Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said there is no doubt that BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia was also involved in the August 15 carnage conspiracy.
“Zia's wife [Khaleda] brought self-confessed killer of the Father of the Nation [Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman] to parliament by rigging votes. What does it mean? It was not only Zia but also his wife was involved in the conspiracy of the August 15 carnage. There is no doubt,” Hasina said.
The PM was addressing a discussion organised by the Awami League at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre marking the National Mourning Day and the 43rd anniversary of martyrdom of Bangabandhu.
Hasina said Ziaur Rahman, founder of BNP, had obstructed the investigation into the August 15 killing as he was fully involved in the killing. “Why did he obstruct the investigation if he had not been involved in the killing? Zia was fully involved.”
Referring to family members of Zia, she said, “These killers carried out the August 21 grenade attack [on AL's rally in 2004] and made repeated attempts [to kill me]. So, what development will the country see and what justice will people get if they assume power [again]?"
Terming August 15 “the most stigmatised day”, Hasina said Bangladesh would have been a developed and prosperous country in the world had not the day come and had the Father of the Nation been alive.
Talking about the recent student demonstration for safe roads, she said it is the government's duty to take action against those who wanted to create an unstable situation in the country by instigating students.
The PM said the government took all measures, including arrests of the bus driver and his helper, after the killing of two students in a road accident, but a group of people relentlessly instigated the students and spread rumours using social media platforms and media. “They wanted to create an abnormal situation in the country by instigating the students relentlessly," she said.
She added that there were also very renowned, wise and intellectual persons among the instigators.
The PM said many people, including those who believe in Pakistani spirit, were involved in the instigation. “But when the government arrests them, it raises hue and cry both in the national and international arenas."
“If anyone commits an offence, instigates and uses children for achieving personal gains, it's the duty of the state to take action against him, no matter how powerful they are,” she said.
She criticised those who thought they would get away committing offences just because they are famous writers, journalists and scholars.
Coming down heavily on some media outlets, she said the duty of some newspapers is only to tarnish the image of AL, make her government questionable and take measures so that the AL loses its popularity.
The PM said they always think that they will get honour, flag or some benefits if anyone comes to power through the illegal channel. “They are opportunists. Only because of them, the people of Bangladesh repeatedly fell in danger and lost their rights and democracy.”
Hasina, elder daughter of Bangabandhu, said they will build the country as “Sonar Bangla” as dreamt by the Father of the Nation.
She urged all, including AL men and followers of Mujib ideology, to keep in mind that they will not support anything unjust; rather they will work for building the country as hunger-and poverty-free one through implementing Bangabandhu's dreams.
The PM said people will not allow the killers to come to power again.
BSS adds: Hasina recalled that the country saw a division among freedom fighters with the emergence of the Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD) in the country's political scene and they started criticising Bangabandhu on all issues.
“The JSD started opposing the Father of the Nation using filthy language. But did they realise the consequences of their action; how harmful it could be for the country's independence?” she said.
The PM, however, said she believed the JSD did not have that realisation. Otherwise, they would have given Bangabandhu some time to consolidate the foundation of the independence.
Hasina also said immediately after assassinating Bangabandhu, the killers had renamed Bangladesh as Islamic Republic of Bangladesh like Pakistan and launched a vigorous hate campaign against Bangabandhu at home and abroad.
AL General Secretary and also Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader, Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed, Health Minister Mohammed Nasim, AL leader advocate Sahara Khatun and Tajuddin Ahmad's daughter Simeen Hussain Rimi, MP, among others, spoke on the occasion.