Vol. 5 Num 86 Sat. August 21, 2004  
Front Page

Fanatics fight with cops, attack Ahmadiyya base
Firm to lay siege to the sect's Bakshibazar complex Aug 27

Religious fanatics clashed with police and attacked an Ahmadiyya Complex at Bakshibazar from a procession yesterday demanding declaration of the sect as non-Muslim in the run-up to their planned siege to the complex on August 27.

Police used teargas and baton to disperse the bigots who vowed to go ahead with the siege on August 27 and termed the complex attack a warning to the Ahmadiyyas and the government.

Three policemen suffered injuries in the clash and the leaders of Amra Dhakabasi, the organiser of the procession, claimed at least 70 of their activists were injured, of whom 30 were admitted to different hospitals and clinics.

About 400 fanatics brought out the procession from Chawkbazar Shahi Mosjid area after Juma prayers and marched towards the complex along the western side of Chawkbazar Circular Road before police barricaded them.

The agitators threw stones and shoes to the police, triggering a few minutes of scuffle before taking to the eastern side of the Circular Road breaking the police barricade.

Chanting the slogans 'the Ahmadiyyas are non-Muslim' they paraded through Nazimuddin Road, Hosni Dalan Road and Bakshibazar Lane.

Barricaded by police in Bakshibazar Lane, the agitators threw stones to the police who replied with baton.

The fanatics then marched in three groups and one group reached in front of the Ahmadiyya Complex and attacked it with brickbats.

Police again used baton and teargas to bring the situation under control and the authorities deployed a contingent of police in front of the complex after the violence to maintain peace.

Before bringing out the procession, the fanatics staged a rally near the Shahi Mosjid in Chawkbazar where the speakers warned the government that it would have to shoulder the responsibility if any untoward incident took place on August 27.

"Either acknowledge Hazrat Mohammad (SM) as the last prophet or declare yourselves non-Muslim. Then you will be allowed to live in the country peacefully as other minorities like the Hindus, Christians and Buddhists. If you do so, we will postpone our programme," said Shamsul Haq, president of Amra Dhakabasi.

Referring to the recent press conference of the South Asian People's Union against Fundamentalism and Communalism (SAPUFC), he vowed to resist them and demanded punishment to SAPUFC President Kabir Chowdhury and others for talking in favour of Ahmadiyyas.

Shamsul claimed police attacked their peaceful procession and demanded removal of the officer-in-charge (OC) of Lalbagh Police Station for attacking innocent demonstrators.

Reacting to the attack, Tareque Mubasher, spokesman of the Ahmadiyya sect, lauded the role of police in fighting the bigots and urged the government to take firm action so that the bigots cannot reach Ahmadiyya complex on August 27.

Protesting the attack, Kabir Chowdhury said: "This attack will not be able to scare away progressive pro-Liberation forces. We stand by our programme to resist them on August 27."

The SAPUFC in a press conference on Wednesday vowed to resist the move by a group of religious fanatics to lay siege to the Ahmadiyya complex.

They also sent letters to pro-liberation political parties to join a gathering at the complex on the day to resist them.

Police use baton to disperse fanatics who attacked the Ahmadiyya Complex at Bakshibazar from a 'shroud procession' yesterday. Amra Dhakabasi staged the procession demanding declaration of the sect as non-Muslim. PHOTO: STAR