New Delhi, Sept 4: Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, seeking to reassure her country’s primarily Hindu minorities and the world community at large, said on Sunday that her government strongly supports secularism and that any attempts to disrupt communal harmony will be dealt with swiftly.
In an interview with ANI before of her travel to India, Sheikh Hasina, however, claimed that extremism was not limited to her nation and that it was being witnessed in many countries, including India. She blamed social media for the rise in extremism, saying it had become “very, very dangerous nowadays.”
“As long as we are in power, we always give importance to that and I always tell them (the minority) that you are our citizens. You should own our country. But some incidents sometimes take place but immediately we take action. It is sometimes, it happened, it’s very unwanted situation but you know very well it is not only Bangladesh, even India also sometimes minorities suffered,” she said.
There have been instances of violence and animosity directed at Bangladesh’s minority Hindu population. According to certain reports, attacks on Durga Puja pandals or places of worship have occurred. When asked about incidences of violence on the Hindu minority community, Sheikh Hasina said it was vital for countries to display magnanimity.
When asked about the role of the radical community of bloggers and others on social media, Sheikh Hasina said it is not acceptable for individuals to post things to injure each other and that her government tries to prevent such activity.
“I think that both the country should show their magnanimity and our part, you know Bangladesh is a secular country and we have many religions here. And religious harmony is here, very much. So one or two incidents when it takes place immediately… especially my party… my party people, they are very much, conscious about it and also my government. We immediately take action,” she said.
Notably, Sheikh Hasina will pay a critical bilateral visit to India on Monday. Sheikh Hasina’s four-day visit to India is considered as an opportunity to strengthen the time-tested collaboration between the two fastest developing South Asian economies. The Bangladesh Prime Minister is likely to discuss defence cooperation and regional stability with his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi.