Bangladesh with over 140 million Muslim is the third largest Muslim country in the World. Unfortunately, the reality today is that Muslims are being treated like minorities in their own country. Even though the Muslims are the majority population in Bangladesh they are forced to live in constant fear about their identity, their belief and their practices. Muslims are constantly being labelled as terrorists and enemies of Bangladesh, whereas in reality it is the Awami League and its allies that are carrying out anti-state campaigns, implementing dictatorial rule and terrorising the people.
An example of the AL’s hatred towards Islam can be seen from the recent case of Sabuj, a fourth year student of Social Science at Rajshahi University. He was severely beaten by Bangladesh Chatra League (BCL), the student wing of AL. He was not known to be an activist of any rival student organisations of AL or BCL. But despite this he was attacked when he tried to perform his prayers. According to AL thugs, it seems, offering prayer has now become a crime. This climate of anti-Islam within a university in a Muslim country comes as no surprise, as this same university’s sociology department has banned female students from wearing the hijaab, and recruits faculty members on the condition that they would never show any religious symbols and practices such as keeping beard.
Unfortunately these are not the only such incidents. Over the last few months, there have been many reports in which female students have been detained, harassed and expelled from dormitories solely for wearing the hijaab and carrying Islamic books. In Firojpur alone, three young hijaab-wearing girls were detained and interrogated for more than a month by the law enforcement authorities despite having no allegation against them.
Many other females have been either raped or coerced to have sex with the ruling AL leaders. Those who refuse to comply are assaulted and thereafter branded as “fundamentalist” by the government activists.
In Dhaka’s famous Eden College bigots from the BCL reaped off the hijaab of many Muslim sisters whilst they were beaten and forced to run for their life. All these took place in front of hundreds of journalists and law enforcement officers. This rarely gets reported as the AL enforces censorship upon all form of newsprint and electronic media, and threatens with arrests and detention without trial to anyone who dares to expose such acts.
All these crimes are committed against innocent women and girls whose only crime is that they wish to practice their belief. It is taking place whilst the hypocritical secular forces are going around Bangladesh giving seminars and lectures about oppression of women and women’s rights. This comes as no surprise as all the secular forces are blinded by their hatred for Islam. It is now all too apparent that when it comes to Islam and Muslims there is no concept of human rights or religious freedom.
It is clear now that the AL government has joined hands with the crusading West, such as France and Belgium which has banned the wearing of the niqab, in clamping down on anything that is Islamic.
However, the AL government is not satisfied with this, now they wish to constitutionally remove any remnants of Islam from the country. Although the constitution of Bangladesh was never based on Islam, the AL is determined to remove statements such as “Absolute trust and faith in Almighty Allah” and “Islam as the State religion” from the constitution. Furthermore, they are also contemplating banning all form of politics based on Islam. All this clearly demonstrates their utter contempt for Islam.
It should be noted that the agenda to remove Islam from Bangladesh has been personally devised by Sajeeb Wazed, the son of the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Sajeeb Wazed, who resides in the USA, jointly wrote an article with C. Ciovacco titled “Stemming the Rise of Islamic Extremism in Bangladesh” and published in the Harvard International Review. In the article he argued that the Islamic elements within the army and the Islamic education (Madrasah) system are the main obstacle in realising the goal of secularising Bangladesh. He further releases his venom by saying “Koranic memorisation is counterproductive for a nation”.
To achieve the complete secularisation of Bangladesh the AL government is swiftly making necessary changes to the educational curriculum and the educational institutes. They are making changes to family laws, enforcing control on the Islamic institutions, banning religious gathering and cracking down on Islamic parties. They are using all the state machineries and institutions at its disposal such as the legal system, law enforcement bodies, think-tanks and the so-called civil societies to carry out the cultural aggression on the Muslims, and to build a negative public opinion against Islam.
The AL, despite waving the banner of democracy, does not tolerate any real opposition, nor does it like to be accounted. They banned the well known, non-violent Islamic political party, Hizb ut-Tahrir, purely because they accounted the government. Hundreds of its members are in detention without trial, including its Chief Co-ordinator, Asst. Prof. Mohiuddin Ahmed and Prof. Gulam Mowla, both from Dhaka University.
Thus, this is the reality of AL’s rule in Bangladesh. Many people thought democracy would bring about a new change in the country. In fact Bangladesh has the misfortune of an elected dictatorship with no rule of law, manipulated judicial system, extrajudicial killings and widespread poverty. All these are the fruits of the flawed democratic system in Bangladesh. This is because democracy permits corrupt and greedy politicians to come to power and rule according to their selfish desires.
It is time now that the Muslims of Bangladesh look to Islam to address the problems faced by the country; Islam is a complete way of life that provides us with all the solutions.
Thus, the Muslims of Bangladesh must unite upon Islam and struggle to replace the current oppressive AL regime with the Khilafah system. Only the Khilafah can protect Islam by implementing the Quran, and establish a proper constitution that cannot be changed based upon whims and desires of any ruling parties. The Khilafah will ensure that all citizens of the State are allowed to practice their religion. It will also ensure a truly accountable government through an independent judicial system and politics based on Islam.