The announcement was made on Friday morning
A group of leaders from the political party Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh have announced a new executive committee, excluding party’s founding Chairman Dr AQM Badruddoza Chowdhury, his son and Joint Secretary General Mahi B Chowdhury, and Secretary General Maj (retd) Abdul Mannan.
Bikalpa Dhara Presidium member and Dhaka University teacher Nurul Amin Bepari on Friday declared himself the new chairman of the party, at a press conference at the National Press Club in Dhaka. He also declared expelled Bikalpa Dhara leader Shah Alam Badal as the new secretary general, and Shah Ahmed as the new vice president.
He claimed that Maj (retd) Abdul Mannan had been removed from his position because of his involvement in corruption.
"I came to learn through different news reports that Abdul Mannan had been summoned by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC). No corrupt individual can occupy a position in this party," Nurul Amin said.
Also addressing the press conference, Shah Alam Badal said the full committee will be announced soon, and the party will join the Dr Kamal Hossain-led Jatiya Oikya Front.
"For 14 years, Dr Badruddoza and Abdul Mannan stopped us from participating in politics. He was helpless in front of his son. That is why the leaders of Bikalpa Dhara made this decision," he added.
"Through this announcement, I am specifying that the new committee is the main force of Bikalpa Dhara. Anyone outside this committee is our opposition," Badal further said.da
When contacted, Bikalpa Dhara Joint Secretary General Mahi B Chowdhury said the matter of expelled leaders ousting those who founded the party was “nothing but a joke.”
“It is not wise to rely on the statements of those who are not in the party,” he added.
Voicing his suspicion that BNP may be involved in the sudden announcement, Mahi further said such actions were taken to confuse the people.
Bikalpa Dhara Secretary General Maj (retd) Abdul Mannan said the defecting politicians had the right to say anything because it is their freedom of speech, but that did not mean their statement was correct.
“Nurul Amin Bepari has long been inactive in politics. Shah Alam Badal is an expelled member who had violated party discipline. Their latest move is nothing but a falsehood. It is unacceptable for people who were expelled from the party to now act as party leaders,” he added.
Shah Alam Badal was expelled from Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh on October 13, for joining a Jatiya Oikya Front program.
The recently formed Jatiya Oikya Front is a coalition of political parties that include Dr Kamal Hossain’s Gono Forum, BNP, the ASM Abdur Rob-led Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD) and Mahmudur Rahman Manna-led Nagorik Oikya. Bangladesh National Awami Party (NAP) and National Democratic Party (NDP) also joined the coalition on Thursday.
Bikalpa Dhara had been in talks to join Jatiya Oikya Front, but Dr Badruddoza Chowdhury said they would only do so if BNP broke its ties with Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh.
Gono Forum, JSD, Nagorik Oikya, and Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh are also part of the Badruddoza-led Juktofront.
Former president of Bangladesh Dr AQM Badruddoza Chowdhury founded Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh in 2004, after being forced to step down as president in 2002. He is the founding secretary general of BNP.