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People being harassed on pretext of crackdown: BNP
BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Friday alleged that law enforcers are harassing common people and opposition activists in the name of a crackdown on extremists across the country.
"In the name of conducting a combing operation in this fasting month, around 600 people have been picked up. We've seen in televisions that most of the arrestees are teenagers, common and low-income people," he said.
Speaking at an iftar party, the BNP leader further said, "We also have had information from some areas that opposition activists have also been detained."
Khelafat Majlish, one of the components of BNP-led 20-party's alliance, arranged the programme at a city hotel.
In the wake of growing incidents of target killing, the police department launched a weeklong crackdown on militants across the country beginning this morning.
Fakhrul said the drive is being conducted in a bid to suppress the opposition activists and those hold alternative views in the name of subduing extremists and secret killers.
Mentioning that the people of all religions and faiths are being attacked, he said it is now impossible to lead a healthy and safe life in the country. "People of no religion are safe now. No one is in peace as all are passing their days amid panic."
The BNP leader alleged that the government is gradually restoring one-party Baksal rule in a planned way undercover of democracy. "They're filing false cases against BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia and other party leaders and activists to perpetuate their power by eliminating opposition."
He also accused the government of trying to confuse the country's people by carrying out different false campaigns against BNP. "We believe people won't be confused by the government's evil efforts. Instead, they'll get united and put up a strong resistance against the regime."
Earlier in the morning, Fakhrul aired the apprehension that the government may suppress the opposition on the pretext of carrying out a crackdown on extremists across the country.
"This (crackdown) is their strategy with which they earlier used to suppress people's movement. We fear they'll again oppress the opposition in the name of conducting a crackdown," he told reporters after visiting BNP chairman candidate of Gaibandha's Erendabari union Azizur Rahman at National Institute of Traumatology & Orthopaedic Rehabilitation (Nitor) in the city's Aagargaon area.
Raising doubts about the motive behind the police drive, Fakhrul said, "The incidents of crossfire or so-called gunfight marked a sharp rise in the name of a combing operation as nine people have already killed within in a short time."