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A Virus More Perilous than Corona

 ALI SUKHANVER

More dangerous and more perilous than Corona, there are so many other viruses too; the CAA and NRC are also among those deadly ones. If not properly taken care of, they are going to destroy the whole social fiber in the region particularly in the region around the Indian borders. Bangladesh would also be among the most affected areas. After implementation on the CAA and NRC in India, everyone in Bangladesh is looking towards Hasina Wajid with expectant eyes; this is the time she will have to prove what is more important for her; good-will of the Modi sarkar or larger interest of her own people. Apparently things seem not favouring Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Hasina Wajid as she has always been accused of showing an unfair and unjust tilt towards the Modi government considering Mr. Modi her strongest benefactor rather a god-father. A few months back, in October 2019, when she returned from India after signing seven bilateral treaties, she had to face very harsh reactions of her people. The most objectionable treaties include a new MoU on the use of Chattogram and Mongla ports and a MoU on withdrawal of 1.82 cusec of water from Feni River by India.
Commenting on Hasina’s four-day trip to India DW said in a report, “Hasina struck seven deals that, among others, allowed India to access water from a river flowing within Bangladesh. She also signed agreements allowing New Delhi to monitor Bangladesh’s coastal region and use two seaports for transporting goods. Hasina’s government did not issue an official statement prior to her visit to India and citizens came to know about the agreements only through news agencies.” After those treaties, people started looking at her with suspicious eyes and thinking whether she was the care-taker of her own people’s interests or a representative of the BJP sarkar in Bangladesh. Her selfish rather ‘self-interested’ behaviour no doubt disappointed and enraged the whole of Bangladeshi people. In the past she had ‘earned’ a lot of hatred by hanging mercilessly very old and agile leaders of her country’s religious parties. Her pleasing inclination towards India in form of signing those treaties has added more disgust to that already nurturing hatred. 
No doubt, the fear the people of Bangladesh are expressing, is of a very genuine nature. The implementation of CAA means migration of millions of stateless refugees to Bangladesh legally or illegally as Bangladesh is in closest access and immediacy to all of them. Moreover most of the expected immigrants would be the Muslims. Bangladesh, being a Muslim country won’t be in a position of closing doors on its Muslim brothers in trouble. In short Bangladesh will have to bear an unbearable financial pressure of these Muslim immigrants. In 2015, Bangladesh had to face the same ‘calamity’ when Myanmar started pushing out Rohingya Muslims from its Rakhine State as they were not recognized and admitted as an ethnic group. So those stateless, homeless and helpless Muslims had to take shelter in refugee camps in Bangladesh. Hosting such a huge number of refugees proved a serious burden on Bangladesh’s economy in the same way as the Afghan refugees shattered the economic balance of Pakistan. According to the UN Refugee Agency, there were more than 723,000 Rohingya Muslims who were forced to flee to Bangladesh in 2017.In September 2018 this number reached 1.1 million as pointed out by Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina during her address to the 73rd United Nations General Assembly. Now Bangladesh is expecting again the same type of turmoil in shape of refugees from India. They are demanding their Prime Minister to put a pressure on the BJP government not to push immigrants to Bangladesh after the enactment of the Citizenship Amendment Act. Feeling the extreme pressure of the political leaders and of the general public and just to pacify them, Hasina Wajid has sought a written assurance from the Narendra Modi government that refugees would not be sent to Bangladesh. India has yet not consented to give any such written assurance to Bangladesh. Just to convey resentment over the issue; Bangladesh Foreign Affairs Minister A.K. Abdul Momen and Home Affairs Minister Asaduzzaman Khan had to cancel their already planned visit to India. In short, this situation is widening the distances between India and Bangladesh. 
Experts are of the opinion that implementation of the CAA and NRC is simply a brutal step to change India into a purely Hindu land. After the enactment on these two amendments India would start drifting towards the status of a ‘pure- breed’ Hindu country as these amendments would deprive so many other communities from their basic human rights. The affected communities would leave with no other option but to migrate to other countries; Bangladesh would be in their easiest approach. These communities include not only the Muslims but also Dalits, Tamils, Gorkhas, Adivasi and Vanvasi tribes and so many others. Apprehending very severe impacts of the CAA and NRC on their own society, the Bangladeshi people are expecting from Hasina Wajid that she would raise her voice against these two amendments. Unfortunately Hasina is not in a position to do so with sincerity and honesty as her stance over the CAA and NRC would simply annoy her ‘masters’. This situation is moving towards the demand of a separate homeland for those whom India, the Hindu India, is not willing to accept. 

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