Belonging to multi-ethnic, multi-religious and multi pluralistic society, Bangladeshi people possess varieties of beliefs and sectarian ideologies. lingual persities and typical dialects dominate trivial lands and other parts of the country. A large number of ethnic group resides over north and north-eastern part of the of the country. Moreover, a significant number of Biharis, Pakistani heritance, live in. Therefore, the minorities in Bangladesh can be categorized under four distinct classifications that include religious minorities, ethnic minorities, linguistic minorities and other minorities. However, in the article, issues of religious minorities are analyzed in terms of bilateral orientation of the challenges what Bangladesh and its neighbors are facing right now.
The assaults on minority community largely include, berating the country's constitutional rights to practice one's own religion, vandalizing temples, desecration of the idols, land grabbing of the temple and other properties of the community. Often, the intensity of the violence escalates in the post-election scenario of in Bangladesh politics, especially what happened in 2001. Minority challenges both Bangladesh and India. Because, there can exodus of threatened minority rush to the Indian borders resulting in population burden exciting inter-state relation collapse, what Tripura and Assam faced and still struggling the challenges. Like Rohiyanga seems to be a headache for over-populated Bangladesh. Another aspects that can jeopardize the decent relationship prevailing between Bangladesh and India, are persuasion of ethnic tensions in Indian states responding the minority assaults in Bangladesh. In the state, it is alleged to be set a nexus between Buddhists pagoda violence in Chittagong in a response of ethnic Moslem violence happening in Myanmar. India immediately, it is believed, needs to be engaged with Bangladesh tackling the challenges altogether.
Torture on the minority communities takes different forms of brutality. In Bangladesh, history exemplifies political parties are main alleged in these crimes against humanity. The fragmented politics intensifies the problems to a great extent. As a prepetrator, our both ruling and opposition parties are alleged to be involved in the heinous atrocities. These assaults on minority betray the secular democracy prevailing over the country to uphold the rights for its citizens irrespective of race, religion, sex and caste. But, the recent tendency of extreme religio-political parties' up rise breeds a latent feasibility to spoil the inclusive statism of B'desh. Recently as violence escalates across the country, the opposition alliance took aggressive turns vandalizing and giving arson to their residence, properties, temples of both religious and ethnic minority. Abducting to death or infinite disappearance of the members of the minority families manipulates the suffering of the family as spraying salt to the wounded skin. This indignity psychogenic inferiority shamefully attributes them dehumanized creature-like sect in the majoritarian society. They can't even protect further losses of properties and lives as nobody or nothing backs them. So, out of politics also, they have to tackle land-grabbing against black-musclers in the majoritarian democracy. Families ejecting from their homesteads, they cannot return to their residences as further threats towards them prevails over the area by the perpetrators backed with political elites.
As the opposition vacant National Parliament Election has been held on January 5 polls, different newspapers home and abroad have reported on tremendously escalating gang attacks on minority community (also other political people). These deliberated motives include arson, destruction of the habitat, robbery of the properties etc scoring peoples' deaths and injuries. Primarily these sorts of aggression are supposed to be reasoned that they haven't voted for the oppositional alliance, formed with rightist ideological and others parties, or they have just voted for the secular ruling parties. Secular governance does not patronize any fundamentalism and its tacit violation on people's rights. So, the 'faults' of minority community as they loves peace and justice through the modern secular politics in the 21st century.
Reiterating that majoritarian democracy has been replaced politics in to a game of numbers and cynicism. Human communities consequently are supposed to be vote banks and constituencies. This dehumanizing of politics takes worst turns at the event of national parliamentary polls. The largest minority community in Bangladesh, the Hindus, is regarded as a vote bank for secular Awami League (AL) led grand alliance and consequently they have been targeting by miscreants from Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) led 18-party alliance. The autopsies for this typical violence does not limit itself to the communal factors; rather the grand accusing factors behind the scene appears to be more political and structural oriented. Hindus being a secular vote bank as Moslems considered to be that for congress in India are not even able to withdraw themselves from voting. Because the parties considering them as their vote bank losses a certain number of vote castings if they don't caste votes. They can possibly face sorts of torture or anything from their supported parties as well. So observing the dilemma analysis, parties can't make sure their security rather what they ensure are votes through intimidating their lives or reconstructing their vandalized residences. In these situations, fanatical sects may indulge them running subversive operations cocooning out of the underground existence.
The Hindu community in Bangladesh is at an extreme risk, in particular at such a tense in the country. It is shocking that they appear to be targeted simply for their religious affiliation. Bangladesh's Hindu community only makes up more or less eights percent of the gross population. But, historically they suffer indignity and injustice in silence through latent risk of violence from Moslem population what they faced during the liberation war in 19971 and recent years of post-election violence in 2001.This is not that it only snatches humanitarian rights from minority community within the country; rather it sinks the country's national image of a society of homogeneous ethnic texture and communal harmony, a traditional hallmark of the country. Throughout the decades, people of multi religious believes have been coexisting peacefully in these parts of human being.
The government should now stand by the victims, maintain constant vigil by law-enforcers as well as by local people to thwart any further attempt to attack them or cause communal disharmony.Every specific instance of vandalism against the minority community, their houses and religious places must be probed to identify the culprits and take measures to bring them to justice. At the same time, the victims need to be compensated so that they are able to rebuild their lives.The report provided detailed accounts of human rights violations in the areas of: violence against women, forced conversions, mass violence, temple destruction, socio-political ostracization, economic and political marginalization, and discriminatory laws in nine countries and one state in India.
In order to sustain democracy and religious freedom in Bangladesh, fair and neutral justice will be oriented early as Judiciary and administrative authority ensure its application across the country irrespective of religious and political affiliation. Some logistics hurdles like Vested (Enemy) Property Act should be abolished turning into immediate practice. CHT Peace Accord needs to be continued through willingness recognizing their autonomous tradition and ensuring constitutional rights. Secularism is 'no-alternative-approach' to promote democracy and related rights. Compensation needs to be taken from those who are perpetrators and given to them who are victims. The compensation must involve reconstruction of the damaged properties of their residence and temple places for worshipers.
The writer is a Research Assistant at Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies (BIPSS) and a Sub-editor at The Bangladesh Today. Email: [email protected]