HR body urges PM Repeal ordinance, ensure justice for the repressed
Bangladesh Human Rights Watch (BHRW), a New York-based human rights organisation, has termed the Joint Drive Indemnity Ordinance discriminatory, anti-people and anti-constitutional, said a press release yesterday.
In a letter to Prime Minister Khaleda Zia and different ministries, the BHRW yesterday urged the government to immediately repeal the anti-democratic ordinance to ensure justice for the repressed people, brutally tortured during the drive, the press release added.
The letter also urged the government to ensure effective and independent judicial system in the country so that human rights violation could be checked.
The ordinance would degrade the country's democratic norms, values and practices and ultimately be detrimental to the country's image, the letter added.
Referring the constitutional safety nets for protecting the citizens' human rights, the letter said the constitution has lost its shape to protect the people from extra-judicial injustice, harassment and violation of human and civil rights.
President of the BHRW Dr. M. Mohsin, Secretary General Ratan Kumar Barua and four directors Sitangshu Guha, Paul Bala, Mohammad Ali Siddiqui and Fahim Reza Nur jointly signed the letter.
If the ordinance is not repealed by the government immediately, it will allow the joint drive forces a free hand in any future operation without caring for human rights, the letter mentioned.
As reported, almost all people arrested during the joint operation were subjected to inhuman physical torture resulting in about 50 deaths and injury of about 1500 people. During the operation 11,000 people were arrested so far without warrants of which only 2400 were listed criminals, the letter added.
Copies of the letter were also sent to different international organisations including the US Department of State, the British Ministry of Foreign Affairs, US Congressional Human Rights Caucus, Members of the US Congressional Caucus for Bangladesh, European Parliament; Amnesty International; UN Commission On Human Rights; National Development Institute (NDI), World Organization Against Tortures; UNESCO Human Rights Division; World Human Rights Watch and South Asian Human Rights Watch.
Meanwhile, in a statement yesterday Bangladesh Manobadhikar Samonnoy Parishad (BMSP) also condemned the ordinance and urged the government to immediately repeal it.
Bangladesh Gonotantrik Ainjibi Samity, the 11-party, Bangladesher Samyabadi Dal and Bangladesh Chhatra League also made the same demands.