Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan on Saturday said the ban on holding any rallies in Dhaka is still in force, adding that police would decide on whether to allow a BNP rally on February 22 once it had been lifted.
"The ban imposed by the DMP commissioner has not yet been withdrawn. After lifting the ban, the commissioner will decide on where to allow the rally, depending on if it will affect law and order," he said.
The minister was addressing a program held to mark the launch of freedom fighter Humayun Kabir’s autobiography. The book is titled “Jibon Smrity-2.”
BNP on Friday announced a public rally in the capital on February 22, in order to demand the release of party chairperson Khaleda Zia. The BNP chief is currently serving time in jail after her conviction in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case on February 8.
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Speaking at the press briefing at BNP's Naya Paltan central office, party Senior Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi said they would hold the rally either at Suhrawardy Udyan or in front of their central office.
He added that they had already sought permission from the authorities concerned regarding the matter.
Ahead of the verdict against the BNP chairperson and five others in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case, the DMP on February 6 slapped a ban on holding any processions and carrying sharp weapons, explosives or flammable materials in the capital until further notice.
The home minister, however, said police do not obstruct any peaceful programs by BNP.
MP RAN Obaidul Muktadir Chowdhury, Deputy Inspector General of police (Chittagong Range) Md Moniruzzaman, Deputy Commissioner of Brahmanbaria Rezwaunur Rahman, and Police Super Mizanur Rahman were among those who attended the program, with Brahmanbaria Municipality Mayor Nayar Kabir in chair.