Community engagement in curbing violent extremism: the Bangladesh context
Since its independence in 1971, Bangladesh has struggled between being a secular state and a theocratic state. Although secularism prevails, despite 89.1% of the population being Muslim, the social fabric of society remains tumultuous. Three factors, religious education, the return of jihadists from Afghanistan, and the entry of Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar, have radicalised the community, mainly the youth, to perpetrate extremist acts.
To neutralise such acts, the government has enacted various legislation and signed treaties with other countries, such as India, to share relevant information. Still, this falls short of containing extremism. Instead, extremism is becoming a significant challenge and is a serious concern at the national level. Even with the government’s efforts to contain extremism and build a harmonious society, some sections of society are becoming marginalised. Therefore, this research aims to determine how community engagement influences the curbing of extremism, as Bangladesh is a densely populated country with closely interwoven community relationships.