Dhaka, Aug 21 (UNB) – BNP senior leader Ruhul Kabir Rizvi on Wednesday said there is a question in public mind whether Awami League had ‘involvement’ with the blueprint of the August-21 grenade attack.
“Everybody knows the fact. It (August-21 attack) was part of a deep-rooted blueprint. People have doubt whether the ruling party (AL) had involvement with it. A question has arisen in public mind about it,” he said.
Rizvi, BNP senior joint secretary general, came up with the remarks while speaking at a press conference at BNP’s Nayapaltan central office.
The nation is observing the 15th anniversary of the savage August-21 grenade attack on an Awami League rally in the city that killed at least 24 leaders and activists of the party and injured 300 others.
However, Sheikh Hasina, the then opposition leader, luckily escaped the attack unhurt but her hearing was affected badly.
Nearly 14 years after the gruesome grenade attack, a Dhaka court on October 10 last year sentenced 19 people, including the then BNP-led government’s state minister for home affairs, Lutfozzaman Babar, to death.
Tarique Rahman, the exiled eldest son of jailed BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia and the party's current acting chairman, and 18 others were also sentenced to life in prison in the case.
Rizvi claimed that the investigation into the grenade attack case was not fair and impartial. “The neutral investigation was obstructed, and we repeatedly talked about it in the past.”
He said Tarique Rahman's name was not there in the chargesheet submitted during the 1/11 government on August 22, 2007 accusing 22 people.
The BNP leader alleged that Tarique’s name was included in the supplementary chargesheet of the case when Awami League came to power.
He questioned as to why the IO of the case did not get Torque’s involvement in the grenade attack during the 1/11 regime.
“Tarique Rahman was implicated in the case with a political motive. Had there been the rule of law, justice and good governance, the real offenders would have been punished,” Rizvi observed.
Describing the August-21-grenade attack as a tragic incident, those who conspired against the then BNP government might have carried out it.
Reacting to ruling party leaders’ remarks accusing BNP for the grenade attack, Rizvi said, “Pilkhana carnage took place during Awami League’s rule. As it’s so, is Awami League responsible for the incident?”
As his attention was drawn to the Information Minister’s comment that Khaleda Zia had involvement with the August-21 incident, he said they can say anything as they are now in power, but people know the fact.