Amid growing disappointment among leaders and activists of BNP over the debacle it faced in the 11th parliamentary polls and the failure in waging any effective movement to free party chief Khaleda Zia from jail, BNP men are deserting the party.
Sources said a number of BNP leaders and activists have already left the party and many are going to follow them.BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia is in jail for over a year and the party’s acting chairman Tarique Rahman has long been staying in London.
Only a few senior leaders led by the party secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir are running the party affairs but cannot energise it.
Asked about the exit of party leaders and activists recently, BNP standing committee member Mahbubur Rahman told the daily sun on Monday, “Maybe they are leaving the party due to frustration. But I hope they will come back.”
BNP standing committee member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain said the party leadership is trying to invigorate the party and bring back morale among the leaders and activists.
“We are on the way to revamp the party. If we can be organisationally strong, morale will automatically come back,” he told the daily sun.
BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir at several recent programmes said they are now reorganising the party to strengthen it from inside.Insiders said that amid pressure from the party leaders and activists at the grass-roots level, BNP is restructuring its different units, front and associate organisations, but the process is moving very slowly.
The party has already formed new convening committees of its professional bodies and front organisations.
BNP grass-roots leaders and activists are blaming the central command for the party’s failure in countering political strategies of the ruling Awami League.
They are also blaming the central leaders for the party’s failure in waging any effective movement to secure the release of Khaleda Zia from jail and to realise the demand for a fresh general election under a non-party government.
Pointing at Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, BNP chairperson’s adviser Zainul Abedin Farroque recently at a ‘mass hearing’ of Jatiya Oikya Front said: “I can forget everything what happened in the election, but I can’t forget that you are not announcing any programme to free our mother (Khaleda Zia). I would like to humbly tell our secretary general that we can’t tolerate such inaction anymore.”
BNP insiders said the party men got frustrated and see no ray of hope while a number of the party leaders and activists from grassroots to central are leaving the party and the list is getting bigger day by day.
BNP assistant finance secretary Shahabuddin Ahmed has resigned from all posts of the party citing physical and family problems. Shahabuddin Ahmed, also vice president of Dhaka north city unit of BNP, sent his resignation letter to party secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Saturday.
Rangpur sadar upazila unit BNP joint general secretary Sirajul Islam Lavlu on Monday left the party and joined Jatiya Party of HM Ershad at a function at Ershad’s Banani office in the capital.
BNP leader Ali Asgar Lobi who owned Dhaka’s Hawa Bhaban — once known to be the epicentre of all BNP politics — has resigned from the party central executive committee. Lobi, a former BNP lawmaker from Khulna-2 constituency, sent his resignation letter to the party’s secretary general on January 24.
A number of BNP district and upazila level and most of the central leaders and some senior leaders have already become inactive in the party, BNP insiders said.
The BNP already has expelled around 150 upazila and district level leaders for participating in the upazila Parishad elections defying the party’s decision to boycott it. Another 150 leaders are also going to participate in the upazila elections defying the party decision, BNP sources said.
Meanwhile, the worst defeat of Jatityatabadi Chhatra Dal candidates in the recently held DUCSU election also has made the party men frustrated across the country, the sources added.