POST TIME: 4 November, 2019 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 4 November, 2019 01:54:10 AM
Ban on militant outfit ‘Allahar Dal’ soon
Those spread rumours through social media identified, says Home Minister Asaduzzaman

Ban on militant outfit ‘Allahar Dal’ soon

The government is soon going to ban the ‘Allahar Dal’ outfit as part of its move to curb militancy in the country, Home minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal said yesterday. “Members of Allahar Dal were conducting their activities by distributing leaflets. That's why we are going to black-list it,” the minister told reporters. He was speaking at a meeting with Bangladesh Secretariat Reporter’s Forum (BSRF) in the Secretariat. “Our government has zero tolerance against terrorism and militancy,” the minister added. According to intelligence agencies, the ‘Allahar Dal’ outfit is trying to regroup in the country and amassing money in various bank accounts maintained under fake names to carry out subversive activities.

The Islamist outfit is spreading propaganda and false interpretations of Islam to lure the general public under its banner, said sources with Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) and police. RAB arrested 8 members of the outfit from Dakkhin Khan and Hatirjheel areas of the capital, including the outfit’s acting Ameer Ibrahim Ahmed Hero in drives conducted in August. The arrestees provided information about plans to carryout subversive activities, said RAB.

According to sources, the outfit ‘Allahar Dal’ was formed under the leadership of militant Matin Mehedi alias Mominul Islam alias Matin Mahbub alias Mehedi Hasan in 1995. Matin had also worked as chief security officer at the National Parliament House, said RAB.

The outfit joined with another notorious outfit Jamaat’ul Mujaheedin Bangladesh (JMB) in 2004. After the government crackdown on JMB following series bomb blasts across the country in 2005, the outfit left its JMB affiliation and tried to regroup independently.

‘Allahar Dal’ chief Matin Mehedi was arrested in 2005 by RAB and he is currently in Tangail jail serving a life imprisonment sentence. But his supporters are covertly running activities of the outfit and trying to gain strength, said sources.

The organization has a detailed structure reaching up to the village level with chiefs of divisions holding the title of Nayak while

various central leaders hold the titles of Odhinayok (commander), Upa-Odhinayok (deputy commander) and Tara Taroka (star actor) at the highest level, said RAB. The outfit attempts to recruit retired and discharged members of various forces as they already have arms training. They made a priority to recruit discharged BGB members, said sources.

‘Allahar Dal’ member told law enforcers that they believe their chief Matin Mehedi could be a special messenger from Allah. The outfit does not believe in the constitution of Bangladesh or democracy, said intelligence sources. Earlier, the government had banned seven Islamic groups for “being threat to public order” by carrying out militant activities in the name of establishing the rule of Allah.

The banned groups are Ansar al-Islam, Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), Jagrata Muslim Janata Bangladesh (JMJB), Harkat-ul-Jehad al-Islami Bangladesh (HUJI-B), Hizb ut-Tahrir and Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT).

On March 5, 2017, the home ministry’s Public Security Division had banned Ansar al-Islam by issuing a notification.

“The activities of Ansar al-Islam threatens peace and stability in Bangladesh. All activities of this group are banned because they constitute a threat to public order,” the notification said.

JMB and three other organisations were banned in 2005. Top JMB leader Shaykh Abdur Rahman alias Bangla Bhai was hanged for killing judges at the time. Hizb ut-Tahrir was banned in 2009 for preaching extremist views. With the law enforcers cracking down hard on militancy, no significant activities of the radical organisations were seen until the murder of blogger Ahmed Rajib Haider in 2013.

The blogger’s murder had exposed Ansarullah’s existence and the outfit’s chief, Mufti Jasimuddin Rahmani, was jailed for the crime. Besides, two of his followers were sentenced to death, one to life in prison, and four others to different terms for killing the blogger.

Police said that after ABT was banned in May 2015, its members regrouped under the banner of Ansar al-Islam.

They suspect that sacked Army major Ziaul Haque, who masterminded a failed coup to topple the Sheikh Hasina government in January 2012, is involved with Ansar al-Islam.

The outfit reportedly claims to be the Bangladesh offshoot of Al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS).

According to the law enforcers and intelligence agencies, there are at least 12 militant outfits operating here. These are Islam o Muslim, Allahar Dal, Islamic Democratic Party, Towhidi Trust, Amiuddin Bangladesh, Ulama Anjuman Al Bayenaat, Bishwa Islamic Front, Harkat-e-Islam Al Jihad, Muslim Millat Sharifa Council, Dawate Islam, Joishey Mostafa of Bangladesh and Hizbullah Islami Somaj.