BNP will stage demonstrations in Dhaka on Saturday to protest the denial by authorities of permission to hold its scheduled rally in the city on Friday for what it calls “Democracy Killing Day”.
BNP Senior Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi announced the program at a press conference at the BNP’s Naya Paltan central office on Friday.
“It has been proved once again with the obstruction to BNP’s rally that the Awami League is a party that kills democracy,” he said.
Rizvi said the government did not allow BNP to hold the rally as part of its scorched-earth policy to hush up the “controversial” election held on January 5, 2014.
On Monday, the BNP announced plans to hold a rally at Suhrawardy Udyan and bring out black-flag processions across the country on Friday to observe the fourth anniversary of the most recent parliamentary election.
The Awami League was swept back into power in the 2014 poll amid widespread violence and a boycott by opposition parties including the BNP.
On Wednesday, the party sought permission from Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) and Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) for holding the program at Naya Paltan, as an Islamic party was allowed to hold a rally at Suhrawardy Udyan on the same day.
However, the DMP authorities urged the BNP to arrange an indoor program on Friday instead of a mass gathering outdoors.
BNP later shelved its plan to hold a rally or any other program in Dhaka to avoid confrontations. However, the party’s all other metropolitan, district and upazila units observed the day by bringing out black-flag processions.
Awami League also marked yesterday as “Victory Day for Democracy” by holding two separate rallies at a Banani field and Bangabandhu Avenue in Dhaka, alongside various other programs across the country.
Rizvi slammed the government for denying their party permission to arrange its own rally, while the ruling party was given permission to hold two rallies in Dhaka.
He also alleged that law enforcers were obstructing their party’s black-flag processions at different parts of the country, including Gazipur, Mymensingh, Khulna, and Chittagong.
A huge number of law enforcers have been deployed in and around the BNP’s Naya Paltan central office since Friday morning to avoid any possible untoward incident.