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Survival of Islamic parties at stake

Edit Date:7/28/2010 12:00:00 AM

The clueless will finally wake up? Staff Correspondent (Daily Star) The religion-based political parties in the country are chalking out strategies for their survival as the Supreme Court verdict on the fifth amendment to the constitution paves the way for the government to ban the parties. They would come up with a complete course of action against the banning of the use of religion in politics once they receive a copy of the verdict, leaders of the parties said. Any attempt to ban Islam-based politics will be strongly opposed, the leaders said. “We disapprove of any move to ban the Islam-based political parties in an Islamic country like Bangladesh,” Islami Oikyo Jote (IOJ) Chairman Fazlul Haq Amini told The Daily Star yesterday. Any conspiracy against Islam will not be tolerated, he said. The High Court in 2005 declared the fifth amendment illegal and the Appellate Division upheld the HC ruling with some modifications early this year. Full text of the ruling was released on Tuesday. The political parties will sit together soon to discuss the issue and try to come up with a resolution, said the leaders. IOJ General Secretary Abdul Latif Nezami said the like-minded parties have already started communicating with each other to set a common strategy against such moves. Acting Secretary General of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami ATM Azharul Islam said the government is hatching a conspiracy to ban Islam-based politics in the name of restoring the 1972 constitution. An ill effort is on to create an extreme political crisis through banning the parties, he said at a press briefing at the party central office in the capital yesterday. Islami Shashantantra Andolan is observing the situation and would set their programmes after discussing with their legal experts, said Monirul Islam, information and research secretary of the party. Shafiq Uddin, secretary general of Khelafat Majlish, said it is not clear yet whether the religion-based political parties would be banned by the constitutional amendment. "We will comply with the constitution and rule of the country to keep our existence," he said.

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