Terrorism in the Name of Religion
President Md. Abdul Hamid has commented that the anti-liberation forces are trying to disrupt the development of the country by promoting terrorism in the name of religion. He was speaking at the seventh national council of Ekattorer Ghatak Dalal Nirmul Committee on January 19 at the Engineers Institution in Dhaka. He said the anti-liberation forces are spewing the poisonous vapors of communalism through murder and terror and thereby blemishing the holy religion of Islam.
“Forcing Beautiful Girls to Marry Them”
BNP’s joint secretary general Mujibur Rahman Sarwar said that Awami League activists have attacked Khadija in Sylhet and another girl in Zokiganj. He said that Awami League leaders are no longer restricting themselves to tender business, they are also forcing beautiful girls to marry them. Sarwar made his remarks on January 19 at a program celebrating late BNP founder Ziaur Rahman’s 81st birth anniversary.
Disagreement Between President and Prime Minister
BNP said it could smell disagreement between the president and the prime minister of the country over the issue of dialogue amongst the political parties. The party’s secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir asked if the president’s relationship with the prime minister has suffered a setback. On January16, president Hamid suggested that the political parties should have a dialogue amongst themselves regarding the formation of the new Election Commission. Alamgir spoke of his suspicion at a meeting held at the Kazi Bashar auditorium at Gulistan on January 17. He lamented that his leader would like to see a democratic environment in the country created through discussion and dialogue but the prime minister has rejected that possibility.
What Does Not a Madman Say, What Does Not a Goat Eat!
Law minister Anisul Haq has bitterly criticized BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir for saying that the president might pardon those convicted in the seven-murder case in Narayanganj, who have been sentenced to death recently. Indirectly taking a dig at Mirza Fakhrul, the minister said that there is a playwright in BNP who always tells untruths on television screen. He said that playwright has questioned the verdict given against 26 accused including Nur Hossain and three RAB officials. This is nothing but a madman’s rant, he said, adding that there is nothing a madman does not say and nothing that a goat does not eat. Haq said it while inaugurating a re-excavation drive on Titas River on January 21 in the Akhaura upazila of Brahmanbaria district.
Leaders Will Have to Give Up Their All- Devouring Habit
Awami League general secretary and minister of roads and bridges, Obaidul Quader, has advised his party leaders that they should give up their all-devouring habits. He said people’s representatives should not become overlords and they must learn how to love their people. He warned that if that did not happen, then they would have to answer to the people once they are out of power. Quader also said that those representatives of people who would behave like overlords would not get a nomination for the next election. The minister was addressing a meeting held on January 20 to commemorate the prime minister’s now-deceased special assistant Mahbubul Haque Shakil.
Awami League's Number Two Team and Association with Military Coups
BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia has said that Jatiya Party chairman and prime minister's special envoy Hussain Muhammad Ershad is Awami League's number two team and that Awami League has been associated with every military coup. Khaleda was exchanging views at her political office in Gulshan on January 21 when she made the comment in response to Ershad's recent statement that he would like to see her in jail as soon as possible. She said Awami League was with him in 1986 and this party was associated with every military coup. It was associated with the government of Fakhruddin and Moinuddin. It was also associated with the failed coup attempt made by general Nasim.
People Are Getting Worried As Election Draws Nearer
Jatiya Party co-chairman GM Quader is concerned that people are getting worried as the election draws nearer. He then explained that past experience is the reason behind their anxiety. He further said that Hussain Muhammad Ershad is not only an asset for Jatiya Party but also for the country. He wished Ershad health and well-being before adding that casting vote is one of the fundamental rights of people. He was speaking at a discussion held by the Dhaka metropolitan chapter of Jatiya Party on January 21 when he also said that people get scared when they think of voting because it reminds them of the atrocious violence that they had experienced at the poll centers.
Unhealthy Politics Riding Over Democracy
BNP vice chairman Abdullah Al Noman is disappointed that although 45 years have elapsed since independence, democracy has failed to strike its roots in this country. He said that unhealthy poli - tics is getting preference over democracy. He was speaking at a seminar organized by Bangladesh New Generation Party on January 20 when he said that such a situation prevails in the country that one has to struggle for one’s right to vote. Noman added that the only thing that can change this situation is ballot, which is immensely more powerful than bullets, and people should have the right and opportunity to safely cast their votes.
No Alternative to Mass Movement If Dialogue Fails
BNP standing committee member barrister Moudud Ahmed has welcomed the president’s initiative to start a dialogue with the political parties. He said he hoped that the president would present this nation with a neutral Election Commission which would be formed on the basis of views expressed by all the political parties. He then added that if the president’s dialogue failed, then there would be no alternative to a mass movement. Ahmed was speaking at a discussion held by the Swadhinata Forum at National Press Club on January 20 when he also said that a neutral Election Condition would not be enough for a fair election unless it is enabled by a similar government.
Men Are Not Men Under a Government Run by Women
Krishak Sramik Janata League president Kader Siddique has resented that men are no longer men in a country where the government is run by women. He then emphasized that Bangladesh now needed a government run by men. He was addressing a rally on January 21 at Kaliya union when he added that Awami League and BNP might seem to be fighting outwardly, but inwardly they share a great deal of similarities. He said if BNP had torched 10 vehicles during the blockade, Awami League had torched 90 vehicles. Siddique also said that the failed leader Khaleda Zia even failed to convince people of that fact. He claimed that BNP is asking for his help now because it could not do anything on its own.