Top Hefazat leaders meet home minister

Babunagari urges followers not to resort to violence

Staff Correspondent

21 April, 2021 12:00 AM printer

Top leaders of Hefazat-e-Islam Bangladesh have met Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal apparently in an effort to reach a ‘compromise’ with the government following the arrest of their leaders across the country.

The meeting took place at the minister’s residence in the capital on Monday night. Starting around 10:00pm, the meeting lasted for over an hour.

Hefazat Nayeb-e-Ameer Ataullah Hafejji, its Secretary General Nurul Islam Jihadi, Qwami Madrasa Education Board (Befaq) Secretary General Mahfuzul Haque, who is also the brother of arrested Hefazat leader Maulana Mamunul Haque, and Hefazat Joint Secretary General Habibullah Miaji, among others, attended the meeting.

Senior police officials were present at that time.

After coming out of the residence around 11:15pm, the Hefazat leaders declined to make any comment over the meeting.

Meeting sources said the Hefazat leaders discussed with the home minister about the cases filed against their leaders and subsequent arrests.

Wishing anonymity, a Hefazat leader said they urged the home minister not to arrest any more of their leaders and release the arrested ones.

The leaders of the organisation said they are not against the government and they had no programme or movement against it as well.

Asaduzzaman said he told the Hefazat leaders that police are not harassing any innocent individual. “Only those involved in vandalism and violence are being arrested as per the law.”

Earlier, five top Hefazat leaders, led by its secretary general, held a meeting with an intelligence agency on Monday afternoon.

Meanwhile, in the face of the police crackdown, Hefazat Ameer Junaid Babunagari released a video message on Monday, urging leaders and activists of the organisation not to engage in any kind of violence or vandalism.

In the 20-minute video, he also demanded unconditional release of all the arrested Hefazat leaders, including Mamunul Haque and Azizul Haque Islamabadi.