• Sunday, Nov 28, 2021
  • Last Update : 08:39 pm

ED: No country for minorities

  • Published at 06:12 am October 18th, 2021
Noakhali idols vandalised
FILE PHOTO: A group of people takes out a rally and carried out attacks on Durga Puja venues and Hindu homes in Begumganj upazila's Chowmuhani on Friday, October 15, 2021 Collected

Communal violence of any kind leaves us as a weaker nation

Earlier last week, this newspaper had editorialized on the increased security that was to be ensured this year for Durga Puja. The editorial was laudatory and hopeful, that this year, our Hindu population would feel safe over the week of Puja rituals and festivities. 

It is, thus, extremely unfortunate that, once again, we are having to editorialize, not on a hopeful note, but expressing sorrow and disappointment, as Bangladesh is engulfed in disharmony and sorrow following the heinous acts of miscreants who attacked the Hindu and in some cases Buddhist communities following the Durga Puja festivities.

Be it attacks on Hindu temples and Puja venues, or Buddhist households, or Christian workplaces, communal violence of any kind, where the minority population is targeted as a result of hate, leaves us as a weaker nation, one which divides our people, harbouring hostilities within communities. 

This has been going on for far too long, and despite the progress we may have made in tackling communal violence, it rears its ugly head, over and over, every year. Identifying and arresting those who carried out these attacks, as well as those who were responsible for fanning the flames of unrest is just the first step, and at this point, not nearly enough.

There's plenty of chatter about these incidents being planned to destabilize the country, and chatter about misunderstanding, misinterpretation, and misinformation. Whatever the reason may be, it is our minority population who suffer the consequences, and nothing short of concrete action will be enough to protect our people. 

Bangladesh may be progressing and we may be a model for the developing world. However, it is only when we are serious about becoming a nation where every person, regardless of their background, feels safe, will we truly be making progress. Despite our secular foundation, at this stage, Bangladesh appears to be no country for its minorities.

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