Speakers at the ‘Crossfire’ exhibition in Rajshahi said that in order to create a true democracy, extrajudicial killings must end.
“Human rights violations have continued under every government for the last 41 years. The human rights situation in Bangladesh is very disconcerting. In the midst of this, the extrajudicial killings, custodial torture, kidnapping and political persecution are sizeable obstructions to the establishment of law and order. Unless this is stopped, Bangladesh can never become a proper democracy,” said Advocate Abul Kashem, human rights activist and the former chairman of the Rajshahi Bir Society at the inauguration of the daylong ‘Crossfire’ picture exhibition held at Rajshahi’s Shonadighi. The event, which featured many of the country’s prominent human rights activists, was organized by Odhikar Rajshahi, in collaboration with Drik.
The speakers also expressed their concerns regarding the seemingly endless persecution carried out by the law enforcers. This misuse of power is used mainly as a cheap and effective method of intimidation or carrying out swift investigations. This is disallowed by not only the Constitution of Bangladesh, but also by international law. However, because of the poor judicial infrastructure and the use of the law enforcement for political agendas, it is almost impossible to prosecute the perpetrators. Another reason is the lack of a strong democratic system. The guests then made a formal request to the government for the immediate discontinuation of the atrocity that is ‘Crossfire’.
In the daylong exhibition, around 50 images of ‘Crossfire’ from across the country were displayed. People thronged to the event and praised the initiative.