At a time when the world community was praising Bangladesh for its unique communal harmony, a baseless complaint on the minority religious faiths to US President Ronald Trumph was a far-fetched conspiracy to tarnish the country’s image and was a punishable offence, politicians and observers said Saturday.
Why Priya Saha, a leader of the Hindu-Bouddha-Christain Parishad, resorted to such falsehood and without the authorization of the religious group she belonged to has raised eye brows and observers said the motive must be found and the whole group, if any, should be tried for treason.She told Trump that Bangladesh has been grabbed by Muslim fundamentalists and sought his help so that Hindu, Buddhists and Christian people do not have to flee Bangladesh, while 37 million people belonging to the minority faiths have “vanished.”
But, Rana Das Dupta, president of the minority grouping, told the media that Priya Saha was not among the three representatives sent by his organization to attend a special meet in the US. “I cannot understand how and why she went to the USA and met Trump.”
The US Ambassador in Dhaka Earl Miller rejected Saha’s claims and praised Bangladesh’s communal harmony.
Ruling Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader said that Saha must be tried for sedition.
“She (Priya) must be tried for her false and motivated statement against the country being a Bangladeshi national. Process is underway for taking action against her,” he said.
Terming the allegation of Saha about Bangladesh a ‘blatant-lie’, Quader said such statement is unacceptable. “The statement is not only reprehensible but also provocative. Her statement will inspire country’s hidden ill motivated people and radical groups,” he said.Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan on Saturday said on return home, Saha would be quizzed about why she made such a false statement. “There must be an ulterior motive behind Priya Saha’s false and concocted stories,” he said.
He also warned that if she failed to prove the allegations, the government would have no choice but to take legal action against her.
The humane attitude and generosity of Government of Bangladesh have been commended by world community especially after giving temporary shelter more than 1.1 million displaced Myanmar nationals called Rohingyas.
In a press release signed by Deputy Director (Media) External Publicity Wing, the Foreign Ministry condemned Saha’s remarks
“Bangladesh is a beacon of religions freedom and communal harmony where people of all faiths have been living in peace for ages” said foreign ministry.
Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) Commissioner Ashaduzzaman Mia said that the Home Ministry is working to bring Saha under legal process. “Priya Saha’s remarks are completely fabricated and baseless. Her statement is anti-state. It is a part of an international conspiracy.”
Priya Saha, a Bangladeshi national, participated in the Second Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom held at the US Department of State in Washington, DC from July 16 to 18. Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen also attended the meeting.
Delegates from 106 countries, including about 40 Foreign Ministers, took part in the meeting at the invitation of Mike Pompeo, the US Secretary of State.