Monday, June 24, 2024


Dhaka Tribune

Change in agenda for intensified BNP movement in October

  • The scale of the movement will be the largest ever
  • BNP leaders now deeply concerned about  Khaleda’s  illness
Update : 03 Oct 2023, 09:37 AM

The Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) is considering October as a crucial time and party policymakers are contemplating the announcement of a major political program during the first week, with the demands and agenda of the movement set to undergo changes.

With BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's condition deteriorating and hopes for her medical treatment abroad fading, the major opposition party will continue to press for the release of the party chairperson in their ongoing program for the resignation of the government.

Top leaders of the BNP said a political decision must be made regarding the election issue before announcing the schedule for the movement. They also said the scale of the movement will be the largest ever.

Previously, the party had planned to reach the peak of the movement in mid-October with a focus on the issue of fair and impartial elections. However, the BNP leaders are now deeply concerned about the seriousness of Khaleda Zia’s illness.

The BNP chairperson has been receiving treatment at Evercare Hospital in Dhaka for a month and a half. 

“The demand for her improved treatment is now the focus of our movement,” a BNP leader said.

The leaders indicated that the program's course will change based on the 48-hour ultimatum issued by the BNP to the government.

BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir said: "We are pioneers of peaceful movements. We will create a conducive environment through a series of stringent programs, avoiding any aggressive approach. This will compel the government to accept fair election compromises and facilitate Khaleda Zia's release and better treatment."

Party insiders say grassroots leaders and activists of the party are increasingly pressuring for a strong program regarding the Khaleda Zia issue.

BNP Joint Secretary General Moazzem Hossain Alal said: "Beyond the current program, something new is in the works—a turning point that will unite people across the country. The program will also undergo a significant transformation for related reasons."

He added that the structure of the movement is still under discussion with policymakers and will be finalized soon.

However, when contacted, other BNP top leaders did not disclose their next steps or programs regarding the different agenda for the movement.

One leader suggested that the Awami League might step down from power this October due to the turbulent movement of the country's people and international community pressure. 

An election-neutral government would be formed, ensuring free, fair, and acceptable elections. If this transpires, the people will elect the BNP to govern the state once more. Otherwise, the BNP will abstain from participating in the elections, the party leader said.

Mirza Fakhrul said: "We are committed to seeing this movement through to the end."

However, he refrained from providing a direct statement on whether this last strategy would result in a strike or even conflict. He emphasized that the situation would dictate the course, with the people's interests taking precedence.

BNP insiders have noted an increase in the involvement of common people in the ongoing peaceful program. However, they acknowledge that this program alone is insufficient to meet their demands. 

They said preparations are underway to implement a program that compels the government to resign. They are reportedly planning programs such as laying siege to the courts, the Prime Minister's Office, Secretariat, and Dhaka city. 

Beyond Dhaka, the movement will go up to an extreme level, the sources added

Regarding their election preparations, BNP leaders said they are ready for the polls at any moment, but they firmly believe the party will not participate in the election under the current government.

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