BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Tuesday alleged that the warrants issued for the arrest of BNP Acting Chairman Tarique Rahman and his wife Dr Zubaida Rahman was part of the government’s political vengeance.
Speaking at a press conference at the BNP Chairperson’s Gulshan office, he also said the government has been using ‘false’ cases as a political weapon to suppress the opposition and create a ground for depoliticisation in the country.
“There is no basis in the case in which the arrest warrants were issued against our leader Tarique Rahman and Dr Zubaida Rahman. The Awami League government filed the case out of political vengeance as an attempt to keep them away from Bangladesh and politics,” the BNP leader said.
He condemned the issuance of arrest warrants and demanded the immediate withdrawal of the warrants and the case.
Earlier in the day, a Dhaka court issued warrants for the arrest of Tarique and Zubaida in a graft case filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).
Dhaka Metropolitan Senior Special Judge Md Asaduzzaman court passed the order after taking the chargesheet against them into cognisance.
Fakhrul said the government has already kept the BNP Chairperson under house arrest by convicting her in ‘false’ cases only due to political vengeance." Our Acting Chairman Tarique Rahman is being forced to stay abroad using false cases. The case against Zubaida, a professional and talented physician, was filed for political reasons since she is the daughter-in-law of the Zia family.”
In response to a question, he said though Zubaida is a non-political professional the arrest warrant was issued against her only because of the government’s fear of the Zia family.
The BNP leader alleged that the government has been trying to eliminate BNP and Zia family from politics over the 14 years through various repressive and suppressive acts, and laws and by using law enforcers.
He warned the government that its all efforts to weaken BNP will go in vain since the country’s people are with the party. “Despite so much torture, BNP is waking up like a phoenix. There’s no way to prevent the emergence of BNP as it’s a party of people.”
No food stock to face emergency
Fakhrul said their standing committee meeting on Monday elaborately discussed the Prime Minister’s recent remark about a possible famine in the next year. “Our meeting felt that the PM’s statement has clearly manifested that the government has failed to stockpile food to face exigency.
He said the BNP policymakers expressed deep concern as the import of food grains has decreased by about 37 percent in the last four months.
“The country’s food security is now under an extreme threat due to the unprecedented corruption, indifference and incompetence of the Food Ministry and the Food Department of the government. At the same time due to corruption, unnecessary spending on different projects and dollar shortages are disrupting imports,” the BNP leader observed.
He also bemoaned that the country’s economic crisis is deepening because of the unethical withdrawal of dollars from reserves and siphoning off 7/8 billion dollars every year through illegal channels like hundi.
Fakhrul also expressed concern over the increase in the production cost of food grains caused by the increase in the price of fertilisers, seeds and disruption of irrigation operations across the country and for lack of electricity and diesel.