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ARTICLE : Ethnic cleansing: Bangladesh style

Posted By Ashok V Chowgule (ashokvc@giasbm01.vsnl.net.in)
Sat, 04 Jan 97 18:49:36 EST

Publication: Hindu Jagriti Kendra
Date: Dec 15, 1996.

Bangladesh, like nearly all Islamic states, practises ethnic cleansing of
non-Muslims on a large scale. There are, however, two unique features of
ethnic cleansing resorted to by Bangladesh. One, the scale of eviction of
non-Muslims is extraordinarily large - at least fifteen millions have been
evicted since 1971 (wide Circular Seven of the Hind Jagriti Kendra). Two,
Bangladesh has been able to avoid adverse International publicity. because,
as the following fifteen cases illustrate, Hindus in Bangladesh are so
terror-stricken (and a secularist Indian state is so morbidly apathetic to
the terrible fate of countless Hindus in Bangladesh) that ethnic cleansing is
largely bloodless, brought about by various ways of intimidation, threat of
force and non-homicidal assaults/torture. All the undernoted Hindu, have
been evicted from the same village, viz. Durgapur (Post office Durgapur) in
the Police Station area and district of Perozepur in Bangladesh. Fear
psychosis is so deep among Hindus that some of them leave Bangladesh even
before they themselves become victims of some sufferings, because such
sufferings have been already inflicted upon their relatives and neighbours.

As the following cases illustrate, Hindus are subjected to the same types of
atrocities after 1971. as they were during 1947-1971. There is an
all-pervasive feeling of insecurity. As far as Hindus are concerned, nothing
is safe - fishes in the ponds, paddy in the fields or valuables at home.
Hindu women can be harassed or subjected to threats of kidnapping, to be
followed by actual kidnapping, if the potential victims do not leave
Bangladesh for India. It is nearly Impossible for Hindus to sell anything at
a fair price - cattle, paddy or land. They are forced to sell their lands at
incredibly low prices. Even the plea for a fair price can provoke threats of
murder or kidnapping. Moreover, even the price that is fixed at an
unwarrantedly low level is not fully paid. False cases are started against
Hindus. Police torture follows. Neither the Police apparatus nor the
village community has any interest In coming to the rescue of beleaguered
Hindus. There is, consequently, no option before Hindus except, leaving
Bangladesh for India.


Jagadish Chandra Ray (son of late Tarini Ray), aged 45, left Bangladesh for
India In 1993. Three Muslim boys - Mintu Howladar, Farukh Ahmed and Jahar
Shaikh - were conspiring to kidnap Leela, the 17-year-old daughter of
Jagadish. Leela was then a candidate for the Secondary examination. Jagadish
got scent of this conspiracy, and sent the daughter away to a relative's
house, from where, early on the following morning, Leela fled to India. When
the abovenoted Muslims learnt of all this. they became furious and threatened
Jagadish with murder. Unable to overcome this threat, Jagadish and his family
members left for Madhyamgram in West Bengal's district of North Twenty Four
Parganas. Subsequently, they shifted elsewhere.


Gyanendranath Ray (son of late Akhil Ray), aged 50. came away from Bangladesh
to India in 1993. Muslims conspired to force Gyanendra to resort to a
distress sale of his house and lands. His house became a frequent target of
thefts and dacoities. As if these were not enough. Gyanendra was subjected
to threats of murder. The local police, though informed, remained inactive.
Muslim conspirators were eventually successful. Gyanendra sought safety by
migrating to the district of Nadia in West Bengal. Afterwards, he moved to
some other price.


Gourangalal Ray (son of Gyanendranath Ray) took a certain quantity of paddy -
five maunds - to the bazaar for sale to a Muslim stockist, who played some
tricks at the time of weighing paddy, and alleged that the quantity was five
seers less than five maunds. He also hurled abuses on Gouranga, and seized
the whole amount of paddy, refusing to pay any price. The bazaar committee
was informed. Committee members came to the Muslim stockist's shop for
inspection, arid found that Gouranga's paddy was already mixed with
pre-existing stocks of paddy. Gouranga failed to secure more than half of
the legitimate price. In about three months, at the age of 30, he fled to
Duttapukur in West Bengal. Initially, Gouranga stayed In a relative's house.
and later shifted to some other place.


Minarchandra Ray (son of Nakul Chandra Ray). was often shocked to learn of
mumerous Instances of molestation of Hindu women by Muslims throughout
Bangladesh. Although his own daughter was yet to grow up, he became so
panicky about what would happen in the foreseeable future that, in order to
safeguard his honour, he moved to India in 1993 at the age of 30.


Sunilchandra Ray (son of Kshirodebehari Ray), decided to sell three kathas of
land to a Muslim, Rahman Mian. At the time of registration of the sale deed,
however, Sunil was forced to sign away thirteen kathas of land. Sunil was
told that even the money he received for three kathas of land would be
snatched from him. if he refused to sign the deed that transferred thirteen
kathas of land to Rahman. It was futile for Sunil to try any legal remedy
against such a grossly fraudulent transaction. Rahman took, possession of
thirteen kathas of Sunil's land. With this harrowing experience, at the age
of 32, Sunil left for India in


Nripen Halder (son of Nagendranath Halder) found himself implicated in false
cases of theft and dacoity. In order to minimise harassment, Nripen had to
pay a lot of bribes to policemen and also to influential Muslim villagers.
But he could not reconcile himself to a situation In which he had to lose
honour as well as money. In 1994, at the age of 37, Nripen was compelled to
come away to the Salt Lake area in Calcutta.


Rabindranath Sinha (son of Ram Sinha) was utterly dismayed to note that every
month there took place an incident of theft and/or dacoity at his residence.
He also knew that all the thieves and dacoits were Muslims. Rabindra was
haunted by a sense of insecurity. In 1994, at the age of 31, Rabindra
migrated to India.


Sunil Biswas (son of Bani Kanta Biswas) responded to a cry of alarm raised by
a 20-year-old girl, Krishna Majumdar. Three Muslim hoodlums Halim, Sattar and
Qamrul Hasan -- were trying to molest Krishna. Sunil protested. The girl
escaped. But Sunil was threatened with death by the Muslim hoodlums who
possessed firearms. In 1994, at the age of 33, Sunil was forced to flee to
Khardaha in West Bengal.


Gedu Biswas was the younger brother of Sunil Biswas (in case eight). Gedu
was aware of how Sunil was intimidated by Muslims, and then compelled to
leave Bangladesh. Gedu became panicky that, after the departure of Sunil,
Muslim hoodlums might target him. Therefore, Gedu, too, left Bangladesh in.
1994, when he was 28 years old.


Dragged into a number of false cases of dacoity and terrorism. Samir Halder
faced a terrible time. He found it impossible to cope with police torture.
In 1994, at the age of 31, Samir moved to India.


Bidhan Halder (son of Bilas Halder) sold a cow to Naser Miari. who took
delivery of the cow on payment of half the price. After seven days when
Bidhan met Naser and asked for further payment, Naser refused to pay
anything, and even argued that he had already paid the entire price of the
cow. Bidhan then appealed to other villagers, who carried out an inquiry. But
this was of no avail. Bidhan realised that he should not prolong his
existence in a land without justice. In 1995, at the age of 28, Bidhan came
away to India.


Birendranath Dhali (son of Nagendranath Dahli) became gradually convinced
that Hindus could riot expect any fair play from influential villagers, from
the police or other Government officers. Any legitimate complaint by a Hindu
against a Muslim was decided not oil legal but oil communal grounds.
Normally, policemen and Judges would treat such a complaint with contemptuous
indifference. lit 1994, at the age of 40, Birendra moved to the Salt Lake
area in Calcutta.


Gobinda Ray (son of Guneshwar Ray) received information that Sobhan Mian and
his gang operated at night to take away fish from Gobinda's pond as also
paddy from Gobinda's land. When Gobinda approached Sobhan for air inquiry,
Sobhan riot only assaulted Gobinda but also lodged a complaint against
Gobinda to the village council. Eventually, Gobinda, the oppressed, had to
lie prostrate at the feet of the oppressor. Sobhan, and seek all apology in
settlement of the "false" complaint against Sobhan. Gobinda found it
intolerable to live with such atrocities. In 1995, at the age of 26, Gobinda
moved to India.


Swapan Dhali (son of Indrakanta Dhali) was having a political discussion with
Taher and a few other Muslim co-villagers. The discussion turned into a
heated debate, followed by a scuffle in which Muslims ganged up to beat
Swapan. Moreover, Muslims threatened to kill Swapan unless Swapan went away
from his village in three days. In 1995, at the age of 26, Swapan moved to
the Salt lake area in Calcutta.


Basanta Halder borrowed a small sum of money from Zakir, but failed to repay
it In time. Zakir exploited this failure to exert inhuman pressure upon
Basanta to sign away five kathas of his land in favour of Zakir at a nominal
price. Even this price was riot fully paid to Basanta, who was promised the
full payment. provided he transferred another lot of five kathas to Zakir.
The promise remained far from being fulfilled. Basanta lost ten kathas of
land, and received a paltry sum. His pleas for further payment provoked
Zakir to issue the threat of kidnapping Basanta's sister. The inevitable
happened. In 1995, at the age of 34, Basanta left Bangladesh for India.

The abovenoted instances of ethnic cleansing occurred in only one village of
Bangladesh. Barring a case in 1988, all the other cases took place in course
of 3 years : 1993-95. One can only imagine the scale of persistent
atrocities on Hindus in tens of thousands of villages in Bangladesh. In sharp
contrast, Muslims in India can get away with doing anything. In the city of
Calcutta, Muslims can use loudspeakers in mosques to broadcast Azaan five
times a day, disturbing Hindus at odd hours, and causing noise pollution as
also cultural confusion. They can shout long in Parliament in defence of cow
slaughter, although it is inconceivable that a non-Muslim in an Islamic
country can utter even a word in favour of pig slaughter in the legislature.
Muslims in India can block main thoroughfares by their processors at the
time of Muharram, whereas Hindus are neither allowed nor inclined to do so
during their religious festivals. In India, the Government takes over the
administration of great Hindu temples at Puri or Tirupati, but dares not
touch the Jam-e-Masjid in Delhi, even thought this mosque is widely known to
be a den of criminals. Such instances can be multiplied to demonstrate that
Muslims are virtually dictating terms to Hindus in India, the land of the
Hindus. If so, one need not be surprised at the condition of abysmal misery
in which Hindus find themselves in Bangladesh. Indeed, secularist rulers in
India have achieved a double : their policies and practices result in Hindus
being humiliated at home arid hunted abroad.

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