"Allegations In JVP-Backed No Confidence Motion On Target: We Voted Against It Considering Collective Opinion Of Muslim MPs": Bathiudeen

The allegations levelled in the JVP led No Confidence Motion (NCM) against the government are ‘on target.’ However, opinion of the Muslim MP collective needs to be respected, ACMC Leader Rishad Bathiudeen said in Parliament today.

“When I read through the points raised in today’s NCM brought by the JVP, I realized that all the accusations in it are 100 percent true, and even deserves Muslim legislators’ support” said Bathiudeen MP addressing the Parliament on 11 July. Bathiudeen also slammed opposition MPs (not of the JVP) for defaming him and his family by fabricating accusations that painted him as an individual behind Easter Sunday Bombings that devastated Sri Lanka on 21 April. “I too am a family man with children. Is it fair to target me publicly for political gains in a dangerous situation like this?” he asked.

“When I read through the points raised in today’s NCM brought by the JVP, I realized all the accusations raised by them are 100 percent true. My conscience tells me to vote in support of the No Confidence Motion. However, given that the blame of Easter Sunday bombings is heaped on me, my fellow Muslim politicians and the Muslim community of Sri Lanka, by the opposition, and the same opposition initiated a ten-point NCM against me by making dangerous and fabricated allegations against me linking to the terrorists-so much so it painted a picture that I was behind these attacks! Hurling these incriminating accusations at a time when the country was on the brink, the opposition sought cheap triumph by making me their main prey” he added.

“Many fellow MPs I have known for a long time have placed their signatures on the previous NCM against me, willingly or unwillingly. Then there was also the sad incident of Police, announcing to the public to come forward and file complaints against me that linked me to terrorists- for the first time in Sri Lanka’s history, complaints were openly encouraged against a member of the Cabinet, mentioning him by his name, in public media channels. They even went to the extent to declare “You can lodge your complaints till 12 June.”

"The NCM targeting me came into being in such a background. Despite police calling to lodge complaints against me, the persons who were behind it never attempted to directly go to Police and lodge any of their NCM accusations with the Police. Were they true sons of soil, couldn’t they lodge the same ten NCM accusations against me in the Police and asked them to take me into custody? Or they could have even tried to pin me to the highest penalty in the land-the death penalty-But they failed to do so. I strongly deny all the allegations against me in the NCM against me. Even today I challenge these opposition MPs to prove them-Even today, if they can prove just one of the allegations made in that NCM, I am ready to quit politics altogether. I call them to not to denigrate the more than 250 lives lost in the bombings, by such actions. I too am in pain with regard to families and people who perished. Once a six-member strong loving family, is today reduced to just a ‘one member’ family. All those who were involved in these bombings are to be punished and they are all accountable before the Almighty. Therefore all the allegations made in the NCM by JVP are truthful. We all –politicians, defense, government officials etc- stand equally responsible guilty for these bombings, before the Almighty. They all sacrificed despite all the intelligence info were clearly indicating of the coming bombings indicating dates and locations. When all the intelligence was clear, officials who were responsible ignored them, allowed incidents to take place, and then, blame was placed on me. We all of the Muslims in Sri Lanka-including the ACJU, intellectuals and leaders- clearly and unequivocally called on authorities to give maximum punishments to all who were connected with bomber Zahran and his network. We even denied burial for anyone connected to ISIS bombings in any of our cemeteries. There is no such thing as “Islamic Terrorism," he added.

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