Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday warned that action will be taken against quota reform demonstrators if they create any kind of anarchy in the name of movement.
“Any kind of anarchy in the name of movement for quota reforms will not be tolerated,” the premier said while delivering her valedictory speech in parliament.“It can in no way be an act of students to vandalise and loot the residence of the Dhaka University vice-chancellor,” Sheikh Hasina told the House.
Amid a fresh round of movement for reform of the quota system in government jobs, law enforcers have recently nabbed some demonstrators and put them on remand.
In her speech, Leader of the Opposition in Parliament Raushan Ershad urged the premier to consider the demand of the demonstrating students sympathetically.
“Students are in the dark about the government stance on the quota reform. They have been demonstrating to realise their demand. As they are our children, they will make demands. They will have to be provided with jobs,” she said.
The premier said those who attacked the residence of the VC, are being arrested.
“The attackers are being arrested. Those who carried out the attack won’t be spared. Investigation is on and many have already admitted to the offence. They won’t be released despite movement. Steps must be taken against them,” she said.Sheikh Hasina also mentioned that the attackers of the DU VC’s residence are being detected through the footage captured in the close-circuit camera.
The day’s business began at 3:00pm with Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury in the chair.
About the movement of the students, the premier said the demonstrators are not clearly saying what they actually want.
Amid the countrywide movement of general students, the Leader of the House on April 11 in parliament announced that there will be no quota in government jobs.
At present, there are some 56 per cent quota in government jobs. Of them, family members of freedom fighters enjoy 30 per cent while 10 per cent each for women and under-privileged districts, five per cent for people with minority and one per cent for the people with disability.
Students and job seekers have been staging demonstrations across the country to press for reform of the quota system in government jobs.
The premier said there had been a High Court verdict on the quota of freedom fighters.
“We cannot violate the HC verdict. If we do it, I have to face the charge of contempt of the court,” she added.
“We have already formed a committee headed by the cabinet secretary. They (demonstrators) should wait for the suggestions of the committee,” the premier said.
About the students’ threat of boycotting classes and examinations, she said if the students do so, they will again face session jam which has been removed by the present government.
A section of DU students had already been boycotting classes and exams as law enforcing agencies picked up top leaders of the quota reformists.
Seeking votes for the ‘boat’ symbol in next national polls, Sheikh Hasina said people voted them to power in 2008 and 2014 to serve them.
“People are now living in peace. You have to remain alert so that no evil quarter can assume office to snatch the peace of the people,” the premier said.
“The next election is approaching. If they cast votes again for us, the pace of ongoing development activities will continue,” she said, adding that her government will turn the country a developed one by 2041.
Sheikh Hasina also called upon all the political parties to participate in the next parliamentary elections. “I hope all parties will participate in the next polls,” she said.