’s demand for fresh elections, the BNP spokesperson told the government to hold elections under a non-partisan interim government, “otherwise tough movement will be launched.”

Khoka demanded formation of a judicial probe committee to unearth the mystery of Narayanganj killing.

Meanwhile, at a programme in Rajshahi city yesterday, BNP Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi alleged that the government had shown the three former RAB officials arrested under section 54 to hide its misdeeds.

He alleged that the law enforcement agencies fired at processions of the BNP at the instructions of the government, reports our correspondent in Rajshahi.

“Now a resistance will be built. The government will collapse at the slight push from the people,” he said, addressing a protest programme against the transfer of a case against party Chairperson Khaleda Zia, abductions and killings countrywide, and “false” cases against the party’s leaders and activists.

Another joint secretary general of the party and Rajshahi city unit President Mizanur Rahman Minu presided over the programme at the Bhuban Mohan Park in the city.

Later, a procession brought out from there paraded the streets in the city. 

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