Khaleda Zia wants to protect militants: Awami League

A senior Awami League leader on Monday said Bangladesh`s opposition leader Khaleda Zia was "out of her mind" to suggest that the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) should be decommissioned.

IANS| Last Updated: May 12, 2014, 22:03 PM IST

Dhaka: A senior Awami League leader on Monday said Bangladesh`s opposition leader Khaleda Zia was "out of her mind" to suggest that the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) should be decommissioned.

"People who suggest that the entire force be dissolved because of one case like Narayanganj must be out of their minds," Hasan Mahmud, Awami League publicity secretary, said during a discussion.

"There is an evil intent behind this. She (Khaleda Zia) wants RAB disbanded because they (Bangladesh Nationalist Party) foster militancy," he said.

On Sunday, BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia emerged from the home of BNP leader Sajedul Islam Sumon, allegedly kidnapped by the RAB, to tell journalists she wanted the government to decommision the elite anti-crime force, bdnews24.com reported.

The force, set up in 2004 during the BNP-led alliance government`s tenure, has come under scathing criticism after its personnel were found involved in criminal activities.

Her remarks came in the backdrop of several RAB officers` alleged involvement in the recent abduction and murder of seven people in Narayanganj.

"Army members committed many murders in Bangladesh. They even killed Ziaur Rahman. There are allegations of murder against police too. So is she going to demand the police or the army be disbanded as well" Mahmud said.

He said the elite force was playing an important role in fighting militancy.

The former minister also criticised Khaleda`s plan to visit Narayanganj.
"I hear she is going to Narayanganj tomorrow (Tuesday). They burned people to death on the streets. Now they protest the politics of murder and abduction. People laugh, and we feel embarrassed. BNP is behind the Narayanganj murders," he added.
He also alleged that Khaleda`s call for nationwide protests was nothing but a ploy to disrupt her upcoming trial on corruption charges.