Vol. 5 Num 272 Thu. March 03, 2005  

Political leaders demand Rajshahi SP's withdrawal
JMJB operations stopped killings by outlaws, claims SP

Local leaders of different political parties and social organisations have reiterated their demand for immediate removal of Rajshahi Police Superintendent Masud Mia for allegedly helping Bangla Bhai in his efforts to leave the country.

A police report after internal investigation last month had recommended the SP's withdrawal to "save the image of the government".

Talking to this correspondent, Workers' Party Politburo member Fazle Hossain Badsha has said, "We believe the government's aim to maintain law and order in Rajshahi region will fail if officials who helped Bangla Bhai are not punished".

Rajshahi Awami League General Secretary AHM Khairuzzaman Liton said, "He (the SP) should have been withdrawn long before. It is now clear that the government's ultimate goal is to patronise religious extremists".

A Rajshahi BNP leader seeking anonymity said, "I do not know why some of our lawmakers want him (SP) in Rajshahi. The government is facing criticism because of him".

The Awami League-led 14-party alliance on February 1 submitted a memorandum to Rajshahi Deputy Commissioner demanding the SP's withdrawal.

Rajshahi Rakkha Sangram Parishad Convenor Zamat Khan has said they will launch agitation if the SP is not withdrawn immediately.

Asked why action is not taken after the report, the source said, "Top ruling party men back him.

When contacted, SP Masud Mia said, "Badsha like many other leaf leaders are patrons of outlaws.

"You saw people were being killed one after another. Why the killing stopped suddenly?" The SP gave to understand that the killings by outlaws stopped because of JMJB (Jagrata Muslim Janata Bangladesh) operations.

Asked why there is no case against Bangla Bhai, he said, "Where from case will come if there is none to complain?"

On May 23 last year, several thousand JMJB activists armed with bamboo poles and hockey sticks staged a showdown in Rajshahi city under police escort.

They held two meetings at Shaheb Bazar Zero point and Gourhanga Rail Crossing and handed over memoranda to Deputy Commissioner Aziz Hasan, Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Noor Muhammad, Police Superintendent Masud Mia Rajshahi. At the rallies, they also threatened journalists for reports on Bangla Bhai.

While receiving the memorandum, the SP had said, "We (police) hail you (JMJB) as you are helping us eliminate Sarbaharas (outlaws) from Rajshahi. We must cooperate with you in coming days so that people can live in peace."