Next general elections under caretaker govt must: BNP

Main opposition BNP has announced a 10-point charter of demands including the resignation of the government and formation of a caretaker government to hold the next general elections in Bangladesh.

Party’s standing committee member Dr Khondker Mosharraf Hossain who was present at the BNP’s Dhaka divisional mass rally at Golapbagh in the capital, announced the demands on Saturday (December 10) afternoon.

The BNP leader observed that the fall of the authoritarian government for killing democracy, looting the country’s property is imminent. The next national election under a non-party, neutral caretaker government will only help ensuring the people’s government in Bangladesh, he said.

The divisional mass rally began at 10:15am on Saturday (December 10, 2022) at Golapbag ground in the capital. Thounds of people thronged the playground and adjoing areas overcoming all the obstructions. With the rise of the day, the entry points of the capital — Saidabad, Jatrabari, Maniknagar, Shajahanpur, Kamlapur Railway Station, Gopibagh, Tikatuli and major roads were filled up with BNP leaders and workers. No obstruction could stop the flow of people.

“Illegal and anti-people Awami League government will not be able to cling to power through wholesale arrest staging a high drama through police. We have hold talks with those who will take part in a joint movement to oust the unlawful and voterless government from power, Mosharraf said.

BNP standing committee member Dr Khondker Mosharraf Hossain addresses the party’s Dhaka divisional mass rally at Golapbagh in the capital on Saturday (December 10) afternoon.

BNP standing committee member Dr Khondker Mosharraf Hossain addresses the party’s Dhaka divisional mass rally at Golapbagh in the capital on Saturday (December 10) afternoon.

The BNP standing committee member said since the present government is a fascist one, they don’t want to understand the language of democracy. “They are afraid of those who talks about voting rights of people.”

Addressing the Awami League, Mosharraf said, “You want to cling to power holding elections of the day at night. People have already understood it well. Awami League has destroyed the economy, looted money from banks, and destroyed the judiciary. They will not be able to maintain law and order situation anymore. So, people from nine divisional cities of the country have already conveyed a message that they don’t want to see this fascist and looter government in power further.”

The former minister alleged that the government had arrested BNP central leaders including its secretary general so that the party could not make the today’s rally a success. They attacked the BNP central office completely unlawfully and took away important things including hard disks. “We condemn the brutal attacks of Awami League men and police on our party office,” he said.

The 10-point demands announced at the mass rally included

1. Awami League government must have to resign from power and dissolve parliament

2. A neutral election-time caretaker government will have to be formed in light of Section 58 Kha, Ga and Ghha which were incorporated in 1996 constitution.

3. The election-time neutral/government will form a independent and impartial Election Commission dissolving the existing one and ensure level-playing field by cancelling the EVM system. It will also have to arrange voting through ballot papers. Besides, it will have to cancel the use of party symbols in the local government elections.

4. Punishments of all opposition leaders and workers including Khaleda Zia, journalists and alems will have to be cancelled. Besides, all the false cases must have to be withdrawn, political prisoners will have to be freed from prisons as early as possible, government must refrain from obstructing any meetings, rallies and freedom of expressions, administration and the ruling party will not interfere in observing the democratic and peaceful programmes, and teh government must refrain from suing the opposition leaders and workers afresh to throttle the voices of opposition in an autocratic way.

5. Abolishing all the laws including the notorious Digital Security Act 2018 and Special Powers Act 1974 which violate the fundamental human rights of people.

6. Cancelling all the anti-people decisions for increasing the prices of electricity, energy, gas and water.

7. Bringing the prices of essentials within the purchasing power of common people and freeing the markets of essentials from teh grip of syndicates.

8. Forming a Commission to identify corruption at all levels of the state including money laundering, banking and financial sectors, power and energy sectors, and capital markets over the last 15 years.

9. Rescuing all the victims of forced disappearances happened over the last 15 years and holding trials of each incident of extrajudicial killing as early as possible; protecting the homes of religious minorities, refraining from vandalizing and occupying their property.

10. Allowing the law enforcing agencies, administration and judiciary to work freely avoiding undue interference in their duties.

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