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Attacks on religious minorities slated

Home ministry orders additional security measures

Mustafizur Rahman

The home ministry on Wednesday ordered the police and the divisional commissioners to take additional measures to ensure security of the religious minorities across the country.
In separate letters, the home ministry directed the inspector general of police and the commissioners of all the seven divisions to preempt recurrence of any incident of attacks on religious minorities.
The directive was issued in the wake of such incidents in several districts after Sunday’s election. 
The letters signed by home ministry deputy secretary Khairul Kabir Menon also asked the divisional commissioners to activate mobile courts led by executive magistrates across the country to combat post-election criminal offences.
‘We also asked the IGP and all the divisional commissioners to send reports   to the home ministry on loss of life and property in the recent attacks on the religious minorities,’ a joint secretary told New Age.
Earlier, he said, deputy commissioners and police superintendents in the concerned districts were asked to report in three days on the attacks and the measures they had taken following the incidents. 
After Sunday’s polls miscreants attacked Hindu minorities in Jessore, Satkhira, Thakurgaon, Panchagarh, Chittagong, Nilphamari, Kurgram, Lalmonirhat, Satkhira, Gaibandha, Dinajpur and some other districts leaving scores of families affected.
There has been widespread demand to bring the offenders to justice.
On Wednesday, leaders of the Democratic Left Alliance and the Socialist Party of Bangladesh led by Khalequzzaman blasted the government for its inaction in protecting the religious minorities.
Speaking at separate rallies in front of the National Press Club, they urged the government to take immediate security measures to prevent further attacks on them. 
The Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists faction led by Manjurul Ahsan Bulbul held rally at the same venue in protest against the attacks on religious minorities.
Communist Party of Bangladesh president Mujahidul Islam Selim and general secretary Syed Abu Zafar Ahmed in a statement called on the party men to form resistance committees in each village to protect the minorities.
The Ganasaghati Andolan at a meeting in the city asked the government to meet out exemplary punishments to the attackers.
 Jamaat in a statement expressed concern over the attacks on minorities and the ongoing ‘anarchy and violence’ across the country.
Our Correspondent in Rajhahi reports: Rajshahi Journalists Association, The Hunger Project Bangladesh, Sushashoner Jonno Nagorik Sujon, better known as Sujan, and the Rajshahi University Progressive Teachers Association formed separate human chains in different places of the city, demanding safety of the minority communities and compensation for the affected families.

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