Dhaka, July 13 (UNB) – BNP on Saturday asked its leaders and activists to stand beside flood-hit people at different parts of the country with relief materials.
Party secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir came up with the instruction at a press briefing after a meeting its standing committee members at BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office.
“Our standing committee voiced deep concern over the flood caused by incessant rain and onrush of water from India. We call upon our party leaders and activists at all levels to stand beside the flood-affected people,” he said.
Fakhrul said their meeting has decided to make active the party’s central committee on relief and send relief materials to the flood-hit areas.
The overall flood situation in northern and northeastern districts has deteriorated as heavy rains and onrush of water from the upstream India continued on Saturday.
Thousands of people remained marooned in the flood-affected districts while shortage of food and drinking water has mounted the woes of the victims.
Fakhrul said their meeting viewed that the government has failed to take any effective step for resolving the Rohingya crisis which is badly affecting the country’s economy.
“We had a hope that a positive outcome would come from the Prime Minister’s visit to China. But we don’t see any good response from China as the country is rigid on its same stance. We didn’t find any concrete assurance from the China authorities in this regard,” he added.
He said their meeting also expressed worry as the government’s financial management system, especially the banking one, has badly collapsed. “Bangladesh Bank shut down People's Leasing and Financial Services Limited three days back without repaying Tk 236 crore of depositors. It’s an unprecedented incident,” the BNP leader observed.
“We think this is a sign of the shattered banking system. We strongly condemn the shutting down of People’s Leasing and Financial Company unilaterally by the Bangladesh Bank without repaying depositors’ money and making alternative job arrangements for its officials and employees,” he said.
Fakhrul said their party will announce programmes demanding restoration of discipline in the banking sector and the capital market.
Besides, he said, their party will soon start holding rallies in different divisions demanding their Chairperson Khaleda Zia’s release.
As per the schedule they have so far finalised, the BNP leader said their first rally will be held in Barishal on July 18 then then in Chattogram on July 20 and in Khulna on July 25. “We hope to hold rallies in all the divisional cities by July 30.”
He said their chairperson’s health condition did not improve but deteriorated though she has long been undergoing treatment at the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University Hospital.
Fakhrul demanded the government immediately release Khaleda Zia and ensure proper treatment of her.
Apart from Fakhrul, BNP standing committee members Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain, Moudud Ahmed, Jamiruddin Sircar, Mirza Abbas, Gayeshwar Chandra Roy, Dr Abdul Moyeen Khan, Nazrul Islam Khan, Amir Khosru Mahmud Chowdhury and Selima Rahman attended the meeting.
Dhaka, July 12 (UNB) – BNP standing committee member Selima Rahman on Friday alleged that rape and other crimes have marked a sharp rise in the country for lack of enforcement of law since the government is regulating the judiciary.
“The incidents of rape have turned acute as the government has completely shattered the judiciary. From a child to an octogenarian is not getting rid of it. Children now have no security,” she said.
The BNP leader further said, “Criminal acts are growing for lack of an independent judiciary, and justice. No judge can now deliver verdict neutrally since the judiciary is now being controlled by the Prime Minister’s Office.”
Selima made the remarks while speaking at the council of Bangladesh Chhatra Mission, the student body of Labour Party, at the Jatiya Press Club.
She said a Pabna court recently gave an ‘absurd’ verdict sentencing nine people to death and jailing 25 others for life in a case over an incident happened 25 years back.
“The court gave capital punishment for an incident where even no one was injured. Who will we trust? We count on judges for justice, but what is going on in the name of trial?” the BNP leader questioned.
She alleged that the government is imposing a big burden of tax and VAT on people and cutting their pockets by hiking the gas price.
Selima criticised Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for her comment that gas tariff has been increased for the sake of country’s development, saying the government must ensure the security of people and their welfare.
“We also want the country to be developed. But people’s development can’t be left for infrastructural development,” she observed.
The BNP leader said it is the responsibility of the state to ensure people’s fundamental rights like food, clothing, shelter and security. “The government is indifferent to people’s these rights since it has been in power without people’s mandate.”
Selima came down hard on Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader for asking BNP to free Khaleda through a movement if the party is brave enough. “Such tall talks don’t suit you. You wouldn’t have arranged the national election at the night of December 29 had you been so much courageous.”
She alleged that the ruling party leaders are making unguarded remarks as they have got isolated from people.
The BNP leader also accused the government of trying to kill ailing Khaleda Zia in jail as it fears her popularity.
She called upon the people of all walks of life to get united to have Khaleda freed from jail though a strong movement.
Dhaka, July 10 (UNB) – BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Wednesday urged his party colleagues to find out effective ways based on political reality to defeat the ruling party with the strength of people’s unity.
“The world politics has changed a lot. Just think those who had killed Mahatma Gandhi in India are now in power. This is the reality. We must now realise this change in world politics, and work out ways to reach our desired goal,” he said.
The BNP leader came up with the remarks while speaking at a discussion at the Jatiya Press Club marking Mashiur Rahman Jadu Mia’s 98th birth anniversary.
He urged BNP leaders and activists not to talk about disappointment. “We’ll surely release our leader (Khaleda), and democracy will be restored with her release from jail.”
Fakhrul called upon all to get united to free people from ‘misrule’ and take the country forward ousting the current government.
He said their alliance Jatiya Oikyafront will not get affected much though Kader Siddiqui-led Krishak Sramik Janata League (KSJL) has quit the coalition.
The BNP leader said it is very tough to fight against an autocratic and fascist government. “We tried to defeat this monster by forming the Jatiya Oikyafront alongside the 20-party through the election. We failed to do so, but it doesn’t mean we’re finished.”
He said they will move forward with new strategy uniting people to fulfill their hopes and aspirations.
Dhaka, July 10 (UNB) – Information Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud on Wednesday said BNP Chairperson Khaleda is a big threat to the country’s politics as her party does not believe in people’s welfare.
“The politics is for the welfare of the common people, not for making people suffer, but BNP had made people hostage for a long time enforcing [road] blockades and killed many people with petrol bombs and arson attacks,” he said.
The minister further said, “He (Fakhrul) said democracy is dysfunctional without the release of Khaleda Zia. I would like to say Begum Khaleda Zia is a serious threat to politics.”
Dr Hasan came up with the remarks while unveiling the cover of a book titled ‘Sangbadikota Raat Biraate’ written by Mahfuzur Rahman, Editor of United News of Bangladesh (UNB), at the Jatiya Press Club.
He said the current government always welcomes criticism as it wants to establish a democratic society based on logic and argument. “But Khaleda Zia and her party don’t believe it, and they exposed it through the August-21 grenade attack and their efforts to divert the brutal incident to a different direction.”
The minister came down hard on BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir for his remark that the ruling party is plundering public money in the name of development urging him to see his own face in the mirror.
He said around 1.5 crore people in the country have elevated to the middle class from the lower class over the last 10 years while poverty rate brought down to 20 percent from 41 percent and Bangladesh turned into a middle-income country.
“But, these achievements and development create heart burn to our opponents as they had failed to do so. The country had become champion in corruption for the five straight years when they had been in power. So, I would like to tell Mr Fakhrul to see your own face in the mirror. Your comments are applicable to you,” Dr Hasan added.
The minister said different parliamentary standing committees were reconstituted on Tuesday to incorporate the opposition MPs though they are very few in numbers as part of the government’s efforts to make parliament more vibrant and functional.
The minister thanked the UNB editor for writing a book on journalism based on his vast experience. “I hope journalists and the students and the profession as a whole will be benefited from the book.”
Dhaka University’s ex-vice chancellor Professor AAMS Arefin Siddique, DU Professor Mofizur Rahman, JPC President Saiful Alam, Prime Minister’s speech writer Nazrul Islam, UNB editor Mahfuzur Rahman and publisher of the book Gafur Hossain, among others spoke at the programme held with DU’s Mass Communication and Journalism Department Hononary Professor Dr Shakhawat Ali Khan in the chair.
Dhaka, July 9 (UNB) – Gonoforum general secretary Reza Kibria on Tuesday said their party will intensify its anti-government role both in parliament and outside.
“Gonoforum is a party of people. We stand here in protest against the increase in gas price. We’ll oppose this government’s all unfair and repressive acts where we can. We’ll do it even if we get an inch of space,” he said.
Speaking at a protest rally, Reza Kibria further said, “We’ll oppose the government in parliament, and outside, including on the streets, in cities and villages.”
Gonoforum arranged the programme in front of the Jatiya Press Club protesting the recent gas-price hike decision.
The Gonoforum general secretary alleged that the government took the anti-mass decision of raising the gas prices since it was not elected by people. “They (govt) are taking away Tk 8,000 crore from our pockets by increasing the tariffs of gas and electricity.”
Reza Kibria, an economist and son of slain former Awami League Finance Minister Shah AMS Kibria, said people would not have to give Tk 8,000 crore from their pockets had huge amount of money not been plundered from different government projects.”
He also said the government needs to check plundering of public money instead of hiking the tariffs of utility services. “The government’s every step is exposing its corruption and incapability and failure to run the country.”
Gonoforum executive president Subrata Chowdhury criticised the government for what he said rise in the incidents of killing, rape and repression. “Bangladesh is now being identified as a country of rapists. “Children and women are killed and raped while the minorities are repressed here.”
He said some people ’usurped’ parliament by ‘vote robbery’, and placed an anti-people budget.
Subrata Chowdhury said people are going through immense sufferings as the prices of essentials continue to increase. “People now no longer want to see (Sheikh Hasina) in power.”
Later, the party brought out a precession registering its protest against the hike of gas tariff.