Photos of BNP leader Mizanur Rahman Minu, who featured in media reports as a "patron" of militants during the BNP-Jamaat government in 2001-2006, sitting on the stage – right next to two chairs dedicated to Tarique Rahman and Khaleda Zia – ahead of the party's recent Rajshahi rally has drawn condemnation on social media.
Citing media reports on how the former Rajshahi mayor Mizanur Rahman Minu donated money to the Al Qaeda-affiliated radical Islamist organization Jagrata Muslim Janata Bangladesh, Bangladesh Awami League through social media post questioned: "With the presence of Minu at Rajshahi rally, what message does BNP intend to convey to the countrymen?"
A short video shared from AL's verified Facebook page, that also contains previous reports from mainstream media outlets, shows a list of eight politicians including then ministers and lawmakers behind the rise of the military commander of JMB, notoriously known as "Bangla Bhai", who unlashed an unprecedented reign of terror in Rajshahi region back then.
During the last BNP-Jamaat government, the rise of JMB in the Rajshahi region – with direct backing from then top brass – was vividly documented in media reports.
In the name of restoring law and order, members of this now banned terrorist group were involved in looting, beating people to death, and hanging lifeless bodies from trees – a brutal tactic employed to instill fear among people, according to media reports from that time.
Between 2001 and 2006, the country witnessed an unprecedented surge in terrorism with simultaneous bombing in 63 districts and the gruesome grenade attack in 2004 on a rally attended by then opposition chief Sheikh Hasina, besides targeted killings of minorities, pro liberation writers and judges among other atrocities.