Compilation: Hefazat-e-Islam Long March
Dhaka, Apr 7 (Priyo.com): Hefajat-e-Islam Bangladesh had hosted the biggest-ever showdown by any Islamist group in recent times on Saturday at Shapla Chattar in the capital’s Motijheel area, aiming to push for its 13-point demand, including punishment of the bloggers who reportedly denigrated Islam and Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
The rally formally kicked off around 10:00 am with recitation from the holy Quran with Hefajat-e-Islam’s Dhaka city unit ameer Moulana Nur Hossain Kashemi in the chair.
Leaders from different tiers of Hefajat-e-Islam across the country addressed the rally with thousands of its supporters attending all through the day.
The Islamist group also called a daylong countrywide hartal for Monday protesting the government obstructions to its long march programme and repression of its activists on their way to Dhaka.
Moreover, gave the government until April 30 to meet its 13-point demand or face a ‘Dhaka Siege’ programme on May 5, 2013.
Here is a compilation of all the activities took place in couple of days.
The speakers said the movement of Hefajat-e-Islam is to save Islam and humanity from the ‘atheist’ bloggers.
Claiming that their ongoing movement is apolitical, Hefajat-e Islam Bangladesh ameer Shah Ahmad Shafi on Saturday said the government must accept their 13-point demand if it wants to stay in power. In a written statement, the Islamic leader said, “Our current movement is not political. It’ll (government) have to agree to our 13-point demand in order to continue in office.”
Hifazat-e Islam has demanded the removal of what they described as ‘atheist’ ministers from the Cabinet.
They also demanded detention of Shahriar Kabir, Nasir Uddin Yusuf Bachchu and Imran H Sarker for being ‘atheists’. The radical group, backed by the Jamaat-e-Islami, voiced their demands from their Saturday’s rally in Dhaka.
The Islamist group also called a daylong countrywide hartal for Monday protesting the government obstructions to its long march programme and repression of its activists on their way to Dhaka. Hefajat also announced to hold rallies at different parts of the country, including Sylhet, Khulna, Chittagong, Rajshahi, Mymensingh, Barisal and Bogra from April 11 to April 30 to force the government to meet its demands.
Supporters of Hifazat-e Islam have attacked a rally of Ghatak Dalal Nirmul Committee in Dhaka from their procession, police say. Witnesses said supporters of the radical group attacked the the Nirmul Committee activists who had been squatting near the Amtoli Rail Crossing in support of the strike.
The main opposition BNP on Saturday expressed solidarity with the post-long march programme of Hefajat-e-Islam to press home its 13-point demand, including punishment of the bloggers who reportedly defamed Islam and Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
BNP standing committee member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain and BNP city unit convener Sadeque Hossain Khoka arrived at the Shapla Chattar rally venue at Motijheel around 3.00 pm to express their solidarity with the programme.
Two journalists were injured in attacks allegedly by Hefajat-e-Islam activists in the city on Saturday afternoon.The injured journalists were identified as Nadira Sharmin, 24, crime reporter of Ekushey TV, and Sujan, 28, photographer of the Daily Ittefaq.
Activists of Hefazat-e-Islam Bangladesh assaulted three personnel of Channel Ekattor at Wasa intersection in the port city on Friday afternoon. Witnesses said the activists of the Islamists’ platform were staging demonstrations at Jamiatul Falah Mosque maidan protesting the government’s alleged bid to foil their long march programme.
Shahbagh Gonojagoron Mancha convener Dr Imran H Sarker on Saturday alleged that leaders and activists of Hefajat-e-Islam are obstructing programme without any incitement. They are launching pre-planned attacks on different processions and rallies for creating anarchic situation in the country, he added.
When the rally of Hefajat men at Shapla Chattar concluded several thousand activists of them tried to move towards Shahbagh Chattar through Ramna Park at about 4 am, triggering a chase and counter-chase between Shahbagh youths and Hefajat men. A pedestrian was seriously injured during the trouble. He was rushed to Dhaka Medical College Hospital.
Long march towards Dhaka will be spread across the country if the government resists the Hefajat-e Islam activists on their way to Dhaka, Junaed Babunagri, secretary of Hefajat said Friday. The leaders and activists of the party were asked to take position wherever they will be obstructed by police and ruling party men during Saturday long march.
The supporters of Hifazat-e Islam have vandalised the Brahmanbaria Railway Station after failing to purchase tickets there. Station Master Amrita Lal Debnath told reporters the incident happened on Friday after hundreds of supporters of the Jamaat-e-Islami-backed radical group queued up at the station at around 1pm to buy tickets for Dhaka. Meanwhile, a number of Islamist activists under the banner of Hifazat-e-Islam are set to start their long march to Dhaka on foot.
The volatile situation centring a radical Islamist groups’ long march today has sent a sense of happiness to the BNP-led opposition camp as its leaders believe it would favour their anti-government agitation. However, the opposition yesterday criticised the government for what it said the administration’s interference in Hefajat-e Islam’s Dhaka long march.