In the case of Bangladesh, this paper argues, the nature of the prevailing political culture is playing an important role in the growth of extremist politics and the resulting violence. Most of the political parties are democratic, but only in name. Leaders of the parties are selected rather than elected, dissent within the parties is next to non-existent and grassroots members are not allowed to offer input, which is vital for maintaining a vibrant democratic system. The danger for Bangladesh, where democracy is nearly absent in all but in name, is that such a situation might create a space for both right and left wing terrorism to flourish. The objective of this paper is, therefore, to trace the evolution of Bangladesh’s politics and highlight the impact of vitriolic politics as a catalyst in the spread of political extremism in Bangladesh.
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