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Return to mainstream: Sheikh Hasina to militants on Independence Day

President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Hasina paid floral tributes to the martyrs of 1971 Liberation War at the National Memorial in Savar at the outskirts of Dhaka.

By: PTI | Dhaka |
March 26, 2017 6:23:55 pm
Sheikh Hasina, terrorism, militants, bangladesh PM, bangladesh terrorism, bangladesh militants, bangladesh independence day, indian express news, india news Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina (File photo)

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday urged militants not to choose the wrong path of terrorism, and return to the mainstream as she greeted the people on Bangladesh’s 47th Independence and National Day amid a series of terror attacks in the country.

President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Hasina paid floral tributes to the martyrs of 1971 Liberation War at the National Memorial in Savar at the outskirts of Dhaka.

Hasina said the ongoing drive against terrorism, militancy and drug addiction would continue and that, these issues would be dealt with an iron hand. The prime minister urged those wasting their lives in suicide attacks to return to the right path and assured them of doing whatever necessary to ensure their livelihoods. “But, I will urge them (militants) not to choose the wrong path of suicide attacks as well as the path of terrorism and militancy,” she was quoted as saying The Daily Star.

While addressing a rally at the Bangabandhu National Stadium to mark the 47th Independence and National Day, she asked students to listen to the advice of their guardians and teachers and never indulge in and go to the wrong path of terrorism, militancy and drug addiction.

After her address, she took salute from the march past by the students of various schools while Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Haque was present on the occasion. “It is the day of earning self-identity of the nation, and it is the day of breaking the shackles of subjugation.

“To ensure that this achievement remains meaningful, all have to know the history of our great liberation war and retain the spirit of independence,” she said as she extended her heartiest felicitations to the people on the occasion.

The Prime Minister also called for unity to tackle any ill-motivated move by the anti-liberation forces.

“Let’s join our hands to build a non-communal, hunger- poverty free and happy, prosperous ‘Sonar Bangla’ as dreamt by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman,” Hasina said.

On March 26, 1971, the Father of the Nation called for Bangladesh’s independence from the Pakistani occupation forces after they launched ‘Operation Searchlight’, a brutal and barbaric military assault on an unsuspecting population to crush the Bengali movement for rights and justice. Bangladesh achieved its Independence on December 16, 1971, assisted by India.

The Prime Minister’s address comes at a time when elite commandos have been battling to neutralise Islamist militants holed up in a building in northeastern Sylhet city. Six people were killed and over 50 others injured in blasts claimed by the Islamic State terror group.

Bangladesh has been witnessing a spate of attacks on secular activists, foreigners and religious minorities since 2013. The country launched a massive crackdown on militants specially after the Dhaka cafe attack.

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