Dhaka: The radical Jamaat-e-Islami party of
Bangladesh wants its non-Muslim members to take an oath to
protect the country`s "independence and sovereignty" but has
exempted Muslims from taking such a pledge.
The Jamaat submitted its `reformed` constitution to the
Election Commission yesterday. It has been ratified by the
Majlish-e-Shura, the party`s highest policy-making forum.
The document has a provision allowing non-Muslims to be
members of the party but it makes it mandatory for them to
take a pledge to protect the country`s independence and
sovereignty, the Daily Star newspaper reported. Muslim members
are exempted from taking that oath, it said.
"I shall actively play a role in defending the
independence and sovereignty of Bangladesh," reads a section
of the oath scheduled for non-Muslim members, the report said.
In addition, a non-Muslim Jamaat member must work for
establishing the `rule of Islam` in the country, in order to
continue being a member of the party.
Both Muslim and non-Muslim members, however, must swear
to abide by the rules and decisions of the party, giving the
highest priority to implementing the decisions.
Jamaat is accused of colluding with the Pakistani Army
during the 1971 liberation war and calls have been made by
freedom fight veterans here for trying its top leaders for
alleged war crimes.