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15 years of BDR Massacre: Context of Security and Democracy in South Asia

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The Global Bangladeshi Alliance for Human Rights (GBAHR) organized a symposium titled “15th Anniversary of BDR Massacre: Context of Security and Democracy in South Asia” at the Whitechapel Centre in East London, UK on Sunday (February 25).

Eminent educationist Hasanat M Hossain MBE was present as the chief guest in the meeting chaired by GBAHR Joint Convener Major (retd) Zakir Hossain and moderated by Barrister Zakir Hossain. Among others, former police officer Barrister Zillur Rahman, Convener of GBAHR Journalist Shamsul Alam Liton and others participated in the discussion. Besides, former BDR Director General Major General (retd) Fazlur Rahman and Major (retd) Safayet joined via virtual medium from Bangladesh and USA respectively.

The speakers said that on April 15, 16 and 19 of 2001, Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) had clashed with the Indian Border Guard Force (BSF) at ‘Padua’ on the Sylhet border. In all these three battles, BDR soldiers of Bangladesh had won with courage. While the Commanding Officer of the Indian Border Guard Force is recruited from the Police, the Commanding Officer of the BDR is recruited from the Army on deputation. Because of which BDR was always a strong paramilitary.

The BDR killings were organized from Padua mainly with the help of the Indian intelligence agencies. Senior military and BDR officials, as well as academics and legal scholars, said that Bangladesh’s national security and democracy have been gradually disrupted since the 2008 national elections following the 1/11 turmoil. There are many challenges for peace and security in Bangladesh, India and South Asia. But there is no regional forum to discuss the issues. They said that the entire country has been made a hostage of the neighboring country by leaving the border unprotected. Pointing out that it is dangerous for both countries, the speakers said that without the help of regional and international powers, peace and security in South Asia will be far from over.

The speakers expressed deep concern over the non-completion of the BDR murder trial even after 15 years and the mysterious death of at least 50 key accused and witnesses in jail. As neither the Public Inquiry Committee nor the Military Inquiry Committee report has been released, the allegation of the involvement of many influential people in the killing has given strong grounds to suspicion in the public mind.

In the original article, Barrister Zakir Hasan said, first and foremost for Bangladesh’s security and border security, the government should immediately announce a full public inquiry and trial process for the BDR killings. The speakers called upon the people of the country to be aware that independence and sovereignty have been affected by long-term problems as Bangladesh’s judiciary, army and political parties have become the pawns of India and the unelected government. They said that despite all kinds of efforts to wipe out Imran Khan in Pakistan, due to the strong judiciary in the country, there has been an opportunity for the people to get their rights back. But in Bangladesh, every part of the state structure has been dismantled systematically. Only people can take the country back on the right path.

In the article, Major (Retd.) Zakir Hossain said that the death of so many military officers in one day did not happen even during the Second World War. The trial of this bloody incident in the history of Bangladesh Army is now the demand of time. He said, just as there is no compromise in the context of national security, there can be no compromise on this trial.

He called upon all concerned to be vocal in this regard at the national and international level.

In the speech of the chief guest, former professor of Dhaka University. Hasanat M. Hossain said, when the people of Bangladesh will get their rights back, only then the trial of this horrible murder will be completed. Condoling the martyred army officers and their families in the BDR massacre, he said, Bangladesh will never let the blood of these martyrs go in vain.

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Daily Dazzling Dawn is the first and only international and non-profitable newspaper, which is 100% ownership of professional journalists from Bangladeshi origin with 20 years of experience in global journalism. The main aim of the newspaper is promoting ethical journalism with truth, accuracy and proficiency.

Editor in Chief

Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury

Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury is the Editor of The Daily Dazzling Dawn. Previously, he has been serving in important positions in all the famous national dailies of the Bangladesh since the nineties. He has played a commendable role in journalism by participating in various events at the national and international levels. United Nations Conference, World Climate Conference, SAARC Summit are notable among them.

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