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Bangladesh Works for Justice
Source: southasia.oneworld.net
Source Date: Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Country: Bangladesh
Created: Oct 23, 2012

Following rioting against its Buddhist people, the Bangladesh government is showing its resolve to do justice to the country’s minority.

Bangladesh Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina said that the Buddhist population at the receiving end of violence and arson end-September, would be rehabilitated in the shortest possible time. Thousands were rendered homeless as miscreants brought down and burnt homes and pagodas in Chittagong on September 29.

Sheikh Hasina was speaking to the Ministers and State Ministers after the weekly Cabinet meeting at the Cabinet division at Secretariat yesterday. The PM referring to a letter of Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, told her Cabinet colleagues that the President has assured them of sending some old Buddhist statues.

Private banks have been roped in to help the government’s rehabilitation programmes. Bangladesh remains on the edge of communal precipice as a period of Hindu festivities begin mid-October. The Prime Minister has directed lawmakers and her ministers be alert during the upcoming Hindu festival season as she feels there could be a conspiracy like the one in Ramu, Chittagong.

Bangladesh’s Interior Minister held out the assurance that the miscreants who stirred the violence will be traced and brought to book. Police had arrested a key instigator behind the attacks, Abdul Moktadir, who has since admitted to having spread Facebook images among local citizens on the night of September 29. Police are trying to ascertain whether someone had backed Moktadir in spreading the images derogatory to the Quran.

The Prime Minister, who was on an official tour to the UN returned to hold an amity rally where she blamed opposition lawmakers for the violence and warned against further damage to the country’s “social harmony”.

“It was found in the investigation that soon after a local MP left the place around midnight saying something, thousands of people joined in the mayhem and set fire to houses and temples of the Buddhist community,” she had said.

The government has promised to rebuild the Buddhist monasteries and temples and compensate the victims whose houses were destroyed in the violence. Monetary assistance has been provided from the Prime Minister's Relief Fund to the people affected by the sectarian violence.
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