Sit before the blockade
THE opposition BNP is reportedly set to enforce yet another programme of three-day long blockade of rail, road and waterways from next Monday. Added to this, the proposed AL rally on 3 November is likely to cause us to lose virtually the whole week. Wasn't the BNP programme of 60-hour hartal, which inflicted enormous damage to life, property and business, enough?
As we reported earlier, several thousand A-Level examinees were deprived of a chance to sit for the exam due to the BNP's three days of shutdown of the country. And the planned blockade is going to affect around 20 lac Class-8 examinees. Is this how the opposition is going to build our future? We would hope the BNP would shun violent path and opt for the peaceful one to settle the political dispute.
In a similar vein, after her first attempt to reach out to the opposition, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina cannot also sit tight. Being in the government, the onus lies on her to see an end to the stalemate over polls-time government. The ruling party can play an important role in defusing the tense and violent situation by reassuming the initiatives for holding the dialogue.
The first round floundered primarily because of AL and BNP sticking unreasonably firmly on 28 October - 30 October respectively, as possible dates for dialogue. The AL should consider Begum Zia's proposal to hold talks anytime after the end of hartal and renew its offer without sitting on its ego. And that must be done before 4 November.