THANK heavens and the BNP that it has announced an indefinite end to hartals and blockade from yesterday. We would hope that this will be permanent. We want to believe that the decision stems for the awareness that the idea of blockade is totally destructive for the country and counterproductive for the party.
We fully understand the opposition's need to articulate its grievances and express dissent but we cannot concur with the method that has been employed by the BNP for doing that. The violence in the name of oborodh and hartal has taken a very heavy toll of human lives, private and public property and on the economy as a whole, not to speak of the political mileage the BNP has lost as a result of this. It is the people and the economy that must come first for any political party. The extent that the common man had to suffer in terms of loss of livelihood, in the last two months in particular, makes such programmes anti-people.
We believe too that time has come for the opposition to reassess its method of expressing dissent because what we have seen so far does not meet the definition of political programmes. And just as we will move forcefully with the government to engage with the opposition in a meaningful dialogue to address the issue of a fully participatory election so do we with equal force move with the opposition to be more judicious in selecting the method of political agitation, certainly to shun the path of violence.