Saturday, 1 April, 2023

BNP would do well to prepare for elections

BNP would do well to prepare for elections

BNP has long been waging a countrywide protest movement with a set of unconstitutional, irrational and bizarre demands which include resignation of the incumbent government and restoration of non-party caretaker government system. But so far it could neither generate enough public support nor get sufficient backing from other political parties to press home their demand. Although BNP is claiming that 54 opposition political parties are at one with its demand, the fact is that a great majority of those parties do exist in name only.

According to the Election Commission (EC), there are 40 registered political parties in the country. Of them, only six (15 per cent of total parties) are currently supporting BNP’s movement, while the rest of the 33 parties (85 per cent) have nothing to do with BNP’s movement and demands. Therefore, it is crystal clear that BNP’s movement is not going anywhere. And if BNP boycotts elections, this is going to be self-defeating and the party’s political future will be in serious trouble.

So, let’s hope that common sense will prevail and BNP will participate in the upcoming national polls and refrain from creating any chaos and anarchy. A strong opposition party is crucial for any democracy. But the strength of a political party is best demonstrated in its pro-people activities, not in bringing the entire country to a halt and carrying out widespread vandalism. In the past, BNP demonstrated its strength in the wrong way, at wrong places and ended up antagonizing the public. So, the BNP, as well as all other political parties, must remember that public support cannot be demanded, it has to be earned through pro-people activities.

Now that the national election is less than one year away, BNP would do better if it returns to democratic process and prepares for the polls. There is hardly any time to waste in the name of meaningless and unfruitful movements. Besides, the party top brass must not say anything that belittles the spirit of the Liberation War. Some BNP leaders’ recent comments about the actual number of deaths in our Liberation War only tarnish the party’s image. Besides, if BNP can detach itself from anti-liberation forces, it will hold the party in good stead in the long run.