Neutral govt, not caretaker, a must for free polls
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia last night said that for a free and fair election participated by all, a caretaker government is not a must but a neutral government is.
Credible election was not possible under the Awami League-led government, she said.
“I won't say that a caretaker government is a must [for holding national elections] but the election has to be held under a neutral government, no matter what its name is. That election will have to be free, fair and participated by all political parties,” Khaleda said.
The BNP chief made the remarks while exchanging views with the newly elected office bearers of Brahmanbaria District Bar Association.
“The last three city polls proved again that no fair election is possible under the Awami League government … ,” she said, adding that people would get the opportunity to cast their votes if polls were held under a neutral administration.
“But this illegal government will not allow the holding of a free and fair election as it knows very well that it would not be able to stay in power if a free election is held,” added Khaleda.
For the last four years, the BNP-led 20-party alliance had been demanding a general election under a non-party caretaker government.
Mentioning that the caretaker government system was introduced following the strong demand of the Awami League and Jamaat, the BNP chief yesterday said the ruling party scrapped the system as it feared the results of fair polls.
Apparently addressing her archrival Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Khaleda said, “Why don't we see each other's face? Why don't we sit together? Did we not introduce the parliamentary form of government sitting together?”
Criticising the government for what she said obstructing the political activities of opposition parties, the former opposition leader claimed that there was no democracy and the rule of law in the country.
“Political parties cannot arrange any rallies, processions and even human chain programmes in the country. The government has turned the entire country into a jail. Their only job is to file cases against BNP leaders and activists,” she alleged.
“We hope good sense will prevail. Or else, the consequences will be dire.”
Khaleda alleged that people were getting killed in road crashes regularly due to the bad condition of the country's roads and highways. “Nearly 242 people were killed in the last 10 days due to sordid condition of the roads, but the government is least bothered about it.”
Accusing the government of trying to destroy the BNP, she said no one would be able to annihilate the BNP.