BNP senior leader Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain on Saturday said the party will hold rallies at all the divisional cities, including Dhaka, to drum up public support for its Chairperson Khaleda Zia’s release from jail.
“We are carrying out our movement in a peaceful and disciplined manner. We will hold a rally at Suhrawardy Udyan to demand our chairperson’s release on March 12,” he said.
Mosharraf made the announcement at a discussion arranged by the Jatiyatabadi Ulema Dal at Dhaka Reporters’ Unity to press home demands for Khaleda Zia’s release.
The BNP leader added that a rally will be held in Khulna on March 10, before others are organized throughout the country.
Through the rallies, BNP will apprise people of the government’s “evil design” to hold another unilateral election by keeping Khaleda Zia in jail for a “false and fabricated” case, he said.
Mosharraf, a BNP Standing Committee member, further said that the party has already informed people about the “injustice” committed against Khaleda by the government through the distribution of leaflets.
“We’re reaching out to people with peaceful programs to drum up public support,” he added.
Regarding BNP’s plan to hold a public meeting at Suhrawardy Udyan in Dhaka on March 12, he said: “We’ve come to know that the Prime Minister is going to address a rally of Awami League at Suhrawardy Udyan on March 7, and later Jatiya Party of HM Ershad will also arrange the similar programme at the same venue. So, the government must allow us to hold the rally there.”
Mosharraf hoped that a large number of people would join the rally spontaneously. “It’ll be a much bigger one than we held the rally on November 12 last year with our Chairperson Khaleda Zia present.”
He added that the government would not be able to hold the next polls by keeping Khaleda Zia out of the race, as people will not accept such an election.
The BNP leader further said the government’s plan to tarnish the BNP chairperson’s image by jailing her has backfired, as people are increasingly showing sympathy for her.
He also alleged that the government is trying to hike gas and power tariffs again, in an attempt to plunder public money.
Meanwhile, speaking at a human chain program organized by Jatiyatabadi Sramik Dal in front of the National Press Club in Dhaka also to demand Khaleda Zia’s release, BNP Standing Committee member Nazrul Islam Khan said the government would not be able to weaken the party by keeping its chief in jail.
“Khaleda Zia’s popularity has increased after sending her to jail. We would like to say that the people’s movement can’t be suppressed by keeping our leader in jail,” he said.