Govt will go slow on Priya Saha: Quader

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2019-07-22 18:11:50 BdST

Awami League leader Obaidul Quader says the government is reluctant to take any hasty decision against Priya Saha who faced public outrage after her controversial remarks on the alleged persecution of Hindus in Bangladesh to US President Donald Trump.

“We’re moving on this slowly. We don’t want to use a cannon to kill a mosquito,” the ruling party’s general secretary told reporters at the Secretariat on Monday.

Quader, however, described the statement made by Saha, a beleaguered activist who works for minority rights, as “fictitious and ill-intended”.

On a question whether the government will take any action against her after she returns home, Quader said, “She herself said she would return home. And it’s not that we’ve to bring her back forcibly to the country. We didn’t find anything like that. We’re investigating it. Let’s see.”

After the public outcry prompted the government to issue statements condemning her remarks, Saha explained her most controversial claim that 37 million people of minority groups have “disappeared” from Bangladesh.

The Hindus now account for 9.7 percent of the total population, compared to 29.7 percent during the 1947 Partition, she said.

That means many people have gradually left Bangladesh, Saha said later in a YouTube video.

Saha, organising secretary of the Bangladesh Hindu Buddhist Christian Unity Council, attended a meeting at the White House in Washington on Jul 17.

After identifying herself as a Bangladeshi national, she was seen urging Trump to help the minority groups live in Bangladesh.