Speakers at a national conference here on Monday stressed the need for a broad approach to violent extremism throughout the world, urging researchers, development partners, politicians, law enforcement agencies, and civil society to collaborate against the drivers of violent extremism.
The United States Embassy, the Bangladesh Police Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime Unit (CTTCU) and the United Nations jointly opened the two-day national conference on ‘Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism’ at the International Convention City, Bashundhara in the city.
Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, Prime Minister’s International Affairs Adviser Dr Gowher Rizvi, CTTCU Chief Monirul Islam, UN Resident Coordinator Mia Seppo, and US Ambassador to Bangladesh Earl Miller inaugurated the conference.
Speaker Dr Shirin said all need to work together to counter violent extremism as extremism emerged as a threat to all globally.
She said terror financing must be stopped first to defeat violent extremism and people from all walks of life need to be engaged strengthening anti-terrorism activities.
“Violent extremism is a global problem,” the Speaker said adding that one country alone cannot prevent it.
The conference, featuring representatives from the Bangladesh government, civil society, and academia, is supported by the US Embassy through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), UN Bangladesh, the UN Counter-Terrorism Centre of the UN Office of Counter Terrorism, and the UN Development Programme.
During the conference, participants will showcase their ideas and efforts to prevent and counter violent extremism and prepare a draft, ‘National CVE Strategy’, to be submitted to the government of Bangladesh.
BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Monday called upon people to put up a strong resistance against the government as the country is hit hard with the worst form of social and political corruption.
“Corruption in Bangladesh has become all-pervasive. The economy has almost got shattered due to corruption. Apart
from financial corruption, sociopolitical corruption in the country has taken a turn for the worse,” he said.
The BNP leader came up with the remarks while talking to reporters after placing wreaths at the mazar of party founder Ziaur Rahman together with the new committee members of Jatiyatabadi Samajik Sangskritik Sangstha (Jasas).
He said corruption has reached such a level that the Anti-Corruption Commission Chairman and an MP has engaged in war of words over the graft issue.
Fakhrul said the country’s economy is now at a stake due to widespread corruption, share market and bank scams and ‘plundering’ from quick rental power and mega projects.
He said the government is arresting only some small fish in the name of its drive against corruption. “No action is being taken against the big fish who grasped all powers. Not only that, the election process has been destroyed through corruption and thus the government has usurped power. I think the people of Bangladesh must put up a resistance against all-pervasive corruption.”
About Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader’s remark that BNP is making complaints to foreigners having failed to wage any movement, Fakhrul said such comments of the ruling party leaders have no meaning and importance to people.
“They (AL leaders) have no other option but to make such remarks as they’ve no scope to go to people. Also, they have no basis in the politics of Bangladesh,” he added.
The BNP leader said Awami League should go to people to restore its real position in politics.
He urged the Prime Minister to take steps for holding a fresh election under a neutral administration annulling the results of the 11th parliamentary one to establish a representative and pro-people government.
Noted Dhaka University Professor Ajoy Roy, father of slain writer and blogger Avijit Roy, passed away at Bangladesh Institute of Research and Rehabilitation in Diabetes, Endocrine and Metabolic Disorders (Birdem) Hospital in the city on Monday. He was 85.
Roy was admitted to the hospital with fever and breathing problem on November 25 and breathed his last at 12:35 pm at the Intensive Care Unit of the hospital, said Dr Ariful Haque, duty officer of the ICU.
Roy was founder and president of the Shishka Andolan Mancha (Platform For Education-Movement) and chairman of Shamriti Mancha (Platform for peace-harmony-tranquility).
He was also editor in chief of Muktanwesa magazine, a Bengali publication for promoting freethinking and secular humanism and member of advisory board of the Mukto-Mona, an internet forum of freethinkers, atheists.
In 2012, he received EkusheyPadak, the highest civilian award of Bangladesh.
Born in Dinajpur, Roy received his Bachelor's degree and master's degree from Dhaka University, and took his Doctor of Philosophy degree in physical chemistry from Leeds University of England
His only son Avijit Roy was hacked to death by machete-wielding assailants near TSC on Dhaka University campus on 26 February, 2015.
The High Court on Monday issued a rule asking the government to explain as to why directives should not be given to demolish or remove illegal structures built on Cox’s Bazar beach without certificates from the Department of Environment (DoE).
The HC bench of Justice M Enayetur Rahim and Justice Md Mostafizur Rahman issued the rule following a petition filed by Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers’ Association (Bela).
Advocate Minhajul Haque Chowdhury and Advocate Syed Ahmed Kabir stood for the petitioner while deputy attorney general AmitTalukdar represented the state.
The HC also issued a rule asking the government to explain as to why the failure of the respondents to protect the hills, hillocks and forest in Sadar, Maheshkhali, Teknaf, Ramu, Chokoria, Ukhiya and Pekua upazilas of the district should not be declared illegal.
Besides, it wanted to know why the ineffectiveness of the authorities concerned to stop pollution by business entities, encroachment of the sea beach, municipality wastes and dumping of disposable plastic products should not be declared illegal.
Twenty-two people, including the cabinet secretary, secretaries to the Forest and Environment Ministry, Civil Aviation and Tourism Ministry, Housing and Public Works Ministry, Public Administration Ministry, Water Resources Ministry were asked to respond to the rule within three months.
Earlier, Bela filed a petition seeking necessary steps to stop pollution and construction of illegal hotels and motels in seven upazilas of the district.
The Cabinet on Monday approved the draft speech of President Abdul Hamid to be delivered at the first session of the 11th Parliament in 2020.
The approval came from the cabinet meeting held with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair at the Bangladesh Secretariat.
The President will address Parliament at the commencement of the first session of 2020 calendar year as per Article 73 (2) of the Constitution, said Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam while briefing reporters after the meeting.
The speech will focus on the country's overall scenario, including macroeconomic condition, the government's measures and successes in improvement of the country's socioeconomic status, local and overseas employment, expansion of social safety net programmes and activities and programmes taken in different sectors to implement the Vision 2021, he said.
The speech will also highlight the progress in the trial process of war criminals, implementation of different programmes over ICT development for building Digital Bangladesh, successes achieved regarding foreign relations, administrative policies and strategies, development philosophy and guidelines for progress (of the country), said the Cabinet Secretary.
The last (5th) session of the 11th parliament was prorogued on November 14 last. So, the maiden session of the 2020 calendar year is likely to begin in early January as the period between the two sessions cannot exceed 60 days according to Article 72 (1) of the Constitution.
Besides, the cabinet meeting was informed about the Prime Minister’s participation as the Chief Guest in the opening ceremony of Bangladesh-India Test Match in Kolkata on November 22.