5498Published on December 13, 2020
By opposing Bangabandhu’s statue, pressure-group-turned-religious-extremists Hefazat-e Islam is playing the role the Jamaat-e-Islami did during the 1971 Liberation War, Sajeeb Ahmed Wazed Joy has said.
The ICT Advisor to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was describing the achievements in the 12 years of the Awami League government’s ‘Digital Bangladesh’ initiative at a webinar on Saturday to mark the fourth Digital Bangladesh Day.
“We have been taking Bangladesh forward to transform it into a modern, developing country,” he said.
“Sadly though. I'd to like to conclude with a warning. There is a group that has raised its head in a bid to take the country backwards. They are threatening to transform Bangladesh into Afghanistan.
“What do we call them? We call them Razakar. There was the Jamaat in 1971, and now Hifazat is becoming the new Razakar,” remarked Joy.
Hifazat and other Islamic extremist groups are opposing a government plan to install a statue of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in Dhaka in celebration of his birth centenary. The Islamists say that statues are forbidden in Islam.
Scores of political and cultural groups have protested against the Islamists’ threat to tear down statues, and demanded arrest of Islamist leaders for their nasty remarks about Bangabandhu’s statue.
Amid the debate, an under-construction statue of the independence hero was defaced in Kushtia earlier in December. The police have arrested two students and two teachers of a local madrasa over the act of vandalism while the High Court has ordered the government to protect Bangabandhu’s statues.
“They dared to vandalise the statue of the father of the nation on his birth centenary. Attacking Bangabandhu’s statue means an attack on the spirit of our independence. Those who stand against Bangladesh have carried out the attack,” said Joy, grandson of the founding father.
“Will we slip back into being that old country? No, we won’t let it happen as long as the Awami League is in power. I would like to say on behalf of the youth that we must eliminate this fundamentalist force.
“We, Bangladesh Awami League, liberated the country and modernised it. We’ve made Bangladesh a developing country by confronting all the challenges. We know how to deal with the Razakar,” he added.