12:00 AM, December 03, 2012 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, December 03, 2012

BNP boycotts talks with EC

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Staff Correspondent

Main opposition BNP yesterday boycotted electoral talks with the Election Commission as the issue of the caretaker government was not on the agenda.
The party was to attend the dialogues yesterday afternoon. It sent two letters to the EC on Thursday, refusing to participate in the discussions if the agenda did not include “provision of the interim government before the next general elections.”
Jamaat-e-Islami, a key component of the BNP-led 18-paty alliance, is set to boycott the talks today.
A number of other components of the alliance have already boycotted the dialogues.
Chief Election Commissioner Kazi Rakibuddin Ahmad termed BNP's boycott a political stratagem, adding the commission will consider the party's views on re-demarcation of the parliamentary constituencies if sent to it.
There is no problem arranging the dialogues again for the BNP, said Rakibuddin, while talking to reporters at the EC. "We will welcome the BNP if it wants to sit with the commission.”
The discussions close on Wednesday, the day set for the Awami League and some other parties.
TOKEN STRIKE
Meanwhile, reporters of the print and electronic media yesterday decided not to cover the ongoing dialogues in protest at Election Commissioner Mohammad Abdul Mobarak's misbehaviour with them.
They held a sit-in on the premises of the commission.
After the day's electoral talks on Saturday, Mobarak behaved rudely with reporters before the chief election commissioner and other officials of the commission.

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