Thursday, June 09, 2005

BANGLADESH : Crackdown on Terror or Image-building Exercise?

The relationship between the BSF and the BDR had dipped to a new low after the killing of the BSF officer Jiban Kumar at Lankamura in Tripura on April 16 this year. This incident had done damage to the image of the BDR which was seen as an organization involved in promoting smuggling in the bordering areas. To improve its image, BDR wanted to take some action which can put the force in a positive light. Besides, the aim was also to reduce to the hostility generated after the killing of the BSF officer. Similarly, the elite anti-crime force, Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) involved in the operation is also suffering from a poor image. Inside Bangladesh , RAB has become notorious for human rights violation for alleged extra-judicial killings in the name of 'crossfire'. For this the organization was criticized by the international community and human rights organizations. The operation in Moulvibazar could have been conducted single-handedly by BDR. But, the assistance of RAB was also sought so that the success of operation would boost its image.

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