Dhaka, Tuesday, August 1, 2006
Ahmadiyyas react strongly to news report
Leaders of the Ahmadiyya community on Monday dismissed as propaganda a report that they were themselves sponsoring anti-Ahmadiyya attacks with a view to portraying Bangladesh as an extremist state.
Certain quarters are trying to portray Bangladesh as an extremist state and putting the blame on the Ahmadiyyas, they said at a press conference.
The Ahmadiyya community raises funds from its members to run its activities, they said.
The propaganda that the fund is being used to sponsor anti-Ahmadiyya elements is part of a deep-rooted conspiracy, they added.
Such an accusation is not brought against the Ahmadiyyas even in Pakistan, which is dominated by fundamentalists, they said.
The Ahmadiyya leaders referred to the lead report of a Bangla daily on July 27 and said they had sent several rejoinders against the report.
However, the daily did not respond to the rejoinders, compelling them to hold the press conference, they added.
Ahmadiyyas have been blamed for showing videos of repression on them to portray the nation as extremists and terrorists, they said.
The reality, they said, is that, in an age of global interconnectivity, any sensitive incident gets instant coverage.
Most of the people in Bangladesh have no support for, let alone involvement in, the anti-Ahmadiyya movement, Abdul Awal Khan Chowdhury, chief missionary of the community, said.
‘People here are pious but not fanatic. A few hatred-preachers’ activity tarnished the image of the nation across the globe but no action has been taken against them and the ploy to put all the responsibility on us seems to be a part of a deep conspiracy and attempt to protect those culprits,’ he said.
He said the Ahmadiyyas were not yet planning legal action against what they called was propaganda. ‘But, as a citizen of the country, every Ahmadiyya has the right to seek legal support.’
Mohammad Shahabuddin Ahmed, Kowser Ali Mollah and AK Rezaul Karim were present at the press conference.