Update September 9, 2020

Dhaka 3-00 am, 19-September, 2020

Criminals involved in attack on UNO Wahida must be punished: PM

Mirajul Moin Joy

Prime Minister and Leader of the House Sheikh Hasina today told parliament that those involved in the attack on Ghoraghat Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) of Dinajpur Wahida Khanam must be punished as investigation is underway to unearth the real cause and the masterminds behind the heinous act.

“I can tell you all (lawmakers) that the culprits responsible for the attack would definitely get punishment and I’m ensuring it. Already some people were arrested to this end and investigation is underway to find out the real reason and masterminds behind it. There is no lapse in the probe and it (lapse) will not happen,” she said.

The Leader of the House came up with the statement while replying to a supplementary question from BNP lawmaker Harunur Rashid from Chapainawabganj-3 constituency during the PM’s question-answer session in the House.

Harun in his query requested the PM to form a high-powered investigation team likewise the killing of Feni’s madrasha student Nusrat to probe the attack on UNO Wahida as he doubts that the local investigators could not do it properly.

Sheikh Hasina, also the Awami League president, renewed her strong warning against criminals, saying, “I have earlier said in my eyes criminals are criminals. I’ll never consider what (political) party they belong to. I’ll not even spare if they are from my party—this is my policy and I’m moving ahead with this principle. You (lawmakers) have already realized it.”

Describing the attack on UNO Wahida as a matter of sorrow, she said some people have already been captured to this end and more arrests will be made following the investigation.

“Many have speculated it as a matter of theft. Investigation is going on in a proper manner to find out everything relating to the incident,” she continued.

The prime minister simultaneously requested the parliament members not to protect the criminals, saying, “The people who are committing crimes and protecting the criminals are equally liable.”

The Leader of the House said they have brought UNO Wahida to Dhaka by a helicopter immediately after the incident and took all possible measures to ensure her proper treatment.

UNO Wahida and her father Omar Ali were seriously injured in an attack by miscreants at her official residence on the Ghoraghat Upazila Parishad premises early Thursday.

She is now undergoing treatment at the National Institute of Neurosciences and Hospital, Dhaka.

Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) arrested the prime accused in the case Asadul Haque and his two accomplices Nabiul Islam and Santu Kumar Biswas from different upazilas in Dinajpur the next day (Friday). All of them have been put on a seven-day remand for interrogation by a Dinajpur court.

Coming down heavily on BNP lawmaker Harun as he hinted at the involvement of the Awami League men in the attack on UNO Wahida, the premier said it should not right to blame leaders and activists of her party as they have been working sincerely to reach relief and other necessary assistances to the people affected by the coronavirus, the cyclone Amphan and flood.

Many of the AL leaders and activists have died after being infected with the COVID-19, she said, adding that on the contrary, the BNP government did nothing for the people after the 1991 devastating cyclone.

Responding to Harun’s plea to the premier not back to the past, the premier also said that, “We have to choose the path of the future after taking lessons from the past.”

In reply to a supplementary from BNP MP Golam Mohammad Siraj from Bogura-6, the Leader of the House said that the government is taking prompt action whenever any incident takes place, and in the case of attacking UNO Wahida nothing otherwise will happen.

The prime minister in this regard said all the family members of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman except she and her sister Sheikh Rehana were assassinated on August 15, 1975 carnage.

And unfortunately, the killers involved in the carnage were patronized through getting indemnity she said, adding that her government has been trying to stop recurrence of this evil culture.

In this connection, she also referred to synchronised bomb attacks at 500 places across the country, and the August 21, 2004, grisly grenade attacks on an AL’s anti-terrorism rally.

In reply to a query from the treasury bench MP Abdus Shahid, Sheikh Hasina said her government has been working to provide home to every homeless person and home along with land to every landless person in line with their policy that none will remain homeless in the country during the “Mujib Borsho” marking birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahaman.

She went on saying that so far 118,213 families have been rehabilitated at 2,704 villages across the country at a cost of Tk 1,140.24 crore under the Adarsha Gram and Gucchagram projects while some 319,140 families have so far been rehabilitated under the Ashrayan Project.

Besides, work of constructing 139 five-storey buildings at Khurushkul area in Cox’s Bazar has been continuing to rehabilitate 4,409 climate refugee families while 600 families have already been rehabilitated at 20 buildings after their construction, she informed.

In line with the policy that none will remain homeless marking the “Mujib Borsho”, the premier said her government has already started the Ashrayan Project-II to ensure houses for all landless and homeless families across the country.

So far the government has collected a list of 589,750 homeless families and initiated to construct semi-pucca houses for 592,261 families at a cost Tk 1.71 lakh each, she also said.

Apart from these, lists of 293,330 landless and homeless families in all districts were collected through the DCs, she added.

The Prime Minister requested the lawmakers to provide the data of homeless and landless families if any remains out of the list, adding that the government will take necessary measures after thorough verification of those.

Replying to a query from Jatiya Party MP Fakhrul Imam on what the prime minister looks for first after getting up from sleep every morning, Sheikh Hasina said she searches for jaynamaj (prayer mat) for offering morning prayer and recite the holy Quaran and then take tea or coffee prepared by herself or by her accompanier, Sheikh Rehana or Putul (Saima Wazed Hossain Putul).

“I first look for jainamaj after getting up (from the sleep). Then recite the holy Quran. I take a cup of tea or coffee after making it on my own or the person who wakes up first (from sleep) among my younger sister or my daughter Putul,” she said

She continued that she later takes morning walks for sometime and sits beside the Ganabhaban Lake with a fishing rod to catch fish.

The Prime Minister said they behave well and show respect to even the domestic helps, car drivers and rickshaw-pullers as they have got the lesson from their family, particularly from their father.

While responding to a starred question from a treasury bench member, AKM Rahmatullah from Dhaka-11 constituency, the premier said she placed a three-point proposal to the virtual ocean dialogue as the government believes there is no substitute for cooperation and coordination among the partners to get maximum benefit of the sustainable marine resources.

She added that the organizers, World Economic Forum and Friends of Ocean Action informed Bangladesh of the matter that well-thought out and strategy based opinion (in the proposals) placed in “Virtual Ocean Dialogues” held in Swiss city of Geneva on June 3, played an important role in making it successful.

The premier said that they mainly took part in the conference at the invitation of Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden Isabella Lovin and Special Envoy of the UN secretary General Peter Thomson and Executive Director of the World Economic Forum Dominic Waughray to share experience on how to acquire huge marine resources and use those properly for the country’s overall advancement.

 

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