Islamist militancy and South Asia

Posted on November 16, 2010


by Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury

Bayeezid Khan Panni aka Selim Panni, founder and kingpin of notorious Islamist militancy group Hizbut Towhid [HuT] believes in theory of hate speech and poisoning the minds of innocent people with his self-made imaginary statements and stories, which are aimed at creating tremendous hatred in the minds of Muslims against Christians and Jews. He calls upon Muslim in waging Jihad [Holy War] against Jews, Christians and the Western world, for the ‘sake of Islamic revival and establishment of HuT rule’.

Hizbut Towhid is no more only a militancy group operating inside Bangladesh. But, in past several years, it has spread its activities in a number of cities in the world. Selim Panni dreams of gripping the global power within a decade. He confidently tells his followers of such plan. Panni instructs the followers of Hizbut Towhid to target at least one Christian or Jew in their life time and ‘exterminate’. He gives special encouragements towards waging Jihad against United States, Israel and the West. It was reported in Bangladeshi media that, Panni’s children are already residing and working in the West, who too are associated with this Islamist militancy group. Bangladesh government is yet to ban extremist publications of HuT such as a book and DVD named ‘Dajjal’, which encourages Muslims in waging war against Jews and Christians.

HuT is continuing to sell this publication of open hate speech through its own website and its distribution centre of hatred materials at 31/32 P. K. Roy Road, Pustak Bhaban, Bangla Bazar, Dhaka.

The mentioned website though claimed to be owned by the publication house of this notorious group, in reality, it is the official website of HuT.

At the beginning of the page, an article is published in English titled ´The true call of Eslam´, where Bayeezid Khan Panni alias Selim Panni, the kingpin of this terror outfit wrote, “to people, who are aware to even a minimum degree of what is happening around them in this world, it does not come as any surprise what pitiable situation the population of about 1600 million or 160 crores people who claim themselves to be Moslems are in. They are being subjected to untold horror by all other peoples of this world, defeated in every aspect, insulted, humiliated and killed. Their places of worship, their mosques, are being razed to the ground or turned into offices or clubs. Their women are being violated and killed. Yet, this is the people who go by the same name of those who were once the masters of this world. All others looked upon them in awe and respect, they ruled over half of the total land mass of the then world. They were the people who established the way of life [Deen] given by Allah over all the areas they conquered; they ruled unrivaled as none was there to challenge them in any aspect for they held the highest position in terms of military might, advances in science, civilization, in areas of new discoveries, inventions, technology and economic strength. Yet, all this could do little to prevent the wrath of Allah when the time came- and centuries have passed since they collectively lost in military confrontation to European Christian nations and accepted their subjugation in their lives. During the process of these defeats, lakhs and lakhs of these Moslems were killed, under tanks, burnt and buried alive-and shot dead, their dwellings were burned down. Their females faced the worst fates, being sold to brothels across Europe and Africa. Yet, the wrath of Allah has not ceased to this date. Christian forces in different parts of Europe namely Bosnia-Herzegovina, Albania, Kosovo, Czechoslovakia, Chechnya, in Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, Eritrea-in Asia and Africa-in the Philippines, Buddhists in the Arakan, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Sing Kiang [China] – Jews in the Lebanon and Palestine, Hindus in the whole of India, especially Kashmir, are carrying on with the persecution and massacre on the Moslem peoples with relentless pursuit. There has not been a single instance, where any Moslem minority has expressed their will to live as Moslems and they have not been persecuted. They are taken into custody, subjected to inhumane torture, hung or simply left to die. All because they want to live independently as Moslems. In the history of mankind, no other nation has endured the level of humiliation and insult that has been heaped on this people. The incidents in Bosnia are such that, they are no comparison in human history; where thousands of Moslem were killed and dumped in mass graves, more than two hundred thousand Moslem women were systematically raped, impregnated and held in concentration camps to prevent them from aborting their unwanted offspring. Eventually, they gave birth to children of their Christian violators.”

Hizbut Towhid in its different publications being distributed among youths is trying to teach them that jihad or military program or armed struggle is a must to establish the rule of Islam.

Hizbut Towhid´s headquarters is situated at Dhaka´s Uttara residential area at House No. 4, road no. 18, sector no. 7. Uttara is one of the residential areas in Bangladeshi capital Dhaka, which houses mostly upper-middle class and middle class people. Bayeejid Khan Panni, claiming him to be ´Imam-Uz-Zaman´ by placing himself just behind prophets is continuing to operate this notorious group with financial assistance from various dubious sources. This extremist outfit was established in 1994 at Korotian village under Tabgain district in Bangladesh.

Bayeezid Ponni although operates HuT from his Uttara residence, there are now a number of branches of this notorious militancy group in a number of places in the Capital as well as other parts of the country. At Dhaka’s New Eskaton Road area, Selim Clinic, which is located at the ground floor of a 4-storied building is used as the ‘outlets’ of Hizbut Towhid in collecting members and fund. Meanwhile, this group has extended its activities within Barisal, Feni, Kushtia, Madaripur, Tangail, Gazipur, Meherpur, Jhenidah, Noakhali, Khulna, Chittagong and Narshingdi districts under the patronization of its active members and donors. Funds for this group are collected in the name of ‘Zakat’ [Islamic donation].

The HuT chief, who left Bangladesh after the independence and returned in the ’80s, published a book titled “This Islam is not at all Islam” in March 1996, which the government banned on May 10, 1998. He also wrote another book named ‘Dajjal’, where he said that Jews and Christians are the evils who should be eliminated by the Muslims. Besides, there are several leaflets and booklets on the HuT ideologies and objective. Followers of HT do not believe in democracy and traditional government system

With the silent rise of notorious Islamist militancy groups like HuT, there is also bad news of Islamization of Bangladesh in a number of educational institutions, which are continuing to force the female students in wearing Sharia dresses [including Hijab and Burqa]. According to information, International Islamic University [IIU] in Chittagong has categorically mentioned in its premises that, female students are not allowed inside the campus without wearing Islamic dress. It may be mentioned here that, Bangladesh Supreme court recently gave a verdict asking all educational institutions not to force the female students of wearing Islamic dress such as Hijab and burqa. Commenting on this court order, management of IIU said, they will continue their previous rules for female students in wearing Islamic dress.

Similar news of imposing Islamic dress code is coming from other parts of Bangladesh. At country’s Jhenidah district’s Kacherkul Marium Nesa Secondary School, not only Muslim females but non-Muslims, including Hindus are also forced to wear Burqa and Sharia dress. The headmaster of the school said, “wearing Burqa is compulsory for every female student of the institution”.