Inside Bangladesh

Bangladesh outranks India, Pakistan, and USA in 2023 Global Terrorism Index

Publish: 03:20 PM, 01 May, 2023


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Bangladesh has been one of the most effective nations in combating terrorism since 2016, and the country has steadily risen in the rankings each year. Bangladesh improved two notches in the most recent edition of the Global Terrorism Index, from 41 in 2022 to 43 in 2023, according to the report by Global Terrorism Index -2023 (GTI).

Bangladesh received a score of 3.827 on a scale of 0 to 10 that measures the impact of terrorism in a particular nation, where 0 indicates no impact and 10 indicates the greatest measurable impact. Such growth is remarkable for the nation, particularly considering that it has surpassed the majority of its contemporaries in the South Asian region, with India ranked thirteenth and Pakistan ranked sixth.

Bangladesh has also surpassed the United States, which currently ranks 30th among the nations most afflicted by terrorist activities. Such success for Bangladesh after several setbacks is a testament to the country’s will to fight terrorism without compromising its values.

Latest GTI report shows lower terrorism rate

Terrorist deaths decreased by 9% in 2022, the analysis found, reaching a total of 6,701. The decline in fatalities was followed by a decrease in the number of incidents, which decreased by nearly 28 percent from 5,463 in 2021 to 3,955 in 2022. Afghanistan (8.822), Burkina Faso (8.564), Somalia (8.463), Mali (8.412), Syria (8.161), Pakistan (8.160), Iraq (8.139), Nigeria (8.065), Myanmar (7.977), and Niger (7.616) rank among the top 10 countries with the highest GTI score.

South Asian region has the worst GTI!

Even though South Asia reflects the global trend of a decline in terrorism-related deaths in 2022, it has the worst average GTI score, the same as the year before. The region recorded 1,354 terrorism-related fatalities in 2022, a decrease of 30% from the previous year. Bhutan is the only country in the region with a GTI score of 0, indicating that it has not experienced a terrorist incident in the past five years. In terms of the impact of terrorism, Bhutan ranked 93rd globally, behind Bangladesh (43), Nepal (36), Sri Lanka (29), India (13), Pakistan (6), and Afghanistan (1).

India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan, three of the South Asian nations, are among the top 15 nations most likely to be affected by terrorist activities.

India:

India was 8th in the number of deaths from terrorism that went down in the last year, but it is very high on the GTI list. The country’s religious and communal diversity readily sows the seeds of terrorism. Since ages, Pakistani Jihadist gangs have been terrorizing Jammu & Kashmir. Notably, terrorism with profound Maoist roots is an additional problem in Northern India.

Pakistan:

Pakistan recorded 643 casualties from terrorist attacks in 2022, a 120% increase compared to 2021. The majority of deaths are attributable to Baluchistan Liberation Army (BLA), the terrorist organization with the quickest growth rate. In addition, three of the ten deadliest terrorist organizations were active in Pakistan last year. The developing country once had a bright future, but its ominous ties to terrorist organizations and the government’s reluctance to combat them with force have created a constant state of chaos and insecurity in the lives of its citizens.

Afghanistan:

Afghanistan continued to be the nation most afflicted by terrorism for the fourth consecutive year, despite a 75% and 58% decrease in attacks and fatalities, respectively. The nation received a total score of 8.822 on this year’s evaluation.

As mentioned, a higher rank with a lower score indicates less terrorism impact; therefore, Bangladesh has done a commendable job of regulating terrorism in the country, as it ranks 43rd, while India ranks 13th and the United States ranks 30th. Bangladesh also outranked many South Asian countries.

Bangladesh saw the second-greatest reduction in the impact of terrorism in South Asia in 2022, followed closely by Nepal, which recorded two attacks but no fatalities.

In Bangladesh, the anti-terrorism mission is based on the strong will of the government and the active participation of various branches of law enforcement. Pakistan’s current situation exemplifies how rapidly terrorism can become an impediment to a country’s development. As a result, Bangladesh spared no effort in maintaining its international reputation as a pro-peace nation. As Bangladesh has performed better than Nepal, Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan, there is no doubt that the country’s South Asian counterparts can learn from the country’s achievements.

In 2005, the Muslim militant organization called Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) carried out 459 explosions in 63 districts within 30 minutes. This horrifying event made the country realize that terrorism has arrived on its frontiers. In 2009, terrorist activities had increased even more. Bangladesh did not the infrastructure to deal with such a crisis at the time, but the Awami League government doubled down on militants with all that it had available, and it worked extremely well in combating the country’s militancy threat.

Bangladesh’s proactive counter-terrorism strategy began with the 2009 Anti-Terrorism Act (amended in 2023), 2012 Money Laundering Prevention Act (first to include terrorist fund provisions), the formation of a National Committee for Intelligence Coordination, a 17-member National Committee on Militancy Resistance and Prevention headed by the state minister for Home Affairs, and the banning of all UN-designated terrorist groups.

Government also took steps to integrate the Aliya and Quami madrasas into the secular and mainstream educational system after discovering that radical beliefs were being taught to students who would later go on to engage in terrorist acts.

The prompt and thorough response

To track down militants, a zero-tolerance policy was implemented, the Anti-Terrorism Unit (ATU) was established, and a joint clearance operations strategy was implemented by Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) and Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC). In addition, the government increased the surveillance of cyberspace and social media, where terrorists were discovered to be constructing their network.

The clearance operations resulted in the fatalities of seventy-nine individuals and the arrests of over five hundred and twenty individuals, thereby ensuring that the Holey Artisan tragedy wouldn’t be repeated in the country. Since 2016, the number of terrorist attacks in Bangladesh has decreased steadily, which can be attributed in large part to the country’s unwavering commitment to the anti-terrorism struggle.

The government’s dedicated vigilance in addressing any security-related issues has contributed to the eradication of terrorism from its roots and helped Bangladesh to steadily perform well in the global arena.


- Press Express



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Inside Bangladesh

High Commission of India celebrates International Year of Millets 2023

Publish: 03:01 PM, 21 May, 2023


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High Commissioner Pranay Verma inaugurated an exhibition on “Food Security and Importance of Millets” at the Indian Cultural Centre in Dhaka on 21 May 2023. The exhibition is being organized as part of the events to celebrate the International Year of Millets 2023.

Food Minister of Bangladesh, Sadhan Chandra Majumder was the chief guest at the occasion. Mr. Robert D. Simpson, Representative of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Bangladesh was the special guest. Renowned agricultural expert of Bangladesh, Dr. Mirza Hasannuzzaman, Professor, Department of Agronomy, Sher-e-Bangla Agriculture University, delivered the expert remarks as the guest speaker on the occasion.

In his address, High Commissioner Verma highlighted the important role of millets in ensuring food security, popularizing nutritional diet, promoting sustainable agriculture, and securing financial empowerment of farmers. He noted that India and Bangladesh have immense scope to cooperate in the exchange of knowledge, sharing of best practices, and in the research and development initiatives related to millets.

Sadhan Chandra Majumder appreciated the initiative taken by the High Commission of India in organizing the event. He also highlighted the steps being taken by Bangladesh to transform its agricultural sector and to increase the production and consumption of millets.

Agricultural cooperation is an important component of India-Bangladesh partnership. Both India and Bangladesh can lead the way in harnessing the power of millets to build a brighter and more prosperous future for our two countries.

Millets have been an integral part of our diet for centuries. In addition to a plethora of health benefits, millets are also good for the environment with lower water and input requirement. With the aim to create awareness, and to increase production and consumption of millets across the world, the United Nations, at the behest of the Government of India, declared 2023 as the International Year of Millets.



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Inside Bangladesh

Nazmus Saquib leads lavish life in USA after committing rape

Publish: 06:16 PM, 03 May, 2023


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In 2011, the incident of rape of a 5-year-old child in the Sabujbagh area of the capital caused a stir across the country. How is that little baby? Investigation finds that she lost the power to speak after that brutal incident. The speech-impaired girl is now fighting a brutal life. And, that rapist Nazmus Saquib is leading a lavish life in the USA.

The little child did not get justice even after taking legal steps. The rapist's family wanted to manage the child's father in exchange for money. But the victim's family wanted nothing but justice. They also filed a case. However, the rapist Najmus Saquib escaped the country with the power of his influential father Jalilul Azam.

According to an investigation, the child lived with her family in a shanty at 28 Mayakanan of Sabujbagh area in the capital’s Basabo. The father of the victim used to drive a CNG-run auto bike for rent. On the day, Nazmus Saquib, a drug addict, lured the small child with chocolates to take to his home at 28 Mayakanan. Then he took her to the roof and raped her several times. At one stage, Nazmus Shaquib left the child in the garage on the ground floor when excessive bleeding started. Then Bachchu Mia, the caretaker of the house, came forward after hearing the child's cry. Seeing the pathetic condition of the child, the local people gathered around the house. Later the child described the whole brutal incident.

After this incident, Najmus Sakquib's father Jalilul Azam along with the child's father first took her to Mugda Hospital. Later Mugda Hospital authorities transferred the child to Dhaka Medical College Hospital (MDCH) when her situation deteriorated. After about 28 days of treatment at DMCH, the child survived but became speech impaired. The child lost the power to speak due to rape, excessive stress and excessive blood loss, according to the medical report.

To hide the incident at that time, Nazmus Sakib's maternal uncle Abu Dayan and his father Jalilul Azam wanted to convince the girl's family by giving money to cover up the matter. But the child's father wanted justice rather than taking money. The victim’s father filed a rape case against rapist Saquib with Sabujbagh police station, ignoring the bloodshot eyes of Sakib's influential father and uncle.

Nazmus Saquib was on the run for some time after the case. At one stage, he left the country and is now leading a lavish life in the United States of America (USA). Sitting there, the alleged rapist is spreading various lies and rumours against esteemed personalities of Bangladesh through his so-called IP TV. He introduces himself as the editor of Nagorik TV.

It was found that the house where the child's family used to live is no longer there. The family left the area three years after the rape incident as they could not bear the stigma of rape.

Mobashwer Hossain, a local resident said, ‘The child's family eventually left the area due to public shame. Because, everyone knows the child was the rape victim of Najmus Sakib.’

The family lives in a tin shed house of Amir Uddin in the lane behind the Rampura TV building. The family with two daughters and a son survives in a two-room house. The father of the raped child did not want to talk at first after the reporter was identified as a journalist but later started crying, according to the investigation.

Pointing to the girl sitting in the next room, he said, "The rapist Nazmus Sakib has robbed happiness of my family.” "My healthy daughter could not bear the stress of the incident and lost the power to speak. She can't speak after that incident. After a month of treatment, she survived. Seeing such suffering of my daughter, my heart breaks. Najmus Saquib has ended my daughter's life,' he added with an angry voice.

Incidentally, Nazmus Saquib, who is used to perverted sexual behaviour, also raped his cousin Kazi Rubaiya. After that, when Rubaiya became pregnant, Nazmus Sakib married her under family pressure. Apart from this, several allegations of sexual abuse against Najmus Saquib in the area including his grandmother. Khilgaon, Sabujbagh and Motijheel police stations have multiple cases and general diaries also. Nazmus Saquib and his gang also gang-raped the wife of Rezaul Karim of Daudkandi, Comilla, a tenant of Nazmus Saquib's Basabor house. The husband and wife left the area after the incident in 2010. Fearing public shame, they filed no cases against the serial rapist. They left home silently at that time. The victim’s husband Rezaul now lives in the Pirer Bagh area of Mirpur.

He said, 'Nazmus Saquib is settled in the USA and runs so called TV shows on YouTube. I don't want to remember that day anymore. My wife tries to commit suicide when she remembers her sexual abuse. We are somehow living with the pain the crime.'



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Inside Bangladesh

Bangladesh issues order allowing use of Chattogram and Mongla ports for transshipment of goods from India

Publish: 07:03 PM, 26 Apr, 2023


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Bangladesh has formally issued the ‘Permanent Transit Order’ (PTO) allowing movement of goods from India through its territory using the Mongla and Chattogram ports.

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) issued the order on Monday. With the signing of the PTO,  the deck has been cleared to start commercial operation of transit and transshipment from northeastern states to other parts of India using these two ports. It will drastically reduce the cost and time of transportation of goods between northeastern states and other parts of India. 

The PTO mentions that operators availing of the transshipment and transit facility will be required to obtain a license from Bangladesh Customs valid for 5 years. Goods prohibited by Bangladesh will not be allowed to be transported and the transported goods can’t be kept at Bangladesh ports for more than 7 days. It also specifies the rates for processing the document, the transshipment fee and other administrative and commercial fees. 

The order says that the transit and transshipment of goods will be carried out as per the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) signed between the two countries to operationalize the Agreement during the visit of Prime Minister of Bangladesh to India in 2019.  The signing of the SOP was a follow-up of the Agreement on the use of Chattogram and Mongla Ports (ACMP) signed in 2018.

Earlier, the trial run for the transit and transshipment was started in July/August  2020 and the fourth and final trial run was completed in October last year with the trial run of cargo arriving from Meghalaya via the Dawki-Tamabil-Chattogram route to Kolkata. 

Transit of goods is approved over eight routes under the agreement. Goods can be transported from Chattogram or Mongla port to Agartala via Akhaura, Dawki via Tamabil, Sutarkandi via Sheloa and Srimantapur via Bibir Bazar and vice versa on all four routes. 

The transshipment will drastically reduce the cost and time of shipment which will enhance trade benefiting both countries.


Bangladesh   Chattogram   Mongla   port   transshipment   India  


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Inside Bangladesh

Bangladesh jumps down 2 notches in Global Terrorism Index

Publish: 01:17 PM, 19 Apr, 2023


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Bangladesh was the second most improved country in terms of terrorism impact in South Asia as it has jumped down two notches to the 43rd rank among 163 countries, according to the latest edition of the Global Terrorism Index (GTI).

Bangladesh received a score of 3.827 on the GTI index. The calculation of the score takes into account the deaths, incidents, hostages, and injuries caused by terrorism, weighted over a five-year period, reports BSS.  

The GTI scores each country on a scale from 0 to 10, where 0 represents no impact on terrorism and 10 represents the highest measurable impact of terrorism. A higher rank with a lower score indicates a lower impact on terrorism. Afghanistan was on top of the list as the country with the highest impact of terrorism as it received a score of 8.822.

The GTI report is produced by the Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP) using data from Terrorism Tracker and other sources. Terrorism Tracker provides event records on terrorist attacks since January 1, 2007. 

Among the South Asian countries, Pakistan received a score of 8.16, India 7.173 while Nepal received a score of 4.134.

"Bangladesh was the second most improved country in regards to the impact of terrorism, followed closely by Nepal, with both countries recording two attacks and no deaths in 2022," said the report.

The South Asia region is home to two of the ten countries with the worst GTI scores; Afghanistan and Pakistan. Of the seven countries in the region, only Bhutan has a GTI score of zero, meaning that is has not recorded a terrorist attack in the past five years.

Although Afghanistan improved in 2022, it remains the most terrorism-impacted country in 2022. Afghanistan recorded a 58 per cent decline in deaths due to terrorism, from 1,499 to 633. 

Attacks mirrored this trend, falling by 75 per cent to 225 attacks in 2022. This significant decline in attacks and deaths was driven by the Taliban reclaiming control over Afghanistan, following the fall of Kabul in August 2021. 

Pakistan remained the second most impacted country in the region in 2022. When compared with the previous year, Pakistan saw the number of attacks increase by 45 per cent to 298 attacks. The number of deaths mirrored this trend with Pakistan recording 643 deaths in 2022, an increase of 351 deaths. 

The year of 2022 saw Pakistan overtake Afghanistan as the country with the most terrorist attacks and deaths in South Asia, a position held by the latter since 2017.



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Inside Bangladesh

Mother, daughter among 4 crushed under train in Tangail

Publish: 12:53 PM, 19 Apr, 2023


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Four women, including a mother and her daughter, were tragically killed when they were crushed under a train in Tangail early on Wednesday.

The incident occurred around 5:30am in Mirhamjani area at Salla union in Kalihati upazila.

The deceased victims were identified as Basanti, Arati Rani Das, Shanti Rani, and her daughter Shilpi Rani. They were residents of Nikrail Das Para area in Bhuapur upazila of the district.

Rezaul Islam, the Booking Master of Bangabandhu Bridge East Rail Station, confirmed the incident.

According to relatives of the victims, they were on their way to Salla to collect Jakat clothes when they were hit by the Dhaka-bound Ekata Express train while walking on the railway track, resulting in their untimely death.

Nazmul Hasan, Sub Inspector of Bangabandhu Bridge East Police Station, stated that the women were walking on the railway track early in the morning when they were fatally struck by the Ekata Express train.



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