Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (Jasad) president Hasanul Huq Inu addressed the demonstration. Demanding ensuring security of the minority community and justice for the communal attacks carried out at different parts of the country, Inu said, “This is not an attack on the people of the Hindu community alone, it is an attack against the Bangalees. The attacks were carried out on the minorities because of the negligence of the administration.”
He blamed a section of the administration for the attack.
“It must be ensured that what happened during puja this year must not be repeated. The communal officials hiding in the administration have to be identified and tried for their inaction. A noncommunal political party and administration is a must to establish a noncommunal Bangladesh,” he added.
BHBUC central president Nim Chandra Bhowmik is presiding over the demonstrations.
Gano Forum leader Subrata Chowdhury also addressed the sit-ins and mass hunger strike programmes. He said, “We’re offended and aggrieved by the communal attacks across the country. The government has made a business out of the spirit of Liberation War. There is state religion in the constitution, at the same time the state is being called a secular one. This is a hoax. No state can run on hoaxes.”
Speaking at the programmes, Dhaka University Teachers’ Association general secretary Nizamul Hoque Bhuiyan said we cannot tolerate the communal attacks in a country that is imbued with the spirit of Liberation War. “Justice should be done speedily,” he said.
Dhaka University teacher and Dhaka University Alumni Association (DUAA) secretary general Ranjan Karmaker said, “The rights of the people of Hindu, Buddhist and Christian communities have to be ensured in the country. Bangabandhu’s dream of ‘Sonar Bangla’ will be tarnish if this is not done. Time and again the communal forces have hampered the forward march of the country. The attack on minority communities is a political problem and this has to be faced politically.”
Attending the demonstrations, professor of the mass communication and journalism department at Dhaka University Robayet Ferdous said, “The attack on the Hindu community was not carried out for the desecration of the Holy Quran, rather the Holy Quran was kept at the temple to carry out an attack. This incident teaches us that only protest is not enough, we must take preventive measures as well.”
Mahila Oikya Parishad president Supriya Bhattacharya said, “We demand justice for the attacks and oppression on the Hindu community around the country. We no longer want to be oppressed. People who never took to the streets have been demonstrating demanding justice since the crack of dawn. We do not want to live like second class citizens.”
Teachers’ Unity Council convener Arun Kumar said an environment of terror has been created around the country. The incident at the Cumilla puja mandap was conspiratorial. The way the incident was publicised across the country, has hurt the trust and ties among the people of Bangladesh. Nobody knows when that trust will be restored among the people, or whether it will be ever restored.”
Demanding the arrest of all the people involved with the communal attacks, Bangladesh Jatiya Hindu Mohajote (BJHM) secretary general Palash Kanti Dey said, “Justice for this incident has to be done before anything else as this is a fight for survival. We must win this fight.”
Bangladesh Puja Udjpaon Parishad, Bangladesh Adivasi Forum, Bangladesh Christian Association, BJHM, Bangladesh Buddhist Federation, Association for Land Development (ALRD), Bangladesh Matua Mahasangha, Bangladesh Jatiya Hindu Samaj Sanskar Samity, Janmashtami Udjapon Parishad, Bangladesh Bouddha Samity, Bangladesh Minority Sangram Parishad, Bangladesh Hindu League and Minority Rights Forum leaders also addressed the programmes.
Besides, Bangladesh Harijon Oikya Parishad, Jatiya Adivasi Parishad, Bangladesh Adivasi Forum and Bangladesh Robi Das Unnayon Parishad leaders and activists also joined the sit-ins and mass hunger strike.