12:00 AM, December 28, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 06:40 AM, December 28, 2018

BNP senses polls defeat

Hasina says, urges all to guard polling centres to check violence

Awami League chief Sheikh Hasina yesterday said the BNP appeared to have sensed its defeat in Sunday's national election, and that the opposition party could attempt to sabotage the polls.

“Remain alert to any subversive activity of the BNP and its cohorts,” Hasina said, wrapping up the election campaign for the AL as well as the grand alliance, which her party leads.

Yesterday, Hasina addressed election rallies in Cumilla, Jessore, Tangail, Pabna and Panchagarh through video conferencing.

Speaking from her Sudha Sadan residence in the capital, she directed her party men to be vigilant against possible opposition “activities to upset the election”.

“They [BNP] could carry out attacks on Awami League leaders and workers as well,” she told the rally in Cumilla, claiming that the BNP so far killed five AL leaders, injured 141, attacked 170 election offices and houses and exploded bombs in 54 places.

Hasina, also the prime minister, asked AL leaders and activists to inform the law enforcement agencies about any subversive activity, and also asked them not to obstruct BNP candidates from carrying out campaigns.

“We want every political party to contest the election. It's their right and people will cast vote as they choose… so every political party should conduct their election campaign freely and fairly,” said Hasina, who is looking for a third straight term.

She hoped people would vote for “boat” to ensure victory of pro-liberation forces.

Before her speech, a documentary on the development that took place in each of those area over the last 10 years were presented before the audiences on big screens.

Earlier, Hasina introduced the AL candidates to the people of their respective constituencies and urged the voters to elect them.

The candidates are Subid Ali Bhuiyan (Cumilla 1), Selima Ahmed (Cumilla 2), Yusuf Abdullah Harun (Cumilla 3), Rajib Md Fakrul (Cumilla 4), Abdul Matin Khasru (Cumilla 5), AKM Bahauddin (Cumilla 6), Prof Ali Ashraf (Cumilla 7), Nasimul Alam Chowdhury (Cumilla 8), Md Tajul Islam (Cumilla 9), ANH Mostafa Kamal (Cumilla 10) and Mujibul Haque (Cumilla 11).

Hasina said her party always sincerely fulfilled the promises it made before elections.

All 13 upazilas of Cumilla are now under full electricity coverage, she said.

The PM said Bangladesh would attract huge foreign investments after peaceful elections. But the BNP and Jamaat are out to “destroy the peaceful atmosphere” and push the country to an anarchic situation like in 2014 and 2015.

Addressing the rally in Jessore, Hasina said her government would reduce poverty by four to five percent in the next five years if re-elected.

People are now confident of building Bangladesh as a prosperous nation as dreamt by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, she said.

A hi-tech park, a land port and rail link from the Padma Bridge up to Mongla Port are being constructed in Jessore while the existing road is being turned into four lanes, she said.

Hasina mentioned BNP's torture on minorities since 2001 election, saying they burnt and looted their houses and destroyed property.

Law enforcers strictly handled the mayhem, she said, adding that people did not want those days to return.

She also introduced the Awami League candidates in six constituencies there.

They are Sheikh Afil Uddin (Jessore 1), Nasir Uddin (Jessore-2), Kazi Nabil Ahmed (Jessore 3), Ranjit Kumar Roy (Jessore 4), Swapan Bhattachariya (Jessore 5) and Ismat Ara Sadek (Jessore 6).

“We've already implemented many projects in the country while many mega projects are underway,” she said.

This year's election manifesto has given utmost importance to the youths as they are the country's strength and they will bring prosperity for Bangladesh, the PM added.

The nation will celebrate the birth centenary of Bangabandhu in 2020 and the golden jubilee of independence in 2021.

So Hasina hoped the pro-liberation force would remain in power when the two auspicious occasions would be celebrated.

“We want to celebrate the two occasions with much festivity by establishing Bangladesh a hunger and poverty-free Sonar Bangla as dreamt by Bangabandhu,” she said.

Hasina also introduced the AL candidates from Tangail, Pabna and Panchagarh.

Later, she addressed people of her own constituency, Gopalganj-3, by phone.

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