Breach of Faith

Persecution of the Ahmadiyya Community in Bangladesh

[1] "Ahmadiyya," The Columbia Encyclopedia, 2003 [online], http://www.bartleby.com/65/ah/Ahmadiyy.html (retrieved May 25, 2005).

[2]Ibid.

[3] "The Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam: An Overview," Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, 1995-2005 [online], http://alislam.org/introduction (retrieved May 25, 2005).

[4] "Ahmadiyya," The Columbia Encyclopedia, 2003 [online], http://www.bartleby.com/65/ah/Ahmadiyy.html (retrieved May 25, 2005).

[5]M. Nadeem Ahmad Siddiq, Enforced Apostasy: Zaheerudin v. State and the Official Persecution of the Ahmadiyya Community in Pakistan, (14 Law and Inequality: 1995), p. 275-79.

[6]Figures for the total membership of the Ahmadiyya Community vary greatly between sources. While it is difficult to provide an exact figure of the Ahmadiyya population, estimates of around 20 million would be appropriate

[7] Human Rights Watch interview with Abdul Awwal Khan Chowdury, Central Missionary, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, August 23, 2004.

[8] "Appeal to Government For Banning All Activities of Qadianis," Weekly Ittesal (Narayangan), January 3, 1992.

[9] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Kamal Ahmed, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Khakdan, March 29, 2004.

[10] "Demand for the Declaration of the Qadianis as non-Muslims," The Daily Inqilab, February 5, 1992.

[11] "Attack on the Qadianis in Kulna," Daining Sangbad (National Daily), March 1, 1992.

[12] Ibid.

[13] "Six Held For Resorting To Violence in City," The Daily Tribune (Khulna), March 1, 1992.

[14] Ibid.

[15] "Ahmadiyya Masjid Complex Set Ablaze," The Daily Star, October 30, 1992.

[16] Ibid.

[17] Ibid.

[18] The Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam, Inc., Bangladesh: State of Religious Freedom, Statement for the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, April 30, 2004.

[19] Ibid, p. 6.

[20] Ibid.

[21] "Khatme Nabuwat Grand Conference: December 24," The Bangladesh Observer, December 20, 1993.

[22] "Ahmadiyyas Worried Over Friday's Congregation," The Daily Star,December 18, 1993.

[23] "Khatme Nabuwat Grand Conference: December 24," The Bangladesh Observer, December 20, 1993.

[24] Ibid.

[25] "Khatme Nabuwat Is To Observe 1st Jan. as 'Demand Day'," Daily Shongbad (Dhaka),December 25, 1992.

[26] Ibid.

[27] The Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam, Inc., Bangladesh: State of Religious Freedom, Statement for the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, Apr. 30, 2004, p. 7.

[28] "Muslims Should Lead an Islamic Lifestyle," Daily Inqilab (Dhaka), February 28, 1997.

[29] "Public Meeting in Children's Park: Call to Declare Qadianis as Non-Muslims," Daily Gonodabi, Patukhali (Bengali), May 22, 1997.

[30] Ibid.

[31] Ibid.

[32] "A Memorandum to the Speaker to Declare the Qadianis as 'Non-Muslim'," Daily Inqilab, July 5, 1997; "Procession Towards Parliament House," The Daily Sangram (Dhaka), July 5, 1997.

[33] "Kadiani office attacked,"Jamalpur Barta,July 24, 1998.

[34] "50 hurt in attack on Kadiani mosque in Kushtia," Prothom Alo, January 8, 1999.

[35] Ibid.

[36]"Kadianis flee Kushtia after mosque capture," Prothom Alo, February 9, 1999.

[37] "Annual Report on International Religious Freedom: Bangladesh2003" Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, U.S. Department of State, December 18, 2003 [online], http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2003/24468.htm (retrieved May 25, 2005).

[38] "Annual Report on International Religious Freedom: Bangladesh2000," Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, U.S. Department of State, September 5, 2000 [online], http://www.state.gov/www/global/human_rights/irf/irf_rpt/irf_banglade.html (retrieved May 25, 2005).

[39] "Annual Report on International Religious Freedom: Bangladesh 2000," " Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, U.S. Department of State.

[40] Ibid.

[41] Ibid.

[42] "Kadianis flee to Akhaura after looting," Bhorer Kagoj, April 16, 2000.

[43] "Kadiani homes burnt, mosque destroyed in Kodda" Prothom Alo, April, 26, 2000.

[44]Ibid.

[45] "Kadiani mosque attacked in Jamalpur," Ajker Kagoj, June 25, 2001.

[46] Ibid.

[47] Ibid.

[48] Ibid.

[49] An upazila is a sub-district.

[50] "Kadianis Arrested," Doinic Ikilab, October 15, 2002.

[51] Ibid.

[52] "International Khatme Nabuwat conference held," Doinic Ikilab, January 3, 2003.

[53] Ibid.

[54] "Bangladesh Khilafat Andolan demands Kadianis be declared infidels," Doinic Ikilab, January 11, 2003.

[55] "Kadianis 'satanic non- Muslims'," Doinic Ikilab, February 1, 2003.

[56]Bangladesh Anjuman-E-Ahmadiyya v. Bangladesh, 45 D.L.R. 185.

[57] Reported in Asian Human Rights Commission Newsletter, Volume 108, Number 1.

[58]Amjad Mahmood Khan, Persecution of the Ahmadiyya Community in Pakistan: An Analysis Under International Law and International Relations, (Boston: Harvard Human Rights Journal, 2003).

[59] In the 1998 Census, 286,212 individuals declared themselves to be Ahmadis. [Census of Pakistan 1998, (Pakistan Report, December 2001), p. 207, table 8.] The 2004 population of Pakistan is estimated to be 148 million in the Economic Survey of Pakistan 2003-04. Using the same proportion as in the 1998 census, the Ahmadi projection for 2004 would be 319,680. Due to fears of persecution or the fact that they do not consider Census categorizations of "Muslim" and "Qadiani" to be mutually exclusive, it would be reasonable to assume that many Ahmadis opted for the "Muslim" category. Assuming only one in four declared themselves as Ahmadis to the Census takers, the 2004 size of the community in Pakistan could be projected to be 1,278,720 (approximately 1.28 million or 0.86 per cent of the population).

[60] Articles 260(3)(a) and (b) of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan were added. In addition to the constraints the amendment placed on Ahmadis, it also called for the nationalization of Christian schools, so that the influence of private Christian groups was radically reduced.

[61] M. Nadeem Ahmad Siddiq, Enforced Apostasy: Zaheerudin v. State and the Official Persecution of the Ahmadiyya Community in Pakistan, (14 Law and Inequality: 1995), p. 275-89. In Mujibur Rahman v. Government of Pakistan, the Federal Shariat Court was asked to exercise its jurisdiction under Article 203D of the constitution to rule whether or not Ordinance XX was contrary to the injunctions of the Qur'an and Sunnah. The court upheld the validity of Ordinance XX and ruled that parliament had acted within its authority to declare Ahmadis as non-Muslims. Ordinance XX, the court maintained, merely prohibited Ahmadis from "calling themselves what they [were] not," namely Muslims. See Mujibur Rehman v Gov't of Pakistan, 1985 S.D. Vol. II (Fed. Shariat Court) 382, 473 (Pak.).

[62]Pakistan Penal CodeSection 295-C (part of the Criminal Law Amendment Act of 1986, which amended the punishments enumerated in Sections 298-B and 298-C to include death). "Whoever by words, either spoken or written, or by visible representation, or by any imputation, innuendo, or insinuation, directly or indirectly, defiles the sacred name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) shall be punished with death, or imprisonment for life, and shall be also liable to fine."

[63]Pakistan Penal Code Section 295-C (part of the Criminal Law Amendment Act of 1986, which amended the punishments enumerated in Sections 298-B and 298-C to include death).

[64] Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, U.S. Department of State, "Annual Report on International Religious Freedom: Bangladesh2003" December 18, 2003 [online],. http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2004/35514.htm (retrieved May 25, 2005).

[65] Ibid.

[66] International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), G.A. res. 2200A (XXI), 21 U.N. GAOR Supp. (No. 16) p. 52, U.N. Doc. A/6316 (1966), enforced March 23, 1976. Articles 18 & 19. Bangladesh became a party to the ICCPR in 2000.

[67] Ibid, article 26.

[68] Ibid, article 27.

[69] Human Rights Watch interview with Mohammad Ataur Rehman, Dhaka, August 25, 2004.

[70] Human Rights Watch interview with Abul Bashr, Dhaka, August 25, 2004.

[71] "Kadiani Imam Killed Under the Leadership of Jama'ati Imam," Bhorer Kagoi, November 17, 2003.

[72] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Abdul Awwal Khan Chowdury, Central Missionary, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, March 26, 2004.

[73] Human Rights Watch interview with Abdul Qadir, Dhaka, August 26, 2004.

[74] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Justice K.M. Subhan, Retired Supreme Court Justice, Dhaka, March 28, 2004.

[75] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Justice K.M. Subhan, Retired Supreme Court Justice, Dhaka, March 28, 2004..

[76] "Kadiani Imam Killed Under the Leadership of Jama'ati Imam," Bhorer Kagoi.

[77] Human Rights Watch interview with Shabbir Ali, Dhaka, August 25, 2004.

[78] "Ten Kadiani Families Under House Arrest For a Week in Bheramera," Andoloner Bazar, October 28, 2003.

[79] "No Settlement Between Qadiyanis and Sunnis in Bheramera," The Banglabazar Patrika, October 30, 2003.

[80] Ibid.

[81] Human Rights Watch interview with Shabbir Ali, Dhaka, August 25, 2004.

[82] Human Rights Watch interview with Mohammad Mominul Islam alias Raqeeb, Dhaka, August 24, 2004.

[83] Human Rights Watch interview with Mohammad Mominul Islam alias Raqeeb, Dhaka, August 24, 2004.

[84] Human Rights Watch interview with Mohammad Mominul Islam alias Raqeeb, Dhaka, August 24, 2004.

[85] "No Settlement Between Qadiyanis and Sunnis in Bheramera," The Banglabazar Patrika; "Ten Kadiani Families Under House Arrest For a Week in Bheramera," Andoloner Bazar.

[86] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Abdul Awwal Khan Chowdury, Central Missionary, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, March 26, 2004.

[87] Human Rights Watch telephone interview with non-Ahmadi school-goer. Dhaka, August 25, 2004.

[88] Human Rights Watch interview with Shabbir Ali, Dhaka, August 25, 2004.

[89] Human Rights Watch interview with Shireen, Dhaka, August 26, 2004.

[90] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Abdul Awwal Khan Chowdury, Central Missionary, Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, March 26, 2004.

[91] Human Rights Watch interview with Bilquis Akhtar, Dhaka, August 26, 2004.

[92] "Ten Kadiani Families Under House Arrest For a Week in Bheramera," Andoloner Bazar.

[93] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Abdul Awwal Khan Chowdury, Central Missionary, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, March 26, 2004; "No Settlement Between Qadiyanis and Sunnis in Bheramera," The Banglabazar Patrika.

[94] Human Rights Watch interview with Abdul Awwal Khan Chowdury, Central Missionary, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, August. 26, 2004.

[95] Human Rights Watch interview with Rafiq Ahmad, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, April 2, 2004. His account is confirmed by one local newspaper. "Crowd Tries to Attack Ahmadiyya Mosque in City," The Daily Star, November 21, 2003.

[96] "Crowd Tries to Attack Ahmadiyya Mosque in City," The Daily Star.

[97] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Rafiq Ahmad, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, April 2, 2004.

[98] Ibid.

[99] Ibid.

[100] "Bid to Capture Ahmadiyya Mosque Foiled in Patuakhali," New Age, May 12, 2004; "Hundreds Clash with Cops over Ahmadiyya Mosque Row," New Age, November 22, 2003; "Tejgaon Industrial Area Turns into Battlefield," The Bangladesh Observer, November 22, 2003; "Clash Centering Qadiani Mosque: 50 Injured," The Independent, November 22, 2003; "Nakhalpara Turns into a Battlefield," The News Today, November 22, 2003; "Controversy over Kadianis; 150 Hurt as Police, Muslims Clash," The New Nation, November 22, 2003; "50 Injured in Clash with Kadianis," The Financial Express, November 22, 2003.

[101] "Bid to Capture Ahmadiyya Mosque Foiled in Patuakhali," New Age.

[102] "Bid to Capture Ahmadiyya Mosque Foiled in Patuakhali," New Age; "Hundreds Clash with Cops over Ahmadiyya Mosque Row," New Age; "Tejgaon Industrial Area Turns into Battlefield," The Bangladesh Observer; "Clash Centering Qadiani Mosque: 50 Injured," The Independent; "Nakhalpara Turns into a Battlefield," The News Today; "Controversy over Kadianis; 150 Hurt as Police, Muslims Clash," The New Nation; "50 Injured in Clash with Kadianis," The Financial Express.

[103] Ibid.

[104] "Bid to Capture Ahmadiyya Mosque Foiled in Patuakhali," New Age; "Hundreds Clash with Cops over Ahmadiyya Mosque Row," New Age.

[105] "Bid to Capture Ahmadiyya Mosque Foiled in Patuakhali," New Age; "50 Injured in Clash with Kadianis," The Financial Express.

[106] "Bid to Capture Ahmadiyya Mosque Foiled in Patuakhali," New Age; "Hundreds Clash with Cops over Ahmadiyya Mosque Row," New Age; "Tejgaon Industrial Area Turns into Battlefield," The Bangladesh Observer; "Clash Centering Qadiani Mosque: 50 Injured," The Independent; "Nakhalpara Turns into a Battlefield," The News Today; "Controversy over Kadianis; 150 Hurt as Police, Muslims Clash," The New Nation.

[107] "IGP Pledges Action against Attackers," The Daily Star, November 23, 2003.

[108] "No Move to Arrest Attackers, Instigators," The Daily Star, November 23, 2003.

[109] "IGP Pledges Action against Attackers," The Daily Star.

[110]"Yet Another Warning in Sarishabari," The Daily Star, December 7, 2003.

[111] "Anti-Ahmadia Group Gives One-Week Deadline to Government," The Daily Star, December 6, 2003; "Qadiani-Rally Muslims' Ultimatum to Remove Ahmadiyya Mosque," The Independent

[112] "Anti-Ahmadia Group Gives One-Week Deadline to Government," The Daily Star.

[113] Ibid.

[114] Ibid.

[115] "Anti-Ahmadiyyas' Ultimatum to Government," The Daily Star, December 20, 2003.

[116] Ibid.

[117] Ibid.

[118] "Bigots demand Bill Declaring Ahmadiyyas non-Muslims," The Daily Star, December 27, 2003.

[119] Ibid.

[120] "Anti-Ahmadiyya Group Issues Fresh Threat," The Daily Star, January 3, 2004.

[121] "Anti-Ahmadiyya Group Issues Fresh Threat," The Daily Star, January 3, 2004.

[122]International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), G.A. res. 2200A (XXI), 21 U.N. GAOR Supp. (No. 16) p. 52, U.N. Doc. A/6316 (1966), enforced March 23, 1976. Articles 18 & 19.

[123] Sharier Khan, "New Wave of Intolerance: Bangladesh Cracks Down on Muslim Sect," OneWorld South Asia, January 2004 [online], http://www.thepersecution.org/world/bangladesh/2004/own040109sa.html (retrieved May 25, 2005).

[124] "Ahmadiyya Books Banned," Daily Star, January 9, 2004.

[125] Khan, "New Wave of Intolerance: Bangladesh Cracks Down on Muslim Sect," OneWorld South Asia.

[126] Human Rights Watch interview with Abdul Awwal Khan Chowdury, Central Missionary, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, August, 26, 2004.

[127] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Mosharef Hossain Shahjahan, State Minister, Ministry of Religious Affairs, Dhaka, March 25, 2004.

[128] Ibid.

[129] Ibid.

[130] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Mahfuz Anam, Editor in Chief, The Daily Star, Dhaka, March 27, 2004.

[131] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Mosharef Hossain Shahjahan, State Minister, Ministry of Religious Affairs, Dhaka, March 25, 2004.

[132] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Mosharef Hossain Shahjahan, State Minister, Ministry of Religious Affairs, Dhaka, March 25, 2004.

[133] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Mahfuz Anam, Editor in Chief, The Daily Star, Dhaka, March 27, 2004.

[134] "Deputy Minister of Religious Affairs Told BBC That Publication Has Been Banned to Protect the Ahmadis," Prothom Alo, January 10, 2004 [Human Rights Watch translation].

[135] "Fiddling While Bangladesh Burns," The Daily Star, April 27, 2004.

[136]HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Abdul Awwal Khan Chowdury, Dhaka, March 26, 2004.

[137] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Abdul Awwal Khan Chowdury, Dhaka, March 26, 2004.

[138] Ibid.

[139] "Police Allow Zealots to Storm Ahmadiyya Mosque," The Daily Star, April 17, 2004.

[140] "Protest Against Ahmadiyyas in City," The New Age, April 17, 2004.

[141] International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), G.A. res. 2200A (XXI), 21 U.N. GAOR Supp. (No. 16) p. 52, U.N. Doc. A/6316 (1966), enforced March 23, 1976. Article 2.

[142] Manfred Nowak, U.N. Covenant on Civil and Political Rights: CCPR Commentary (Arlington: Engel, 1993), p. 65.

[143] "Minister Snubs Demand for Declaring Ahmadiyyas non-Muslim," The Daily Star, December 9, 2003.

[144] Ibid.

[145] "Ahmadiyya books banned," The Daily Star, January 9, 2004.

[146] Rally in Dhaka, April 2, 2004.

[147] "Islamist Group's New Deadline for Declaring Ahmadiyyas non-Muslim," The Daily Star, April 7, 2004.

[148] Ibid.

[149] The events described in this section come from HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interviews conducted on March 29 and 30, 2004 with eight Ahmadi villagers, two members of the press, and three members of the police.

[150] Bangladeshi administration is broken down into upalizas (or thanas) which are the equivalent of police stations. In every thana, or upaliza, there is an O.C., who is a police commissioner, and a UNO, or union nirbahi officer, who is the administrative officer. The three villages affected in this incident are Kukua, Khakdan, and Krishnanagar, which all fall under the Aamtoli thana. The Deputy Commissioner is the head of both the O.C. and the UNO.

[151] Harvard Human Rights Program/HLS Advocates for Human Rights interview with Ali Ahmed Master, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Krishnanagar, March 30, 2004.

[152] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Joynal Abedin, March 30, 2004.

[153] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Lutfor Rahman, March 30, 2004

[154] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Kamal Ahmed, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Khakdan, March 29, 2004.

[155] Ibid.

[156] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Ali Ahmed Master, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Krishnanagar, March 29, 2004.

[157] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Kamal Ahmed, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Khakdan, March 29, 2004.

[158] Ibid.

[159] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Ali Ahmed Master, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Krishnanagar, March 29, 2004.

[160] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Ali Ahmed Master, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Krishnanagar, March 30, 2004.

[161] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Rokeya Begum, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, March 31, 2004.

[162] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Nuzmul Kabir, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, March 31, 2004.

[163] HLS Advocates for Human Rights/ Harvard Human Rights Program interview with Arman Ali and Anhar Parveen Begum, Amadiyya Muslim Jama'at, Dhaka, March 31, 2004.

[164] Ibid.

[165] Ibid.

[166] "Panic Grips Ahmadiyyas In Barisal, Patuakhali," The Daily Star, May 11, 2004; "Ahmadiyyas Urge Safety, Security," New Age, May 10, 2004.

[167] Ibid.

[168] "Panic Grips Ahmadiyyas In Barisal, Patuakhali," The Daily Star; "Ahmadiyyas Urge Safety, Security," New Age.

[169] Ibid.

[170] "Anti-Ahmadiyya Plan Foiled," The Daily Star, May 13, 2004; "Bid to Capture Ahmadiyya Mosque Foiled in Patuakhali," New Age, May 12, 2004.

[171] "Anti-Ahmadiyya Agitation: Minister Admits Government Failute, Victims Sniff Jamaat Link," Matamat, May 30, 2004 [online], http://www.matamat.com/fullstory.php?gd=17&cd=2004-05-30 (Retrieved May 25, 2005).

[172] "Ahmadiyya Complex capture foiled," The Daily Star, August 28, 2004.

[173] Human Rights Watch telephone interview  with Abdul Awwal Chaudry, November 5, 2004.

[174] Human Rights Watch telephone interview with Abdul Awwal Chowdhury, March 24, 2004.

[175]  Waliur Rehman, "Bangladesh in Foreigners Warning," BBC News Online, March 15, 2005 [online], http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/4351765.stm (retrieved May 25, 2005).

[176] "Cops help Bogra bigots pull down mosque signboard," The Daily Star, March 12, 2005 [online],http://www.thedailystar.net/2005/03/12/d5031201033.htm

[177] "50 hurt as bigots attack Ahmadiyyas in Satkhira," The Daily Star, April 18, 2005 [online],

http://www.thedailystar.net/2005/04/18/d5041801022.htm (retrieved May 25, 2005).

[178] Human Rights Watch telephone interview with Abdul Awwal Chowdhury, May 26, 2005.

[179] Human Rights Watch interview with Rahima Begum through Awwal Chowdury, May 28, 2005

[180] "50 hurt as bigots attack Ahmadiyyas in Satkhira," The Daily Star, April 18, 2005.

[181] The Constitution of the People's Republic of Bangladesh. Bangladesh Law, April 30, 1996 [online], http://www.bangladeshlaw.org/constitution.php, article 41 (1972) (retrieved May 25, 2005).

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