The nation recalled today with heavy hearts the cross-country series bombings on August 17, 2005 with a renewed call for wiping out militancy from the country, agencies report.
On this day, the banned Islamic outfit Jamaatul Mujahiddeen Bangladesh (JMB) carried out the synchronized attacks at about 500 points in 63 districts except Munshiganj, in which two people were killed and 50 others suffered splinter injuries.
“After the attacks, a total of 161 cases were lodged across the country accusing 660 members of the JMB. Of them, 103 cases have already been disposed of while 58 cases are under trial,” Media Wing Director of RAB Commander Mufti Mahmud told BSS yesterday. Courts awarded death sentences to 15 JMB men, life term to 118, different other terms to 116 others and acquitted 118 others of the charges, sources said.
In the latest verdict On August 10 last, a Dhaka court sentenced 17 JMB men to 10 years imprisonment in an explosive case in connection with exploding bombs at nine spots of Gazipur district. “JMB activities have been brought almost under control as the first, second and third ranking leaders of the organization have already been captured,” Mahmud said.
“Still, they are trying to regroup under the banner of different organizations, but they have no strength to carry out subversive acts and of course anti-militant cells as each of the battalions of RAB are active enough to track them out,” the RAB officer assured. The organizational activities of the JMB suffered a setback following the arrest of its chief Shaikh Abdur Rahman, his- second-in-command Siddiqul Islam Bangla Bhai, military commander Ataur Rahman Sunny, think-tank Abdul Awal, Khaled Saifullah and Salahuddin and execution of their death sentences on March 30 in 2007 in the case of killings of two judges in Jhalokathi district.
To mark the day, Dhaka City Awami League (AL) used to observe the day as “anti-terrorism and anti- militancy day.”