Controversial Islamic Scholar Amir Hamza has been Arrested

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News Desk

Police have arrested controversial Islamist preachers, whose rallies draw tens of thousands of people, on charges of inciting militants, a senior officer said on 25 May. Amir Hamza is the latest high-profile Islamist to be held since March, when a visit by India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi sparked protests in which at least 13 people died. Hamza was detained in a raid at his home in the western city of Kushtia and then transferred to Dhaka, police said.

A court remanded Hamza for 10 days for questioning, Mohammad Asaduzzaman, head of Dhaka police’s counter-terrorism unit, said. “He is an accused in an anti-terrorism case,” Asaduzzaman said, adding that investigators had found videos of Hamza’s speeches in the mobile phone of a suspect detained this month over an alleged plot to attack Bangladesh’s parliament.

Hamza, who is in his 30s, is one of a new generation of Islamist preachers whose firebrand speeches draw huge crowds in the Muslim majority nation. Hamza’s YouTube video speeches get millions of views. In 2019, Mizanur Rahmani Azhari, another prominent preacher, fled the country over fears he would be prosecuted for his remarks.

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