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AL feud deepens in Savar over polls nominations

  • Published at 09:56 pm April 6th, 2018
AL feud deepens in Savar over polls nominations
The political arena of Savar is seeing a significant rise in heat as local ruling party politicians and activists rub elbows with the opposition - and each other - ahead of the next parliamentary polls. The leaders are all trying to bag their respective party’s ticket for the 11th national elections, which are likely to be held in December. Awami League leaders are far ahead of their BNP counterparts in this respect but their campaign trains could yet be derailed by a feud which local sources say is deepening among the ruling party’s local elite. The split within the Savar unit of the Awami League emerged with the selection of Dr Enamur Rahman as the successor to former MP Talukdar Tawhid Jong Murad in the last general election, according to party insiders. The crisis deepened further in the latest upazila council polls - a problem that Dr Enam has failed to resolve as yet. In the latest confrontation, two factions of the followers of Juba League Organising Secretary Faruk Hasan Tuhin took face-to-face positions over welcoming Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader on March 31. The two groups brought out processions in phases at Jirabo bus stand area. Although a tense situation ensued, there were no reports of major clashes. Faruk is among the frontrunners for the AL nomination for the Dhaka-19 constituency (Savar), and has said he is ready to work for the next elections with the backing of all supporting Awami League. He did hint, however, at the tension simmering beneath the surface of the campaign race, saying: “It is quite normal that there will be multiple nomination-seekers in big political parties like Awami League and BNP.” Faruk also said he would “never work against the will of his party”. The other nomination-seekers for Dhaka-19 are incumbent lawmaker Dr Enamur Rahman, his predecessor Talukder Md Tawhid Jong Murad, and Mohammad Fakhrul Alam Samar, a local UP chairman. MP Enamur refused to pass comment to the Dhaka Tribune on the reports of an internal dispute, but in some recent public rallies he said PM Sheikh Hasina had endorsed him in the last national elections, which allowed him to work for the locality. Tawhid Jong Murad also avoided commenting on the issue, but in a programme at Ashulia on April 4 said he was keen to run the polls race if given the party ticket. Samar, also a former Chhatra League leader, said he is expecting to be picked up by the party for the polls. While addressing different functions, he has been asking locals to vote for Awami League, without mentioning his name directly. Savar is likely to see two-time MP and former Dhaka district unit BNP President Dr Dewan Md Salahuddin Babu contesting the election for BNP. Other potential candidates for the main opposition party are BNP central executive committee member Maj (retd) Mizanur Rahman, and the suspended mayor of Savar upazila council, Md Kafil Uddin. The grassroots BNP in Savar thinks that Salahuddin Babu will be backed by the party high command in the polls. Talking about party activities, Salahuddin alleged that the local administration do not allow them to hold any programme outdoors. “We cannot even carry out our party activities through banners and festoons (as) leaders and activists of Awami League damage those as they want to retain power by any means,” he said.