Saturday, November 25, 2017

Hifazat-e Islam thanks PM, govt for quickly ‘rescuing’ Farhad Mazhar

  • Chittagong Bureau,
    Published: 2017-07-06 00:01:24 BdST


The Hifazat-e Islam has expressed gratitude to the prime minister and her government for 'quickly rescuing’ poet and columnist Farhad Mazhar.

Four central leaders of the Hathazari-based organisation in a statement on Wednesday also thanked the law-enforcing agencies for their quick response.

Those who signed the statement are Hifazat’s Central Committee Senior Nayeb-e-Amir Muhibullah Babunagari, Joint Secretary General Maulana Lokman Hakim, and Mufti Faizullah and Muinuddin Ruhi.

It, however, was neither signed by the organisation’s chief Shah Ahmad Shafi nor Secretary General Zunaid Babunagari.

Mazhar, who is known to be a staunch critic of the government and a rightist activist, mysteriously disappeared from home at Dhaka’s Shyamoli early on Monday.

His family claimed he had been abducted. The police later started a search and found him on a bus heading back to Dhaka from Jessore 18 hours later.

But the law-enforcers said there was no indication that Mazhar was abducted.

Mazhar, however, was hospitalised on Tuesday night hours after he was released following a court order. In the morning, he was taken to Detective Branch headquarters for questioning and then to court.

The columnist, whose disappearance has become the talk of the town, has been voicing support for radical organisation Hifazat for past few years.

The madrasa-centric Islamist organisation in the statement said ‘the prime minister’s role in saving eminent citizen Farhad Mazhar’s life was commendable and reflected the people’s wish’.

Once a member of a far leftwing party, Mazhar’s views have undergone a sea of changes in the last few decades and he now speaks in favour of radical Islamist parties.

He even went on calling the Taliban fighters national heroes in an article titled ‘Crusade, Jihad and struggle of the classes’ written in reaction to the US invasion of Afghanistan.

A decade later, he showed support for Hifazat which was against the Shahbagh-based Ganajagaran Mancha movement and received the BNP’s support.

In April 2013, before a Hifazat rally in Dhaka, Farhad Mazhar at a press briefing had urged the government to allow the followers of this organisation to hold their programme without any hindrance and provide them with food, water and places to stay.