The riots in neighbouring countries are most unfortunate and condemnable. It is the basic human and Islamic duty of the 90 per cent Muslims of Bangladesh to ensure full freedom, security and dignity to their 10 per cent minority brethren. Islam makes it a bounding duty of every believer to behave in such a way that the minorities do not fear any harm to their lives and beliefs from the majority.

It was the festival season in which the Hindus of Bangladesh were celebrating their religious festivals. It appears that some lumpen elements, in league with some politicians, were responsible for widespread violence and even killings of innocent people. It is welcome that the government has taken a tough stand and employed paramilitary forces to quell the riots. Such condemnable events were unknown in this Muslim majority state. It is heartening that PM Hasina visited the Hindu temples and assured the victims that toughest legal measures would be taken against the perpetrators of atrocities on the minority Hindus.

The Bangladesh Government’s seriousness in sternly dealing with communal elements is evident from the fact that more than 500 rioters have been arrested and a full-fledged investigation has been launched to bring the perpetrators to justice. The government has also assured full compensation to the helpless victims. The permanent representation of Bangladesh to the UN, Rabab Fatima has condemned the heinous attacks on the minority Hindus, and assured that her country will bring the perpetrators to justice. She further said, “It is our constitutional commitment to uphold freedom of all faiths, peace, harmony and inclusivity for all in Bangladesh.”

Let us hope that Muslim majority of our neighbouring country will never allow irresponsible groups to indulge in such anti-Islamic, anti-people acts in future, never, never again. A country would be mainly judged on the basis of treatment it gives to its minorities and downtrodden sections.

In this regard we would like to commend the attitude of Pakistan Supreme Court also, which took suo moto cognisance of demolition of a Hindu temple by some irresponsible persons from the majority Muslim community. The court imposed heavy penalties on the criminals and ordered the reconstruction of the temple and permitted its expansion also which was the bone of contention.

Let us hope that the communal elements of our country who are becoming more and more violent and indulging in hate speech, hateful propaganda, and widespread boycotts, attacks and lynchings will also be controlled by our government and the saner elements. Our media also should play its positive role.

Peace and amity should be our hallmark. Zero tolerance to violence should be adopted by the administration and law enforcing machinery. Unfortunately partisanship of administration is encouraging the anti-national elements in our country.

Our government should also give a clear message to the zealots in our country that inter-community peace would be protected at any cost. In this respect, our government should make it clear to the ruling party and its affiliates that hatemongering, falsification, twisting of facts and spread of poisonous material would not be tolerated at all. Our Prime Minister should first do some heart searching and speak out openly that spread of hate, suspicion and negative communal propaganda should not be resorted to in electioneering in the impending elections in Uttar Pradesh and other states. Countrymen are still waiting to hear such clear warnings to the evil doers in India. Our Supreme Court and High Courts also must rise to the occasion and take suo moto cognisance of the anti-Muslim, anti-Dalit and anti-poor statements and activities to wipe out the canker of communal mentality from our country. Action should be taken now and here, otherwise it would be out of control and dangerously injurious to the peace and integrity of the country. May Allah save the country and its citizens.

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