Hefazat heals wounds, remains committed

Hefazat-e-Isalm remains committed to its 13-point demand and is trying to reorganise itself by healing the wounds of the unexpected May 5 midnight operation, which left uncounted numbers of its workers killed and thousands others injured. Most leaders and workers of Islamist outfit are in the run following the filing of over 35 cases involving several lakh Hefazat men.
Madrasha students and teachers are not used to facing cases and arrest warrants. They were not prepared for vandalism in the streets and specially to sustain the armed operation of the special forces conducted on May 5 midnight.
In this backdrop, Hefazat needs time to heal the wounds and make a turn around, said one of its top leaders Maulaana Abdur Rab Yusufi to this reporter.
He said the May 12 hartal programme called to protest the ‘genocide’ was postponed considering the fact that thousands of their workers and leaders were still undergoing treatment in hospitals.
Yusufi said Hefazat Ameer Allama Shah Ahmed Shafi has a clear vision how to steer the movement. He is now exchanging views with other leaders on how to rebuild the movement and take the agitation to the street. It will take some time, he said.
“We left the streets for a short time as our injured leaders and workers are under treatment. Our chief (Ahmed Shafi) will lead the movement peacefully until the 13-point demand is met. He has cleared his stance to us that he would not stop until the demands are fulfilled,” Yusufi said.
Most senior Hefazat leaders are in hiding as law enforcers are trying to arrest them. Police detained Hefazat secretary general Maulana Zunayed Babunagari and Hefajat’s Dhaka city unit leader Maulana Mamunul Haque, who is a son of late Shaikhul Hadit the lateAllama Azizul Haque.
This is what has compelled the Hefazat leaders to take sometime to come to the street again, facing the cases and the warrants of arrest.
They are preparing to go to the court for bail. We are trying to face the cases legally, he said.
Yusufi said Hefazat men were not involved in any act of vandalism, burning shops or the holy Qur’an. These are framed up cases to destroy the movement. He also came heavily on Foreign Minister Dipu Moni for her comments in a meeting with diplomats on May 12 that Hefazat men had created violence.
(Ehsanul Haque Jasim)

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