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Latif’s removal nothing but eyewash: BNP

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Staff Reporter
Terming ‘eyewash’ the removal of Abdul Latif Siddique from the cabinet and Awami Legume presidium, BNP senior leader Gayeshwar Chandra Roy on Monday demanded that Latif be booked and tried for hurting the reli-gious sentiment of Muslims.
“Abdul Latif Siddique has been removed from the cabinet and the party as people have turned aggrieved for his derogatory remarks on religion. So, the government action is nothing but eyewash,” he said.
Addressing a program, Gayeshwar further said, “Latif Siddique can be tried under the country’s criminal law. There’ll remain no difference between Latif’s stance and Sheikh Hasina’s as long as is not arrested and put un-der trial.”
Bangladesh Democratic Council arranged the meeting at the Jatiya Press Club in memory of Language Move-ment hero Abdul Matin.
Abdul Matin, popularly known as Bhasha Matin, died on Wednesday at the age of 88.
Hours after his removal from the cabinet, Awami League Central Working Committee (ALCWC) on Sunday expelled Abdul Latif Siddique from the party presidium for hurting the religious sentiment of Muslims and act-ing against the party constitution.
At a views-exchange meeting with expatriates from Tangail in New York on September 28, Latif Siddique made disparaging remarks about hajj, one of the main pillars of Islam, and Tablig Jamaat and Prime Minister’s son Sajeeb Wazed Joy.
He had said: “During hajj, too much of manpower is wasted. Over 20 lakh people have gone to Saudi Arabia to perform hajj. They’ve no work, no production and they only cause deduction.”
Criticising Joy, he said, “Why do you often mention of Joy? Who is Joy Bhai? Joy is nobody in the government. He cannot make any decision.”
Gayeshwar, a BNP standing committee member, suspected that the government might have taken the action against Latif for making adverse remarks against the Prime Minister’s son. “Removing one from the cabinet can’t be a punishment for the crime he (Latif) has committed.”
Recalling the outstanding contributions of Bhasha Matin to the nation, the BNP leader said Matin not only fought for the mother tongue but also worked till his death for establishing a society based on rights and fair-ness.
He criticized the government for not showing due state honor to Matin. “He was not given the state honour as those now in the government failed to understand Bhasha Matin’s dignity.”