BNP on Monday demanded an immediate inquiry through a high-level expert team to find out whether the recent explosion of ACs at a mosque in Narayanganj was an act of sabotage.
"The nation doesn’t know whether the incident (in Narayanganj) happened just for electricity, gas or AC problems or it was a deliberate act of sabotage,” said BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.
He said, "We think there’s an urgent need for a high-level expert committee to look into the matter. It needs to be properly investigated to identify those responsible for the incident and mete out punishment to them.”
Fakhrul made the demand at a press conference at BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office.
Some 40 people suffered burn injuries as all the air conditioners of Baitus Salam Mosque exploded during Esha prayers at Pashchim Talla in Fatullah, Narayanganj on Friday night. At least 26 of them succumbed to their injuries.
Fakhrul said different government agencies are mysteriously making contradictory remarks about the causes of the explosions. “The fire brigade, the power and gas authorities are making different and conflicting statements about the incident.”
He alleged that 26 people died while the rest are fighting for life with serious burn injuries as the government did not take the incident seriously and ensure prompt treatment for them.
The BNP leader said the government should now focus on unearthing the real reasons behind the explosion and its nature instead of thinking of whether the mosque was built legally or not.
He also demanded the government provide each family of the victims who died and suffered injuries from the explosion with adequate compensation.
About the attack on Ghoraghat Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Wahida Khanam, Fakhrul said it has exposed a situation of lawlessness in the country.
He came down hard on the elite force Rab for saying the attackers entered the UNO’s home with an ‘intent to steal valuables. “They could make such a remark at a press conference as they have no accountability.”
The BNP leader said the UNO came under attack as she obstructed the ruling party leaders from ‘grabbing’ a government land. “There’s also an allegation that the ruling party leaders were released after they had been arrested in connection with the attack. It’s an ominous sign.”
He said a fair investigation with the neutral experts should be launched to expose the real scenario and identify the attackers and bring them to justice.
Turning to the issue of Major retired Sinha murder, Fakhrul said it is an extremely beep-rooted incident which has brought extrajudicial killings to the spotlight.
He alleged that the government is now trying to ‘hush up’ the Sinha murder by establishing it as an isolated incident. “It’s in no way an isolated incident. As per the media reports, about 200 people had been killed in Cox's Bazar and all those were extrajudicial killings.”
Also read: N’ganj mosque blast: Death toll climbs to 27
The BNP leader urged the government to stop “extrajudicial” killings and put those involved in such incidents on trial through proper investigation.
Fakhrul alleged that the government has reduced coronavirus tests across the country to hide the real situation. “They stopped tests in different districts. The daily briefing has also been stopped as they’ve got tired of telling lies. They’re now only issuing a press release online. What’s the use of hiding information about infections? Covid-19 has spread badly due to the failure and indifference of the government.”
The BNP leader said the country’s people should wake up to overcome the current situation and establish a democratic and accountable government.
He said though their party stayed away from the race of the by-polls to Bogura, Jessore due to coronavirus, they have decided to join the upcoming upazila, UP and by-polls in the days to come.
Also read: Case filed over Narayanganj mosque blast