Children being used as “human shield”

অতিথি লেখক's picture
Submitted by guest_writer on Mon, 04/03/2013 - 5:56am

Children being used as “human shield”

S.M. Rana, Chittagong

(Translated from Kaaler Kantho, a popular Bangla Daily. Link to original article:

Bangladesh Islami Chhatra Shibir (BICS) is recruiting innocent school children for terrorist activities. They use them primarily as human shield during the protest rallies. Shahidul Islam, a 14 year old boy was leading one of these rallies and was shot and killed when it turned violent. Like Shahidul, a number of children have been killed in the recent violence across the country.

The situation is especially grim in Rajshahi and Bogra, where Jamaat and Shibir have converted thousands of unsuspecting Muslims into blind followers of their extremist views through religious manipulation. They particularly target school-going kids, since they are easier to persuade. They use the controversial writings by Abul A’la Maududi, the founder of Jamaat-e-Islami to brainwash them. After successful recruitments, these children are mainly used to lead the violent rallies. Since Police have certain restrictions on how to deal with underage protesters, they use them as shield and attack the police from behind.

“There were a lot of kids on the street that day” – said Mosad Hossain Chowdhury, Chairman of Chhodaha Union in Shatkania, where Shahidul Islam was killed.

“Kids this age should be in school learning about principles and morality. Instead, they’re tricked into leading violent rallies and creating anarchy, which puts their lives in serious danger” – said Mohammad Iltutmish, the additional police super of Chittagong.

Police arrested 17 Shibir activists last year on 3rd February from the New Mansurbad neighborhood of Chittagong city. They recovered a number of Jihadi books and strategic documents on how to recruit kids from primary and secondary schools. “They use these books to convey their extremist propaganda and recruit them as members by collecting a monthly fee. They mainly target the boys, but even girls are not being spared. They recruit the girls for the women’s wing of BICS.” – said Arefin Jewel, the additional commissioner of Chittagong Metropolitan Police.

Mashrur Hossain, ex-president of BICS Chittagong wing admitted that they used to regularly recruit kids from Grade 5 and 8. “Their parents send them to us in the hope that they will learn good Islamic morals from here. We have almost 12000 boys and 7000 girls as student members here in Chittagong” – said Mashrur.

When asked why these children are being used as human shield in violent rallies, Mashrur claimed that according to BICS constitution, members under the age of 18 are not allowed to participate in rallies and meetings. When pictures of children participating in the rallies were shown, Mashrur claimed that they don’t have any control over it and the children are doing this at their own accord after Delwar Hossain Sayeedi was given the death penalty for 1971 atrocities. “ We only tech them moral lessons, nothing more” – said Mashrur.

According to some recruitment forms obtained from archives, Mobarak Hossain Awlad, a 5th grade student of Firoj Shah koloni primary school was recruited in 2009. Mohammad Imran Hossain, an 8th grade student of Nurul Huq Chowdhury high scool was recruited on February 11, 2009. Arafat Rahman of Mirja Ahmed Ispahani High School was recruited in 2008.
Children’s Rights workers have showed grave concern regarding this matter. They said this is illegal, since anyone under the age of 18 is not allowed to participate in any organizational activity without their parents’ permission. So even if BICS has records of these children as members, its completely illegal.

“By recruiting innocent children and putting their lives at risk, BICS is showing the true color of their extremist intentions” – said advocate Rehena Kabir Ranu, president of Fight for Womens Rights.

24/08/2007 - 2:03am


এস এম মাহবুব মুর্শেদ's picture

It's very sad to see this happening. Jamaat is probably paying a lot money to the parents for sending their kid.

রাতঃস্মরণীয়'s picture

Lack of education and awareness are driving those kids to such subversion. I've observed in the countrysides that Shibir targets the school/madrasa going kids from financial poor families while most of their parents have already been brainwashed by Jamat. Also, they easily target the students living at orphanages or Lillah boarding houses. Alarming that these kids may become mercenary at some stages.

The world has already been suffering from mass uses of kids as child soldiers. Moreover, nearly half of child soldiers are girls. Poverty in one hand a major reason behind. But on the other hand education and awareness is also critical.

প্রেমিক তুমি হবা?
(আগে) চিনতে শেখো কোনটা গাঁদা, কোনটা রক্তজবা।
(আর) ঠিক করে নাও চুম্বন না দ্রোহের কথা কবা।
তুমি প্রেমিক তবেই হবা।

স্যাম's picture

jaamat-shibir can do any dirty trick anytime - they did it always - instead of islam they are actually followers of SS..... SS forces extensively used Polish civilians as human shields during Warsaw Uprising -

দিগন্ত's picture


পথের দেবতা প্রসন্ন হাসিয়া বলেন, মূর্খ বালক, পথ তো আমার শেষ হয়নি তোমাদের গ্রামের বাঁশের বনে । পথ আমার চলে গেছে সামনে, সামনে, শুধুই সামনে...।

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