In protest of communal violence in different parts of the country including Lohagara in Narail, the platform social resistance committee of 66 women, human rights and development organizations of the country organized a human chain program in front of Shahbagh National Museum on 18 July 2022, Monday, at 4 pm.
The human chain was presided over by the president of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad, Dr Fauzia Moslem.
Shahnaz Sumi, deputy director of Bangladesh Nari Pragati Sangha, Tuhin Akhter, representative of Action Aid Bangladesh, Rehana Begum of Mass Literacy Campaign, Sahida Parveen Shikha of Trade Union Centre, Belal Hossain from Kormojibi Nari, Sanchita Talukder of IED, Shiuli Talukder of Nari Mukti Sangsad and Maleka Banu General Secretary of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) spoke. Also, representatives of Social Resistance Committee member organizations Trust, Women for Women, Deepta Foundation and Women Journalist Center were present in the human chain.
Human Rights Culture Foundation expresses solidarity with human bonds.
All over the country, including Lohagara in Narail, there have been allegations of blasphemy on social media, arrest and harassment of teachers from minority communities for blasphemy, insulting and defamation of non-communal progressive thinkers, and one after the other communal violence has caused intense anger, shame and expressing hatred. The speakers said, even after 51 years of independence, the country could not be freed from communalism. Day after day, the lack of justice in these incidents has given more leeway to the perpetrators of such violence.
From communal violence students, teachers, and progressives are not left out. Radical fundamentalist groups are using religion as a tool to further their interests on false charges of defamation, and the real criminals, along with the abettors and patrons involved in these incidents, remain unaccounted for. In this regard, the indifference and lack of self-will of law enforcement officers are visible. The silent role of the state, government, administration, and law and order forces in the incidents of communal attacks one after another has raised many questions in the public mind.
Such an incident is uncalled for when the pro-independence party is currently in power in the country, and it also raises questions about whether the state is afraid of radical fundamentalist forces. Extremist communal groups have become more active as a result of day-by-day impunity. It is the responsibility of the state to ensure the safety of every citizen, the speakers claimed that the state has failed to fulfil its responsibility. The speakers also called for stopping the culture of impunity, ensuring the safety of all citizens, bringing the real criminals under the law, unmasking the extremist communal groups, making the administration and law enforcement agencies active, holding them accountable and holding the government accountable.
Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) general secretary Maleka Banu said that,
The constitution of Bangladesh has promised to protect the rights of all people but today it is being violated. The dirty game of communal politics has started in this country. To get rid of this, a rule of law must be established. Because even though these incidents happened in front of the administration, not a single incident has been prosecuted till date.
In addition to taking state measures to prevent communal violence, she called on the people to unite and integrate social forces and also to the members of parliament to come forward to stop and prevent communal violence in their respective areas including discussing this issue in the parliament.
In the president’s speech, the president of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) Dr. Fauzia Moslem said-
The dreamy construction that we had done through the liberation war is being destroyed through communal solidarity. The inhumane, heinous communal violence that took place in Ramu in 2012 has yet to be prosecuted. It is this injustice that has become dark for the people. Despite the incidents of violence against the Hindu community in the country, the people behind the incidents cannot be identified. In this case, she demanded to look into whether there is laxity in fulfilling the state’s responsibilities or not. Besides, she pointed out that other laws including the Digital Security Act are being implemented with special purpose without ensuring proper use of social media. She concluded her speech by calling on all incidents like communal violence to be discussed in the National Assembly and to prove the responsibility of the government in protecting the lives and property of the people.
Mrs. Goswami, Advocacy Lobby Director of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) conducted the human chain.About 80 people including the leaders of the social resistance committee, representatives and vice president of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad, Rekha Chowdhury, joint general secretary Seema Moslem, training secretary Reena Ahmed, Dhaka metropolitan branch leaders, officials, print and electronic media were present in the meeting.
The report on human shackles is published in a total of 9 remedies. 6 national dailies ( Prothom Alo, New Age, Sangbad, Samakal, Janakanth, Bhorer Kagaz) and Published in 2 online newspapers (Dhaka Tribune, Bangla Tribune).