Religious Extremism on the Rise In Bangladesh: Jamaat Behind Revival

shahalifarhad's picture
Submitted by safarhad [Guest] on Mon, 01/04/2013 - 9:30pm

Religious extremism is not a new phenomenon in Bangladesh. Harkat ul Jihad, Bangla Bhai's Jamaatul Mujaheedin Bangladesh (JMB), Hijbut Tahrir are names which we very clearly remember not from the distant past. It is also not new for Jamaat E Islami’s name to appear whenever one is discussing religious extremism in Bangladesh. Recently however, the nation has been witnessing a sudden upsurge in the level of extremist activities as they are reported in the media. One such news item was published today by Daily Kaaler Kontho, a Bengali daily newspaper (link given at the end of post). Because of the significance of the issues addressed in this article, I decided to translate it to English for the ease of everyone’s understanding. However, this is not a verbatim translation, but rather a summarized version in English. I have however, not given any opinions of my own.

Terror Financing in Bangladesh

Jamaat/Shibir, in conjunction with a few other banned extremist organisations, have set up a massive pool of funds for sponsoring terrorist, subversive and anti-state activities throughout Bangladesh. Already they have distributed roughly around 320 crores among root level party activists and agents. It is this fund which has been used for the last few months to create nationwide anarchy to stop the war crimes trials. Police recently arrested 3 key personnel connected to the web of conspiracy: 1) Farid Hossain (Member of Jamaat E islami Bangladesh’s International Affairs unit); 2) Dr. Mohammed Farid Uddin Khan (Jamaat’s Former District Ameer for Madaripur and member of banned terror outfit Harkat Ul Jihad); 3) Farid Uddin Masud (Commander of Harkat Ul Jihad’s combat section). In their interviews with police and other law enforcers, these men confirmed that their objective was to take down high profile targets, including political leaders. To that end, members of terror outfits like Harkat ul Jihad and Harkat ul Mujaheed, have already been keeping their potential targets under surveillance.

$1.6 million in Swiss Bank

Farid Hossain, Member of Jamaat’s International Affairs unit, was arrested last Wednesday from Dhaka’s Banasree area. Police recovered documents for several bank accounts in his name located in Switzerland, USA and Korea. 20 passports were also seized. Farid had consistently been using these accounts to distribute money on a regular basis to Jamaat/Shibir activists and external extremists. Their principal target has been the ultra-poor who can easily be manipulated with money to commit subversive or militant activities. Farid confessed that the Swiss account has a balance of $1.6 million. He told that Jamaat is proceeding in a very structured and planned way in order to free its leaders currently standing prosecution at the International Crimes Tribunal (ICT). Thousands of crores of Taka were collected for that purpose. Some foreign organisations sent these funds to particular bank accounts. These funds are currently being used to buy off or influence simple minded religious people of Bangladesh. The results of these nationwide endeavours are clear from the series of carnages Jamaat/Shibir perpetrated immediately after verdicts for Kader Molla and Sayeedee.

They have used their ultra-poor activists for these purposes. Since these people depend on Jamaat/Shibir for their basic earnings, whatever instruction or direction comes from the top, they are obligated to comply. It has been further learnt that Jamaat/Shibir has plans to mount further terror campaigns like the last ones following future verdicts. To that end huge caches of funds have already been distributed throughout Bangladesh. Large scale subversive activities are feared to take place in Jamalpur, Sherpur, and Mymensingh. Farid Hossain also confirmed that large parts of their funds are used to make payments for the legal defence of Jamaat leaders, organizing of grassroots agitation and making illicit payments to journalists, civil servants, law enforcers, politicians and other significant personnel at home and abroad.

HuJi Camps in Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT)

The other arrestees, Dr. Mohammed Farid Uddin Khan and Farid Uddin Masud were arrested from city’s Kathalbagan area. During interrogation, they revealed that they have trained hundreds of religious militants in the isolated hill tracts of Chittagong. They were asked to stand by for operations within Bangladesh at short notices. The Huji terrorists also revealed that hundreds of militants, many of them trained in Afghanistan, are spread evenly throughout the country especially in the remote CHT areas. They are stockpiling arms and explosives from Afghanistan and Pakistan. Primary funding comes from Jamaat on a monthly basis. These funds are used to buy explosives and arms. Other sources of funding include their own counterfeit money ring, which is spread throughout South Asia.

Recruitment Spree and Foreign Connections

Dr Farid has been on a nationwide Jihadi recruitment drive for quite a while now. Already he has made a big followers base around Feni, Jessore, Tongi and Gazipur. Most of these followers comprise of defectors from other fundamentalist forces such as Allahr Dal, JMB, Shibir etc. Dr Farid maintained close connections with a foreign embassy in Dhaka. It has been learnt that operatives within that embassy have on various occasions assisted these militants by providing courier services for cargo like counterfeit notes and various explosive substances to airports.

Dhaka 1st April 2013

Link for Article: []


মাহমুদ.জেনেভা's picture

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nazmul's picture

Yes it is very clear some how Jammat is being patronized by some foreign patrones in many ways and they are trying to destabilize Bangladesh's social, political, economical and above all to destroy the image of Bangali culture of decades. sorrounding countries are very actively working with Jammat, JMB, Banglabhai etc fundamental parties cheating the mentality of very simple minded people and their religious faith. Very truly may I like to say that " BNP is loosing their faith & popularity supporting to those fundamental parties. I don't know what is the interest of BNP?

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