Centre should ensure safety of minorities in Bangladesh: BJP



Kolkata: West Bengal BJP on Tuesday demanded that the UPA government "put pressure" on its Bangladesh counterpart to ensure the safety of minority Hindus during the ongoing unrest in that country.

"The Central government and the state government are silent on the atrocities being perpetuated on the minorities (Hindus) of Bangladesh by Islamic fundamentalists. They are not saying anything in order to guard their minority (Muslim) vote bank in this country," state party president Rahul Sinha alleged at a press conference here.

"The central government should put pressure on Bangladesh government to take steps for the safety of the minorities in that country. Both the Central and the state governments should ensure availability of food and temporary shelter for those refugees who are coming to this country because of violence there," he said.

Large-scale violence erupted in Bangladesh after a top Jamaat-e-Islami leader was sentenced to death for crimes against humanity during the 1971 Liberation War.

Sinha lauded Bangladesh government for "at least showing the zeal to take on the Islamic fundamentalists for perpetuating barbaric violence on minorities of that country."

Bangladesh government today said it would "definitely consider" the demand for a ban on fundamentalist Jamaat which has been waging violent protest across that country to halt trial of its top leaders for war crimes.

"We feel that Bangladeshi government is at least taking steps to contain the violence there. Today, BJP leader Chandan Mitra, who is among the delegates accompanying President Pranab Mukherjee to Dhaka, met Sheikh Hasina for assurance of safety of minorities in Bangladesh," Sinha added.

PTI