Ruling Awami League will not entertain any condition set by BNP to make the party join the upcoming national election, AL insiders said.
“It does not matter whether BNP participates in the polls or not, the election will be held in line with the constitution,” they said, adding that BNP must join the polls to save its registration with the Election Commission.
BNP, which remains out of parliament for boycotting the last parliamentary election, has been asking the government to arrange the polls under a neutral administration.
BNP leaders have now set a new condition that says the party will not contest the polls if Khaleda Zia is not released from jail.
In reaction to BNP’s latest demand, AL general secretary Obaidul Quader on Saturday said BNP’s absence from the polls will not cause any harm to the democratic process.
“But we want them in the race. We do not want to be trapped in a one-sided election. If the BNP skips the polls, the election will be held with the participation of other parties,” he said.
AL insiders said the ruling party wants BNP to participation in the polls, but not a single condition will be entertained for their participation in the polls.
If they want to skip the polls this time too, the ruling party will encourage other registered political parties to participate in the polls, they said.
It has been learnt that the ruling camp has taken a policy to encourage the small political parties to contest the polls to establish a participatory polls without BNP.
AL senior leaders said that as people are already habituated with the absence of BNP, they would not get surprised to have the next polls without the party.
The next parliamentary election is expected to be held in December under the administration of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
As per the Article 123 (3) (a) of the constitution, the next parliamentary election should be held within 90 days before the dissolution of the 10th parliament.
The 10th parliament sat on January 29 in 2014 after the January 5 general election. It means that the election should be held between October 31, 2018, and January 28, 2019.
The constitution also mentions that the prime minister will remain in the post during the national polls and the outgoing premier will hand over power to the next prime minister-elect.