Lived in Exile Due to Zia
Prime minister Sheikh Hasina has blamed former president Ziaur Rahman for being forced to live in exile after the killing of her parents and other loved ones in 1975. She said she had to live on foreign soil between 1975 and 1981 because “killer Zia” did not allow her and her sister Sheikh Rehana to return home. She said it in response to a question in parliament on the anniversary of the historical Six-Point Day.
Country Under the Shroud of Fear
Convener of Nagorik Oikkyo Mahmudur Rahman Manna claimed that the country has gone under the shroud of fear, and the government has been doing as it likes. He was speaking at a budget discussion held by Nagorik Oikkyo on June 9 when he said, that is what he found when he came out of jail after two years. He insisted that it will not be allowed to do anymore. Manna called this government unelected which is why it does not have any accountability that led to the submission of such a budget.
Not More Than 30 Seats
BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir insisted that Awami League would not win more than 30 seats if the next election is neutral. He claimed that Awami League has lost the ground under its feet and has become alienated from the people. Mirza Fakhrul said that the ruling party knows it all too well that should it hold the next election under a neutral government, people would give their verdict against this government for all of its misdeeds. On June 7, he said at a function held in Dhakeshwari Mandir and in response to comments made by the AL general secretary that it will become obvious where Awami League stands when the next election is held.
The Fear of Losing Power
BNP vice chairman Khandaker Mabub Hossain is convinced that the government is increasing punishment in speedy trails because it is afraid of losing power. He was speaking at a discussion on June 9 when he said that the Law and Order Disruption (Speedy Trial) Act is an old legislation and it was enacted by BNP in 2002 as a measure to cope with the prevailing situation back then. Hossain said that Awami League had called it a “black law” and boycotted parliament. He said that Awami League is such a party that it can call anything anyway anytime it wants, because what was “black law” then is now being strengthened by increasing punishment to seven years.
“No Choice But to Sleep On the Street”
Rajdhani Unnyayan Kartripakkha evicted BNP standing committee member Moudud Ahmed from his Gulshan house where he lived for nearly four decades. During the eviction drive on June 7, Ahmed told journalists, “You see how they are taking out my things. I have been living in this house for 36 years and this is a glaring example of political vengeance.” The BNP leader further said that the court did not issue an eviction notice and neither did RAJUK, but he was being thrown out of his house because he was an opposition politician. When journalists asked him what he planned to do next, Moudud Ahmed replied that he had no choice but to sleep on the street.
The Year of the People
Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) chairperson Khaleda Zia believes that 2018 will be the year of people. She said all oppressions, persecutions, and injustice would leave the country next year. Zia said it at an Iftar Party organized by Liberal Democratic Party on June 6. She called 2016 the year of bank theft committed by Awami League, because they stole money not only from the state-owned banks but also from the Bangladesh Bank reserves. She added that common people are now afraid of keeping their money in banks. Khaleda Zia also criticized the additional excise duty imposed on bank deposits before saying that nobody knows the outcome of the investigation into the central bank reserve heist.
BNP Orphaned by Its Absence in the Last Election
Ruling AL leader and commerce minister Tofail Ahmed claimed that no matter what BNP say, it will definitely participate in the next elections. He said the party has been hurt by refusing to participate in the last elections, and it has become an orphan. The minister also said that the party has realized its mistake and that is why it will take part in the upcoming elections. He made his remarks at a party workers' meeting held at his residence in Bhola on June 10. He emphasized that the elections will be held in 2019 under the Sheikh Hasina government, and the elections will be conducted by the election commission. Ahmed reiterated that the BNP has no choice but to participate in it.
Awami League to Score a Hat Trick
Ruling Bangladesh Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader said while laying floral wreaths before the portrait of Bangabandhu that his party will win the next election and score a hat trick by forming the government for a third consecutive term. He said it would mean the BNP also would score a hat trick by losing general election for the third time in a row. Quader laid wreaths on June 7 on the anniversary of the Six-Point Day. He argued that BNP would lose the next election because it failed to take to streets after threatening to launch a movement as well as stand beside the distressed people of Haor and the coastal people in the south, who were affected by natural disasters.
Conspirators are Playing the Militancy Game in the Country
National Awami Party chairman and a leading figure of the communist movement in the subcontinent professor Muzaffar Ahmed said in an interview given to a vernacular daily on June 10 that it is important to hold the next general elections with the participation of all political parties. He said the political parties of the country should stay with the politicians and everyone will have to work together to defeat militancy. Ahmed insisted that conspirators are playing militancy game in the country and their goal is to disrupt peace. He said all instances of victory in the world have been achieved with popular support because one cannot go to power if one does not care for people's support.
The Prime Minister is Not a Hypocrite
Agriculture minister Matiya Chowdhury said during a discussion on the supplementary budget in parliament on June 6 that 27 ministries had spent more money than allocated because it was necessary. She said nobody spent that money at his or her will. The minister also said the prime minister does not practice hypocrisy and she did not say it like Khaleda Zia that money is not a problem. Chowdhury added that the prime minister spends every paisa after careful deliberations. Regarding the accusation that the ministers could not spend all the money that was allocated, Matiya Chowdhury said that they could spend all the money if they wanted to, but that is not how our prime minister thinks.