Bangladesh orders probe into 2001 post-poll violence

May 6th, 2009 - 8:59 pm ICT by IANS  

Taliban Dhaka, May 6 (IANS) A court here Wednesday directed the Bangladesh government to constitute a commission to probe violence against religious minorities in the aftermath of general elections in 2001.
Responding to a petition by Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh (HRPB), an independent body, a high court bench asked the government to set up the commission within two months, the Star Online reported.

The commission should submit its report within six months of being formed, the bench of justice A.B.M. Khairul Haq and Mohammed Momtajuddin Ahmed said.

Hundreds of Hindus and Buddhists had crossed over to neighbouring India during the run-up and after the election that coincided with the 9/11, the terror attack in New York and the US retaliation against the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.

A government led by Begum Khaleda Zia took office that year and shared power with a group of Islamist parties. It blamed political opponents for raising a bogey about the incidents of violence to malign the government.

The subsequent period witnessed a rise in Islamist militancy and emergence of militant groups.

The Zia government denied their existence. It acted after their activities caused protests at home and an international outcry.

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