Advertisement

Islam, Islamism, and Democracy in Bangladesh

  • Md Nazrul Islam
  • Md Saidul IslamEmail author
Chapter
  • 4 Downloads

Abstract

The chapter examines the role of the organized Islam-based political parties in the interplay of Islamism and democracy in Bangladesh. We will critically investigate to what extent the mainstream Islamist political parties in Bangladesh (e.g., Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami, Islami Andolan Bangladesh, Islami Oikya Jote, Khelafat Majlis, Bangladesh Khelafat Andolan, and Zaker Party) have tension or congruence with democracy. Most of these parties however historically engaged in competition and mobilization, contested elections aiming to attain power through constitutional means, albeit with minimal success. These mainstream Islamist parties consistently oppose violence and terrorism. We will also discuss a few fringe violent Islamist parties, already banned in Bangladesh, including Jamaatul Mujahedeen Bangladesh (JMB), Jagrata Muslim Janata Bangladesh (JMJB), Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HuJi), and Ansarullah Bangla Team. These parties oppose democracy and resort to violence to establish what they call a “pure Islamic polity.” They perceive democracy as kufr (unbelief) and a source of polytheism.

Keywords

Islamism Political Islam Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami Islami Jamaatul Mujahedeen Bangladesh 

References

  1. Ahamed, Emajuddin. 1983. “Current Trends of Islam in Bangladesh.” Economic and Political Weekly 18 (25): 1114–1119.Google Scholar
  2. Ahmad, Mumtaz. 1991. “Islamic Fundamentalism in South Asia: The Jamaat-i-Islami and the Tablighi Jamaat of South Asia.” In Fundamentalism Observed, edited by Martin E. Marty and R. Scott Appleby, 457–530. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  3. Ahmad, Khurshid. 2010. “Islam: Basic Principles and Characteristics.” In Islam: Its Meaning and Message, edited by Khurshid Ahmad, 27–44. London: The Islamic Foundation.Google Scholar
  4. Ahmad, Irfan. 2013. “Islam and Politics in South Asia.” In The Oxford Handbook of Islam and Politics, edited by John L. Esposito and Emad El-Din Shahin, 324–339. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  5. Ahmed, Moudud. 1991. Bangladesh: Era of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Dhaka: University Press Limited.Google Scholar
  6. Awdallah, Sheikh Talib. 2006. Beloved by Allah: Emergence of Light from Al-Aqsa Mosque Launch of Hizb ut-Tahrir March. London: Khilafah Publications.Google Scholar
  7. Bammi, Lt. Gen. Y. M. 2010. India-Bangladesh Relations: The Way Ahead. New Delhi: Vij Books India Pvt. Ltd.Google Scholar
  8. Banu, U. A. B. Razia Akter. 1994. “Jamaat-i-Islami in Bangladesh: Challenges and Prospects.” In Islam, Muslims and the Modern State: Case-Studies of Muslims in Thirteen Countries, edited by Hussin Mutalib and Taj Hashmi, 80–99. New York: St. Martin’s Press.Google Scholar
  9. Baxter, Craig. 1991. “Bangladesh in 1990: Another New Beginning?” Asian Survey 31 (2): 146–152.Google Scholar
  10. Baxter, Craig, and Syedur Rahman. 1991. “Bangladesh Military: Political Institutionalization and Economic Development.” Journal of Asian and African Studies 26 (1–2): 43–60.Google Scholar
  11. Bertocci, Peter J. 2006. “A Sufi Movement in Bangladesh: The Maijbhandari Tariqa and Its Followers.” Contributions to Indian Sociology 40 (1): 1–28.Google Scholar
  12. Datta, Sreeradha. 2007. “Islamic Militancy in Bangladesh: The Threat from Within.” South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies 30 (1): 145–170.Google Scholar
  13. Ehsan, Mohammad. 2010. “Challenges of Democratic Consolidation in Bangladesh: Where Does It Stand in the Arduous Path?” In Political Management in Bangladesh, edited by Al Masud Hasanuzzaman, 19–53. Dhaka: A.H. Development Publishing House.Google Scholar
  14. Feldman, Shelley. 2015. “Bangladesh in 2014: Illusive Democracy.” Asian Survey 55 (1): 67–74.Google Scholar
  15. Ganguly, Sumit. 2006. “The Rise of Islamist Militancy in Bangladesh.” United States Institute of Peace: Special Report 171: 1–12. http://www.usip.org/sites/default/files/SRaug06_2.pdf (accessed 14 February 2016).
  16. Ghosh, Partha S. 1993. “Bangladesh at the Crossroads: Religion and Politics.” Asian Survey 33 (7): 697–710.Google Scholar
  17. Hakim, Muhammad A. 1998. “The Use of Islam as a Political Legitimization Tool: The Bangladesh Experience, 1972–1990.” Asian Journal of Political Science 6 (2): 98–117.Google Scholar
  18. Hasan, Mubashar. 2011. “Democracy and Political Islam in Bangladesh.” South Asia Research 31 (2): 97–117.Google Scholar
  19. Hasan, Mubashar. 2012. “Historical Developments of Political Islam with Reference to Bangladesh.” Journal of Asian and African Studies 47 (2): 155–167.Google Scholar
  20. Hashmi, Taj. 1994. “Islam in Bangladesh Politics.” In Islam, Muslims and the Modern State: Case-Studies of Muslims in Thirteen Countries, edited by Hussin Mutalib and Taj Hashmi, 100–138. New York: St. Martin’s Press.Google Scholar
  21. Hossain, Akhtar. 2000. “Anatomy of Hartal Politics in Bangladesh.” Asian Survey 40 (3): 508–529.Google Scholar
  22. Hossain, Ishtiaq, and Noore Alam Siddiquee. 2004. “Islam in Bangladesh Politics: The Role of Ghulam Azam of Jamaat-i-Islami.” Inter-Asia Cultural Studies 5 (3): 384–399.Google Scholar
  23. Huque, A. Shafiqul and M. Yeahia Akhter. 1987. “The Ubiquity of Islam: Religion and Society in Bangladesh.” Pacific Affairs 60 (2): 200–225.Google Scholar
  24. Islam, Syed Serajul. 1987. “Bangladesh in 1986: Entering a New Phase.” Asian Survey 27 (2): 163–172.Google Scholar
  25. Islam, Maidul. 2015. Limits of Islamism: Jamaat-e-Islami in Contemporary India and Bangladesh. New Delhi: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  26. Kabir, Bhuian M. Monoar. 2006. Politics and Development of the Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh. Dhaka: A.H. Development Publishing House.Google Scholar
  27. Kabir, Humayun. 2015. “Beyond Jamaat-e-Islami: The Political Rise of the Deobandis, the Mystic Leaders, and Islamism in Bangladesh.” In Religion and Representation: Islam and Democracy, edited by Ingrid Mattson, Paul Nesbitt-Larking, and Nawaz Tahir, 50–77. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.Google Scholar
  28. Karagiannis, Emmanuel, and Clark McCauley. 2006. “Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami: Evaluating the Threat Posed by a Radical Islamic Group That Remains Nonviolent.” Terrorism and Political Violence 18 (2): 315–334.Google Scholar
  29. Karim, A. Tariq, and C. Christine Fair. 2007. “Bangladesh at the Crossroads.” United States Institute of Peace: Special Report 181: 1–10. http://www.usip.org/sites/default/files/sr181.pdf (accessed 14 February 2016).
  30. Khan, Zillur R. 1985. “Islam and Bengali Nationalism.” Asian Survey 25 (8): 834–851.Google Scholar
  31. Khan, Moinul. 2011. “Islamist Militancy in Bangladesh: Why It Failed to Take Root.” Journal of Policing, Intelligence and Counter Terrorism 6 (1): 51–64.Google Scholar
  32. Lewis, David. 2011. Bangladesh: Politics, Economy and Civil Society. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  33. Lintner, Bertil. 2002. “Be Ware of Bangladesh: Cocoon of Terror.” Far Eastern Economic Review, 4 April, 14–18.Google Scholar
  34. Maniruzzaman, Talukder. 1976. “Bangladesh in 1975: The Fall of the Mujib Regime and Its Aftermath.” Asian Survey 16 (2): 119–129.Google Scholar
  35. Maniruzzaman, Talukder. 1992. “The Fall of the Military Dictator: 1991 Elections and the Prospect of Civilian Rule in Bangladesh.” Pacific Affairs 65 (2): 203–224.Google Scholar
  36. Mills, Samuel Landell. 1998. “The Hardware of Sanctity: Anthropomorphic Objects in Bangladesh Sufism.” In Embodying Charisma: Modernity, Locality and the Performance of Emotion in Sufi Cults, edited by Pnina Werbner and Helene Basu, 31–54. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  37. Molla, Gyasuddin. 2004. “The Awami League: From Charismatic Leadership to Political Party.” In Political Parties in South Asia, edited by Subrata K. Mitra, Mike Enskat, and Clemens Spiess, 216–235. Westport: Praeger Publishers.Google Scholar
  38. Moniruzzaman, M. 2009. “Party Politics and Political Violence in Bangladesh: Issues, Manifestation and Consequences.” South Asian Survey 16 (1): 81–99.Google Scholar
  39. Moten, A. Rashid. 1981. “Parliamentary Elections in Bangladesh.” The Indian Journal of Political Science 42 (2): 58–73.Google Scholar
  40. Osman, M. N. Mohamed. 2010. “Reviving the Caliphate in the Nusantara: Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia’s Mobilization Strategy and Its Impact in Indonesia.” Terrorism and Political Violence 22 (4): 601–622.Google Scholar
  41. Osman, M. N. Mohamed. 2012. “Hizb ut-Tahrir.” In Routledge Handbook of Political Islam, edited by Shahram Akbarzadeh, 89–104. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  42. Parvez, Saimum. 2016. “Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism in Bangladesh.” In Routledge Handbook of Contemporary Bangladesh, edited by Ali Riaz and Mohammad Sajjadur Rahman, 425–437. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  43. Rahman, Md. Ataur. 1983. “Bangladesh in 1982: Beginnings of the Second Decade.” Asian Survey 23 (2): 149–157.Google Scholar
  44. Riaz, Ali. 2004. God Willing: The Politics of Islamism in Bangladesh. New York: Rowman & Littlefield.Google Scholar
  45. Riaz, Ali. 2014. “Bangladesh’s Failed Election.” Journal of Democracy 25 (2): 119–130.Google Scholar
  46. Riaz, Ali, and Kh. Ali Ar Raji. 2011. “Who Are the Islamists?” In Political Islam and Governance in Bangladesh, edited by Ali Riaz and C. Christine Fair, 46–70. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  47. Sayedee, Moulana Delawar Hossain. 2006. Islam in Subduing Terror and Militancy. Dhaka: Islamic Foundation Bangladesh.Google Scholar
  48. Stevenson, Angus. 2010. Oxford Dictionary of English. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political StudiesShahjalal University of Science and TechnologySylhetBangladesh
  2. 2.Division of SociologyNanyang Technological UniversityJurongSingapore

Personalised recommendations