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Hasina worries as BNP fighting a battle for 'existence'

  • Sun Online Desk
  • 8th November, 2021 09:40:44 AM
  • Print news
Hasina worries as BNP fighting a battle for 'existence'

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday expressed concern as Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) is fighting a battle for its 'existence' as a political party.

“How can a party survive when it’s led by a person who’s convicted for arms smuggling for the August 21 grenade attack and siphoning off orphans’ money?” she questioned.

Sheikh Hasina, also the president of the ruling Awami League, posed the question while addressing a civic reception accorded to her at Queen Elizabeth Centre in London. She joined the programme virtually from her place of residence in London.

She said a convicted criminal in a killing case, arms smuggling and corruption case, and a fugitive, is now at the helm of a political party.

The Prime Minister said Khaleda Zia’s sons are corrupt, which was dug out by US’ FBI and also in Singapore. “We’ve been able to bring back some smuggled money from abroad,” she said.

They (Khaleda and her sons) do not have any patriotism as they treat power as a tool of pleasure and place for looting, Hasina said, referring to the lavish lifestyle of Tarique Rahman in London questioning his source of income. “Awami League always stands beside people and thinks about the welfare of people,” she said.

After the assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Hasina said, the people of Bangladesh had plunged into an era of darkness. “But when Awami League came to power, people started availing of services from the government.”

The Prime Minister recalled that she had started moving the country’s wheels towards prosperity after forming the government in 1996. “Today, Bangladesh doesn’t live on begging! Today Bangladesh has learned to stand on its own feet. Some 90 percent financing of our development projects comes from our own resources. We’ve attained that capability,” she said.

Talking about Padma Bridge, Hasina said a vested quarter tried to stigmatise the government, especially the Prime Minister and her family members linking them to corruption cases. “I threw a challenge to the World Bank. They’ve failed to prove that. There was no corruption in Padma Bridge,” she said.

Hasina said Awami League does not come to power to indulge in corruption and make their fortunes. “We ‘re here to build the fate of people, and that’s our aim, and we’re working to materialise that aim.”

She urged the expatriate Bangladeshis to invest in the 100 economic zones that are being constructed across the country. “If you (expatriates) want to invest, you’ll get special facilities. We’ll ensure that.”

Hasina said the government has taken steps to solve the problems of expatriates, and urged them to inform her about investment in Bangladesh and she will solve every problem.

She said the government will pave the way so that Bangladeshis could invest in other countries as well.

UK Awami League president Sultan Mahmud Sharif presided over the programme.