BNP senior leader Dr Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain on Sunday said their party will celebrate the golden jubilee of the country's independence with a year-long programme in 2021, aiming to 'restore the original spirit' of the Liberation War.
"It doesn't need to explain much the current state of democracy, judiciary and the media in the country as all the spirit of the Liberation War are obliterated,” he told a press conference at BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office.
The BNP leader said, "On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of our independence, our main theme will be on restoring Bangladesh's original spirit of the Liberation War. We want to restore that spirit. This will be the main goal and the main objective of BNP on the occasion of the golden jubilee.”
Mosharraf, a BNP standing committee, their party worked out a year-long programme to celebrate the golden jubilee of independence with huge enthusiasm and gaiety in 2021.
The programmes include essay and drawing competitions, painting exhibitions, thematic publications on democracy, human rights, women's empowerment, foreign policy, free-market economy, BNP's role in economic development, workshops, publication of booklets, distribution of leaflets, production of documentaries, cultural programmes, seminars-symposiums and discussions on various nationally important issues and rallies.
Mosharraf said their parties all the city, district and upazila units will also take up various programmes, including discussions and rallies, to celebrate the mega event.
Claiming that BNP is a party of freedom fighters, he said it will work for upholding the spirit of Liberation War by establishing people’s rights and removing inequalities alongside restoring democracy.
“After long 50 years of the country’s independence, democracy has been annihilated only for clinging to power and protecting personal interests. All the achievements of our independence are being destroyed,” the BNP leader observed.
BNP has again resorted to violence, failing to garner people's support. To the party, democracy means distorting the history of Bangladesh's independence.
Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader said this on Sunday while inaugurating a road construction project in Cox's Bazar through video conference.
All parties have the right to carry out peaceful political programs, Quader said.
However, he warned that if any attempt is made to disturb the peace and disrupt daily life, the government will do what is necessary.
If BNP loses any election, it pins the blame on the government and the election commission, Quader said.
"And when BNP wins, the party claims that it could have won more votes had the government not intervened. Also, BNP's role in strengthening democratic institutions has largely fallen short of people's expectations."
Quader, also the road transport and bridges minister, said the 80 kilometer Cox's Bazar-Teknaf marine drive has allowed the visitors to view the sea in all its beautiful glory. "And initiatives have already been taken to expand it."
"Work on the four-lane highway from Cox's Bazar Link Road to Laboni Point would be completed soon, too."
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BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Saturday urged the party leaders and activists to seize the opportunity to make people aware of the “distorted” history of the country’s independence on the eve of its golden jubilee.
"…Ziaur Rahman had initiated the Liberation War (in 1971) by proclaiming the independence of the country. But the history of independence is now being distorted. We’ve to tell the new generation about that distorted history,” he said.
On the occasion of the golden jubilee of independence, the BNP leader said their party must seize the opportunity to reach out to the new generation with the right history and information of the Liberation War through various discussions, publications and documentation.
He made the remarks while speaking at the virtual meeting of BNP’s committee on celebrating the golden jubilee of the country’s independence.
The meeting, held with BNP standing committee member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain in the chair, elaborately discussed the strategies and worked out various programmes to celebrate the golden jubilee throughout the year.
It also discussed the formation of a steering committee and various sub-committees on different matters, including seminar-symposium, management, office, publicity, cultural and media, to celebrate the mega event.
Besides, the meeting decided that BNP will bring out thematic publications, posters and leaflets on the occasion.
“Democracy has ended up in Sheikh Hasina’s authoritarian rule. Sheikh Hasina means now the Constitution and now she’s everything and everything is hers,” he said.
Speaking at a voluntary blood donation programme, the BNP leader said democracy means pluralism and multi-people and multi-opinions.
"In democracy, the words like ‘I’ and ‘my’ are never acceptable. Democracy means ‘our’, ‘us’ and ‘majority’. Democracy does not mean one person’s opinion and one person’s authority. So, what’s now going on here is an authoritarian system which has gone beyond the dictatorship,” Gayeshwar said.
“The country is turning into a heap of destruction under a single-person rule, who has a despotic mentality. Before the ruination of the country, you’ve to be active and take to the streets for restoring democracy by removing autocracy,” the BNP leader said.
Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal arranged the programme on the ground floor of BNP’s Nayapaltan central office, marking party acting chairman Tarique Rahman’s 56th birth anniversary.
Gayeshwar, a BNP standing committee member, greeted Tarique on his birthday and wished him good health and wellbeing.
He alleged that their party acting chairman has long been staying in London for receiving treatment as he was subjected to both the physical and mental tortures.
The BNP leader urged the party leaders and activists, including that of Chhatra Dal, to work sincerely as per people’s hopes and aspirations and thus ensure a congenial atmosphere for the safe homecoming of Tarique.
He also called upon the Chhatra Dal leaders and activists to get ready to shed blood on the streets for waging a strong movement like 1971 one to free the nation from ‘misrule’ and ‘restore’ democracy in the country.
Tarique was born on November 20, 1965 in Bogura. On September 11, 2008, he went to London for treatment, and he has been living with his family there since then.
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BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Friday alleged that opposition leaders and activists are being made disappeared to stop the criticisms of the government for its 'misdeeds'.
"The government has been in power for the last one decade by introducing a culture of enforced disappearance. Since they’ve now become isolated from people, they’re torturing people by continuing the culture of enforced disappearance, spreading fear and establishing a reign of terror,” he said.
Speaking at a virtual press conference, the BNP leader said, “The government’s main motive behind this is to stop the criticisms of its misdeeds. The government is spreading panic among its dissidents and making them disappeared. This’s now happening here, denting Bangladesh’s image seriously.”
Fakhrul alleged that their party’s five leaders--Leon Haque, Mamun Parvez Tanmoy, Towhidul Islam Hasib, Ferdous Majumder Masum and Selim Mia--remained missing since they were picked up by 'plainclothes policemen' from different places recently.
He said police have been denying reports of detaining the BNP leaders and saying that they do not have any information about the missing BNP men. “The families of those who have gone missing are very anxious and we’re also worried about it."
The BNP leader said it is the full responsibility of the government to trace out if anyone goes missing. “It’s unimaginable that the plainclothes police are picking up the people who come out of the High Court after securing bail.”
Fakhrul said it is now the reality that the government has become not only isolated from people, but also politically bankrupt. “They (govt) have politicised all the state institutions only to cling to power. I call upon the government to immediately find out our missing leaders and activists.”
He also demanded the government release those who have been arrested on ‘false’ charges and withdraw the ‘false’ cases filed against them.
The BNP leader alleged that the 'government’s agents torched several vehicles' in the city on November 12 last as part of their old game to eliminate BNP from politics and thus cement the one-party rule.