Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) is trying to revitalise its party men, who have become frustrated, through holding programmes on different issues across the country, party insiders said.
“Definitely, we are holding our programmes to rejuvenate the party men and make them ready for the next time. Without programmes, party will become paralysed,” BNP standing committee member Jamiruddin Sircar told the Daily Sun.The opposition party is now crippled by manifold problems. It has been passing through a critical time as it has been staying away from power for long. Besides, party chairperson Khaleda Zia has been convicted of corruption while its second-in-command and acting Chairman Tarique Rahman is not returning home from London.
Party-nominated candidates except very few of them have been defeated in all local government polls, including city Corporation, upazila parishad and municipalities, across the country which is another major cause behind frustration of the party men.
The party has been trying to strengthen and reorganise its units, front and associate organisations but cannot successfully complete the task in last around a decade.
Currently, BNP is facing serious internal conflict and lack of courageous and dedicated leadership to strengthen the organisation and to wage any strong-anti-government movement, party insiders said.
They also cannot wage any strong movement to realise their demands, including release of party chairperson Khaleda Zia from jail, withdrawal of cases filed against the party leaders, restoration of non-party caretaker government system and holding a general election under an election time non-party administration, the sources added.
Under the circumstances, the opposition party has failed to wage any strong movement even on any public issue in the country, but the party has started taking to the streets and staging demonstration programmes on different issues after normalisation of the coronavirus pandemic.Talking to the Daily Sun, BNP vice-chairman Mohammad Shahjahan said, “We are expressing our solidarity with people through holding our programmes. As a political party, it is our duty. I hope the day is not far away when the incumbent Awami League government will fall.”
A few central leaders said the BNP is now trying to forge a greater unity of opposition political parties of the country to take to street unitedly on different issues and to draw people’s participation in their demonstration programmes.
The BNP brought allegations of rigging and irregularities in the local government elections and recently announced protest rallies in metropolitan cities demanding free, fair and neutral elections.
The party was scheduled to hold a rally in Chattogram on February 13 but it postponed the programme while the rally was held in Barishal on February 18. The rally will be held in Khulna on February 27, in Rajshahi on March 1, in Dhaka North on March 3 and in Dhaka South on March 4.
The party staged demonstrations across the country on Wednesday in protest against the move to remove BNP founder Ziaur Rahman's gallantry title 'Bir Uttam'.
Speaking at the same programme in the capital on the same day, the BNP leaders threatened to wage a 'one-point' movement to oust the current Awami League government.
"The way they indulged in vote robbery in the polls to different city corporations and municipalities, we can't allow this government to hold any other election. We won't give any one anymore chance to stay in power through vote robbery," said BNP chairperson's adviser Amanullah Aman at the protest rally in front of the Jatiya Press Club.
He said, "We all must take to the streets in unison and join a one-point movement to establish people's right to vote and a pro-people government though a credible election under a neutral and non-partisan administration by ousting Sheikh Hasina's one."
At the programme, BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi said that the law enforcers would not be able to stop the movement of the people against the government.
Talking to the Daily Sun, a central leader of the BNP has claimed that it is high time for the opposition party to take to street as the Awami League government is now in ‘trouble’ for various reasons, including allegations of corruptions, various irregularities and rigging in elections.
A senior leader of the party said though the BNP cannot achieve any desired outcome of their demonstration programmes and elections participation, the party wants to remain in the field to keep the party leaders and activists active and wait for ‘chance’.
“At the same time, BNP is also taking preparation for the next general election,” he added.