12:00 AM, January 12, 2014 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:53 AM, March 08, 2015

Blockade resumes today for 24 hrs

Blockade resumes today for 24 hrs

Postponed from tomorrow
Rashidul Hasan

The BNP-led 18-party alliance last night thrice changed its decision on calling an indefinite countrywide blockade of roads, rail and waterways.
At 11:00pm, the alliance finally announced it will enforce a 24-hour blockade from 6:00am today. But the programme will remain postponed from 6:00am tomorrow until further notice.
Talking to The Daily Star, BNP standing committee member Lt Gen (retd) Mahbubur Rahman said he and some other party leaders talked to BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia about people's sufferings, especially those living hand to mouth, due to the blockade.
“I told the chairperson that people should be given some respite as they are fed up with the non-stop blockade programme,” mentioned the former army chief.
Several BNP leaders said the break in the blockade is part of the alliance's strategy to prepare for waging a fresh anti-government movement.
Earlier at 9:00pm, BNP acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir in a statement had announced to postpone the blockade programme for Monday and Tuesday due to the Eid-e-Miladunnabi.
Two hours back, in another statement, he had said people would bring back their just and democratic rights through a united movement.
The cabinet to be formed today lacks the representation of people, and will never be considered legitimate at home and abroad, he claimed, adding that the new government will not get moral support from any quarters.
He also demanded the government hold free, fair and inclusive polls under a non-party government without any further delay.
On Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's recent speeches, the BNP leader said the way she has been issuing threats to the opposition parties does not show a sign of democratic behaviour.
The premier has lately blamed opposition activists for the post-polls violence and attacks on the Hindus, and warned that the government will take tough steps to curb such incidents.
But Fakhrul put the blame on the ruling party men, and said: “The government is trying to distract people's attention from the mockery of the polls by holding the opposition responsible for the post-polls violence.”
The Awami League, he noted, could stay in power only temporarily by using tactics and misusing the state power.
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia last night went to her Gulshan office without carrying the national flag in her vehicle.
However, she came to the office with police protection, said party sources.
Since December 26 last year, the BNP chief did not come out of her Gulshan residence as she was virtually confined to her house.  
The previous day, additional police and Rab members were deployed around her residence. The government had claimed that it was done to ensure her security.
The BNP chief was barred from joining the “March for democracy” programme on December 29.


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