Opposition MPs slam election commission, police

Inside the Jatiya Sangsad BhabanUNB

Opposition lawmakers in the Jatiya Sangsad (parliament) on Monday harshly criticised the law enforcement agencies for their engagement in various irregularities and offenses, reports news agency UNB.

They made the criticism while placing their cut motions over additional allocation of Tk 1.78 billion (178 crore) for the Public Security Division of the Home Ministry in the supplementary budget for 2021-22 financial year.

Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) lawmaker Harunur Rashid said there are allegations against police regarding extrajudicial killings, forced disappearances and human rights violations. “These allegations are not untrue,” he said.

He further said the institution that is named the election commission (EC) should be abolished. “Hand it over to the police. What is its necessity (of EC)? There is no need for the election commission until Vision 2041 (remains unimplemented).”

Police is no longer a force of the state rather it has turned into an out and out political force …. Torture in police custody has become a regular matter
Rumeen Farhana, BNP MP

Jatiya Party (JaPa) MP Shamim Haider Patwary said today it is essential to make police accountable. If they had been made accountable internally, the sanction (the US sanction) would not come on them from outside the country, he said.

“We need to have a special commission for police today and formation of an all-party special committee on human rights in this parliament in this regard,” he said.

The special committee would investigate any allegation made by the people and submit reports and make the proper persons liable, said the JP lawmaker.

“A culture of no-liability and a culture of impunity have started prevailing in the country,” said Shamim.

Another BNP lawmaker Rumeen Farhana said the people are still being harassed by police. “Police is no longer a force of the state rather it has turned into an out and out political force …. Torture in police custody has become a regular matter,” she said.

Gonoforum MP Mokabbir Khan said the trend of engagement of police members -- from constable to high officers -- in criminal activities has increased as those, who commit offenses are not brought to justice properly and they are not getting proper punishment.

“The whole police department comes under question due to their offenses. The matters should be taken care of,” he said.

In reply to their criticism, liberation war affairs minister AKM Mozammel Haque on behalf of the home minister said the police are performing their duties very efficiently under the present government.

He further said many police officers lose their jobs due to irregularities and many have faced trial and punished for their excesses.

JaPa MP Rowshan Ara Mannan, BNP MP Md Mosharof Hosen and independent MP Rezaul Karim Bablu also placed their cut motions against the additional allocation for the Public Security Division.