Communal forces, including anti-liberation Jamaat-Shibir, have become active again to destabilise the country through spreading communal riots.
As part of their deep-rooted conspiracy, these vested quarters are spreading rumours by using various social media platforms, including Facebook and YouTube, and online news portals during the ongoing Durga Puja festival of the Hindu community to fish in the troubled waters, intelligence sources said.
Their main motive is to tarnish the image of the Awami League government and disrupt the country’s ongoing development spree, the sources said.
Anti-liberation forces like Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami and its student wing Islami Chhatra Shibir, outlawed Islami parties and other vested interests have now become desperate to make the country dysfunctional through spreading propaganda using various social media platforms.
Meanwhile, police have detained 43 people for inciting attacks and vandalising several Hindu temples in Cumilla and other parts of Chattogram region.
Deputy Inspector General (Chattogram Range) of police Anwar Hossain confirmed the arrests during his visit to the puja mandap at Nanua Dighirpar in Cumilla city on Thursday.
The incident was part of a plot to fuel tensions, he said. “It’s evident that this is part of a conspiracy.”
The home minister made the remarks while talking to reporters after a meeting with senior officials of police, Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) and Rapid Action Battalion (RAB).
Amid the escalating tension over the Cumilla incident, BGB members have been deployed in 22 districts, including Cumilla, Chattogram, Narsingdi and Munshiganj, to assist the civil administration.
The BGB troops have been deployed following request made by the local administration under the instruction of the Home Ministry to ensure security during the ongoing Durga Puja celebrations across the country, said BGB Director (Operations) Lt Col Foyzur Rahman.
Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader alleged that an unholy nexus and extremist communal forces carried out attacks on Hindu houses and puja mandaps in Cumilla and other parts of the country targeting the forthcoming national election.
“A vested quarter is trying to destroy the communal harmony targeting the forthcoming national polls to be held at the end of 2023,” he said.
“Rumours are being spread through social media. Everyone has to be careful against these too,” Quader, also AL general secretary, said.
Mentioning that there is a political intention behind the incident, Information and Broadcasting Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud said a vested quarter has been involved in unleashing rumours after failing to face Sheikh Hasina politically. “They’ve been involved in misdeeds to ruin peaceful communal harmony by spreading rumours using social networking sites,” he said.
“Their intention was clear that they’re trying to create communal tension by spreading rumours on social media. It also proved that a section of people who have always been involved in carrying out such evil deeds has committed the latest incident.”
Many agencies, including police, are investigating it, he said.
The Bhola attack which erupted following a Facebook post allegedly demeaning Prophet Muhammad (SM) and sparked off huge violence was a predetermined one intended to hatch anti-government conspiracies, destabilise the country and shatter religious harmony.
During the attack, the anti-liberation religious groups, under the banner of Towhidi Muslim Janata, vandalised a Hindu temple.
In 2016, an unruly mob of hundreds of people armed with locally-made weapons demolished at least 10 temples to the ground along with vandalising hundreds of houses of the Hindu community in Nasirnagar upazila of Brahmanbaria reportedly in response to a Facebook post making satire of Masjid al-Haram, the holy site of Muslims.