BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir has accused the government of lying about the report given by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, during her recent visit to Bangladesh.
While addressing a human chain in front of BNP's central office in Dhaka's Naya Paltan on Tuesday, the BNP leader said the government must conduct an impartial investigation into incidents of forced disappearances under the United Nations.
"Otherwise, government high-ups will be brought to book for human rights violations," he commented.
Hundreds of family members of missing BNP leaders and activists participated in the programme marking the International Day for the Victims of Enforced Disappearance.
"The head of the UN Human Rights Commission came a few days ago and told government ministers that human rights are being violated in Bangladesh and cases of disappearances are happening. An independent commission is needed for an impartial investigation," Fakhrul said.
"She also said it is the government's responsibility to look into whether any of the army who work in UN peacekeeping missions are involved in human rights violations," he said, adding that these hints and words are not trivial.
The UN high commissioner for human rights clearly stated in her press conference that Bangladesh is violating human rights, while our government is claiming that she said nothing of the sort, the BNP leader said, adding that the government is running the state by intimidation and murder.
Addressing the human chain, BNP Standing Committee Member Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury said, "Those involved in the murders and incidents of forced disappearance have been identified in the country, as well as abroad. This is why sanctions have been imposed on some RAB officials of Bangladesh. They will be brought to justice no matter where they go to hide."
BNP Senior Joint Secretary General, Ruhul Kabir Rizvi, and other senior leaders of the party also spoke at the event.
Khulna BNP's programme faces police obstruction
BNP's human chain programme, marking the International Day for the Victims of Enforced Disappearance, in front of the party office on KD Ghosh Road in Khulna city on Tuesday morning, faced police obstruction.
When leaders and activists started to gather in front of the party office, police dispersed them.
At one point amid police obstruction, BNP's Khulna metropolitan unit leader Shafiqul Alam Tuhin started delivering a speech as hundreds of activists formed a human chain on the road.
Convener of Khulna metropolitan unit BNP, Shafiqul Alam Mona, strongly condemned the behaviour of the police in his speech. "Don't be used as a survival tool of the government," he told policemen.
"The tenure of this government is approaching its end. Numerous political leaders and activists have gone missing. Many young lives have been lost. In protest, we wanted to carry out a peaceful human chain but the public-funded police have barred us," he said.