Information Minister Hasanul Haq Inu on Thursday said making the country free from extremism is now a major challenge as BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia has taken a one-way ticket of militancy.
“We must stay away from Rajakars and militants… but Khaleda Zia has taken the one-way ticket of militancy… some top political leaders have also taken the side of militants which is a big mistake,” he said.
Inu came up with the remarks while speaking as the chief guest at the inaugural session of the annual conference of the district correspondents of United News of Bangladesh (UNB) at its Cosmos Centre conference room in the city.
The minister said as long as the BNP chief remains with the militants and patronises them, he will continue to criticise her.
He said militancy and terrorism have shaken the country, pushing it towards destruction.
Inu thinks journalists can play a pivotal role in making people understand that there is a big difference between religiousness and communalism. “We have respect for religions and we hold the spirit of religiousness.But communalism is detrimental to both democracy and religions.”
Describing the Prime Minister as a leader of peace and development, he said, “Militants’ friend and arson terrorist Khaleda can in no way be compared with Sheikh Hasina.”
He branded BNP founder Ziaur Rahman as a military dictator and villain, saying he also cannot be compared with Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheik Mujibur Rahman.
State Minister for ICT Zunaid Ahmed Palak, Chief Information Commissioner Dr Golam Rahman, former Vice-Chancellor of Dhaka University Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique, Chief News Editor of Bangladesh Television Dr Syeda Tasmina Ahmed, UNB Chairman Amanullah Khan, its Editor-in-Chief Enayetullah Khan, Director Nahar Khan and Editor SAM Mahfuzur Rahman also spoke at the daylong conference.
Some 100 UNB journalists from across the country, including those who work in Dhaka, attended the daylong conference.