Junaid Babunagari

Hefazat-e-Islam Bangladesh may announce its new committee making Junaid Babunagari its amir (chief) and Nurul Islam Jihadi as secretary general again. The duo were at the same posts in the defunct committee.

The announcement is likely to be made from a press conference called On Monday in Dhaka.

Informed sources said, two draft committees—one consisting 38 members and other 58 members—have been prepared.

Hefazat leaders on Sunday said there might be tweaks in different posts before the announcement but the committee is likely to consist maximum 40 members.

Maulana Mohibullah Babunagari has been made the chief advisor of the proposed committee while Hefazat’s founding amir Shah Ahmad Shafi’s eldest son Maulana Md Yousuf is also likely to get a berth. Yousuf has been picked as assistant secretary general of the committee initially but his post can be changed at the last moment.

Mir Idris, a joint secretary general of the defunct committee, is going to be the organising secretary of the new committee. Idris confirmed Prothom Alo about announcement of the new committee today.

He said the committee would consist maximum 40 members.

No incarcerated Hefazat leaders were included in the proposed committee, sources said.

Relatives of two jailed leaders told Prothom Alo on condition of anonymity that the new committee has been formed without some jailed Hefazat leaders to avoid pressures from the government.

Religious outfit Hefazat carried out violent activities centering Indian prime minister Narendra Modi’s visit on 26 March. Hefazat leaders came under pressure after the law enforcers launched drives against them over violence. Babunagari on 26 April abruptly dissolved the central committee. Within hours, a five-men convening committee making Babunagari convener was announced.

Earlier on 26 December in 2020, Hefazat declared a 151-member committee led by Babunagari. The committee was later extended to 201-member one. No one known as close to Ahmad Shafi’s son Anas Madani was inducted in that committee.

Pro-Anas Madani group at a press conference on Wednesday said they would form a counter committee if Hefazat announces any new committee.

Moinuddin Ruhi, a former joint secretary general of Hefazat and close associate of Anas Madani, told Prothom Alo on Sunday that they are preparing to announce a counter committee.