Dhaka, Dec 19 (UNB) - Awami League President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday reiterated that she does not want to go to power by any means which may destabilise the present peaceful situation in the country.
"I don't have any desire to go to power by any means possible …if we can get elected by people’s vote then it’s Alhamdullillah. If we can’t retain power, there is no problem. Let peace prevail in the country," she said.
Sheikh Hasina said this while addressing the Businessmen Conference titled 'Bangladesh towards peace and prosperity' at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC) organised by the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI).
She said her party wants to see a peaceful election in the country as many political parties are contesting the 11th general election of the country.
The AL president said a beautiful and peaceful situation prevailing in the country. "Let the election be held maintaining this peaceful atmosphere, the party which will get the people's mandate will be there in power," she said.
The Prime Minister said she wanted the people of the country to cast their votes peacefully and choose their desired government. "Let that environment prevail in the country… I do want that."
Hasina mentioned if the peaceful situation prevails in the country the country will advance further.
She sought support from the businesses community for the 'Boat' to maintain the pace of development and finish the incomplete development projects to make the country developed and prosperous one.
"We’ve taken so many projects including some mega projects, we need more time to complete those," Hasina said.
Mentioning the private sector as the driving force of the economy, she said the private sector will be the key player while the government will act as the facilitator.
Hasina said the drive against militancy, terrorism and drugs will continue while the government will show zero tolerance against corruption.
Former FBCCI presidents Mahbubur Rahman, Salman F Rahman, Mir Nasir Hossain and AK Azad, and Rokeya Afzal Rahman, Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Chamber (MCCI) president Nihat Kabir, Bangladesh Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) president Siddiqur Rahman, Alhaj Sufi M Mizanur Rahman, Incepta Pharmaceuticals managing director Abdul Muktadir, ACI chairman Anis Ud Dowla, GP CEO Michael Foley, managing director of Microsoft Bangladesh Sonia Bashir Kabir, City Group chairman Fazlur Rahman and Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services BASIS) president Syed Almas Kabir also spoke at the programme .
It was also addressed by oresident of Leather Goods And Footwear Manufacturer & Exporter’s Association of Bangladesh (LFMEAB) Saiful Islam, Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) Abul kashem khan, Bashundhara Group chairman Ahmed akbar sobhan, Berger Paits managing director Rupali Chowdhury, Mohammadi Group managing director Rubana Haq, AKM Selim Osman, MP, Former president of BGMEA Engineer Kutub Uddin Ahmed , Tipu Munshi, MP, former BGMEA president Atiqul Islam, Anwar Group managing director Manowar Hossain, Abdul Momen Sugar Refinery chairman Mainuddin Momen, BSRM GRoup chairman Ali Hossain Akbar FCA, former BGMEA president Anwarul Alam Chowdhury Parvez, Dokan Malik Samity President Helal Uddin and Captain Anisur Rahman Sinha of Opex Group. FBCCI president Md. Shafiul Islam (Mohiuddin) moderated it.
Cumilla, Dec 19 (UNB) – BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Wednesday called upon voters to ensure the victory of ‘Sheaf of Paddy’ through a ‘vote revolution’ on December 30 to free Khaleda Zia from jail and ‘restore’ democracy.
“Cast your votes for the ‘Sheaf of Paddy’ to bring democracy back, free Khaleda Zia and ensure Tarique Rahman’s homecoming,” he said.
The BNP leader came up with the call at a wayside rally at Daudkandi on his way to Chandina and Soagazi here to carry out electioneering in favour of the candidates of their party and alliance partners.
Fakhrul called upon people to go to polling stations braving all the obstacles and intimidations. “Stage a vote revolution on December 30…we’ll surely succeed.”
The BNP leader sought votes for BNP’s candidate for Cumilla-1 and Cumilla-2 seats Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain to ensure his victory.
Later speaking at a rally at Chandina’s Dr Inam Ahmed College ground, Fakhrul urged people to go to polling stations in groups on the election day to cast their votes in favour of ‘Sheaf of Paddy’ and foil any attempt to rig votes.
“Your one vote can ensure Khaleda Zia’s release and restore democracy. Go to polling stations in groups to cast your votes and stay there till the end of counting. Don’t leave the voting centres under any circumstance,” he told the audience.
The BNP leader also called upon people to ensure the victory of Cumilla-7 candidate Redwan Ahmed through casting their votes for him.
He said a ‘fake’ government and the Election Commission (EC) are working together to annihilate democracy. “We would like to say people won’t accept it.”
Fakhrul alleged that the EC is not creating a level-playing field as it is not working neutrally. “The election is going to turn into a farce. The country’s people can understand everything and I believe all plots and evil plans will be foiled with people’s united efforts.”
The BNP leader also addressed a rally at Soagazi Old Helipad field and got emotional as he sought votes for jailed BNP candidate for Cumilla-10 Monirul Haque Chowdhury.
Before Fakhrul, Monirul’s daughter and Dhaka University teacher Dr Chowdhury Saima Ferdous also sought votes for her father in tears, creating an emotional scenario.
Later, speaking at the rally, Fakhrul said, “My daughter Saima was not supposed to address the rally, but she was forced to come here for her father. I beg votes to you for my friend Monirul Haque Chowdhury and for our leader Khaleda Zia.”
“Our many young leaders and activists have to pull rickshaw and work as hawkers in Dhaka as they can’t stay in their areas in the face of false cases. Were these our hopes and aspirations and dream during the Liberation War? Awami League has shattered our all dreams of independence,” a weeping Fakhrul said.
Speaking at the programme, Krishak Sramik Janata League President Abdul Kader Siddiqui said people will get freed from Awami League’s misrule on December 30.
He urged people not to get frightened over the arrest and repression, but to go to polling stations braving all barriers to ensure the victory of ‘Sheaf of ‘Paddy.
Earlier, Fakhrul started his journey for Cumilla from BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office in the capital around 10am to conduct election campaign.
Dhaka, Dec 19 (UNB) - Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda on Wednesday asked the officials to be involved in the announcement of election results to remain cautious in performing their duties as one mistake can create a big disorder.
“Be careful so that not a single mistake can occur -- neither in vote counting nor announcement of results,” the CEC told the election officials.
K M Nurul Huda came up with the directive while speaking at a training session on Election Management System (EMS), Candidate Information Management System (CIMS) and Result Management System (RMS) at Nirbachan Bhaban in the morning.
Nurul Huda said, “You’ve to receive the training properly and prove it in the field through performing your duties flawlessly as just one mistake can create a big disorder.”
The CEC went on to say, “Don’t allow one mistake to thwart the election process. Technical persons are very important in the election process as results from all the polling centres in the country will come through the software. If there’s any fault, the election results might be changed,” he said.
“You’ve to apply your full capacity and merit and work hard to ensure a fair election,” he urged the officials.
The CEC said the Commission is amazed to see the public interest centering the election and the festive mood that is prevailing across the country. “We’ve to remain alert so that the interest and confidence of people are not affected by our mistakes.”
The Commission, Huda said, is taking into consideration the suggestions made by political parties and their candidates.
Tangail, Dec 19 (UNB) – Former Awami League minister Abdul Latif Siddiqui was admitted to Tangail General Hospital after he fell sick on Wednesday while continuing fast unto death protesting an attack on his motorcade during electioneering.
Demanding the withdrawal of the officer-in-charge of Kalihati Police Station and immediate arrest of those attacked his motorcade, the expelled AL leader who is contesting the election as an independent candidate from Tangail-4 (Kalihati) constituency, went on hunger strike on December 16.
He fell sick on Tuesday night while continuing his demonstration in front of the office of the Returning Officer and Deputy Commissioner of Tangail Shahidul Islam for the second consecutive day, braving cold and rain.
As his condition deteriorated, he was admitted to Tangail General Hospital around 9am Wednesday, reports UNB Tangail Correspondent from the spot.
Latif Siddiqui came under attack allegedly by the supporters of a local MP-backed union parishad chairman at Soratail in Kalihati upazila that left 20 people injured.
Dhaka, Dec 18 (UNB) - A total of 53 BNP men were sued while 15 arrested in Bogura, Munshiganj and Khulna districts on Tuesday.
In Bogura, a case was filed against 34 BNP members including convener of Shibganj upazila unit and 15 unnamed people on charge of attacking the convoy of Awami League candidate of Bogura–2 constituency Shariful Islam Jinnah during electioneering.
Sanaullah Sana, joint convener of Juba Sanghati upazila unit, filed the case over the attack that was launched in Bhaiyerpukur area of Shibganj upazila around 9:30 pm on Monday night.
In Munshiganj, another 19 BNP members were sued for allegedly torching an election camp of ruling party at Palgaon in Louhajang upazila.
Juba League president Md Alamgir Kabir filed the case accusing 19 BNP men and 7-8 unnamed people.
Officer-in-charge of Louhajang Police Station also held three BNP men in this regard.
In Khulna, BNP candidate of Khulna–3 constituency Rokibul Islam Bakul alleged that police detained 12 BNP men on Tuesday without filing any case.
He also submitted a memorandum to the returning officer seeking remedy of the the matter.
He said Awami League and Chhatra League activists persistently attacking and threatening the BNP supporters while, on the other hand, police have been arresting local leaders of BNP by lodging fake cases.
Meanwhile, in Barishal, police arrested 12 leaders of Jamaat-e-Islami during drives in different areas in the city.
They also seized books on militancy and leaflets from their procession.