After a seven-hour mass-hunger strike on Saturday, BNP has decided to hold rallies across the country, including the capital, on Monday, demanding the immediate release of 'critically' ill Khaleda Zia for better treatment abroad.
Party Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir announced the programme while concluding their hunger-strike programme in front of BNP’s Nayapaltan central office.
In the capital, he said, the programme will be held in front of the Jatiya Press Club at 10am.
“We’ll come up with the same demand in the rallies. If our demand is not met by the time, we’ll announce more programmes and free her and ensure her treatment abroad,” Fakhrul said.
Later, the BNP leaders broke the hunger strike by sipping water offered by Dhaka University ex-Vice-chancellor Prof Anwar Ullah Chowdhury around 4pm.
As part of a countrywide programme, hundreds of leaders and activists of the party and its associate bodies began the hunger strike in front of their Nayapaltan central office at 9am, demanding Khaleda Zia be allowed to go abroad for advanced treatment.
Several thousand BNP leaders and activists joined the programme.
On Thursday, Mirza Fakhrul announced the programme at a press conference at BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office.
The programme was also in all metropolitan cities and district towns peacefully, except a few places.
Khaleda, a 76-year-old former prime minister, was readmitted to Evercare Hospital on 13 November, six days after she had returned home from the hospital.
The BNP chief's physicians said she has been suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, ophthalmological and dental complications.
They also said Khaleda needs advanced treatment abroad immediately as she is also suffering from critical cardiac, kidney problems while her blood sugar is out of control and hemoglobin level in her blood has dropped.
On behalf of the family, Khaleda's younger brother, Shamim Iskander, submitted an application to the Home Ministry on 11 November urging the government to allow her to go abroad for better treatment.
BNP lawmakers are set to form human chain in front of South Plaza of Jatiya Sangsad in Manik Mia Avenue at 11am on Sunday to press home their demand to allow party chief Khaleda Zia to go abroad for better treatment.
However, Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Anisul Huq said the government will consider Khaleda Zia’s appeal if she makes a fresh petition after returning to jail.