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.