Is the 11th parliamentary election of the country going to be held without the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) participating it? In the past two days, this has been a hot topic in the political and diplomatic arena. It is clear that the government has decided to step back from its decision of sending BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia abroad for treatment purpose. On the other hand, BNP persists that it intends to boycott the election unless its chairperson is released. Sources have confirmed that the compromise between the two major parties is in a hanging position now amid the growing distrust and suspicion of each other.
Sources in the government have said that the government decided to send Khaleda abroad for treatment. But, it got information that BNP is conspiring to topple the government at the national and international levels. Nevertheless, the government gave no clear depiction of such conspiracy. Now, the government has changed its mind and does not want to let Khaleda leave the country to create more pressure on BNP. Government reasons that Khaleda would become more active in her scheme to topple the government once she is abroad. Moreover, she would try to foil the election. An influential leader of AL said, ‘If we send Khaleda Zia abroad, it will prove that AL has imprisoned her to win the election, which is not true. Rather, the truth is that she has been imprisoned in a graft case. It is the decision of the court whether it will allow her to leave the country for treatment or not. Why should we send her abroad on our own terms?’ Many are saying that there is no guarantee that BNP would participate in the election if the government let her go abroad. BNP is unable to put its trust in AL. Another source has said, frustration and distrust are mounting up in BNP, and if Khaleda Zia is released, BNP will become active once again. Furthermore, the government thought of more pressure from national and international levels. But, BNP failed to create any notable pressure on the government. So, the policymakers of the government are saying, ‘What should there be rush?’
The government believes that the longer the BNP Chairperson remains behind the bars, the more vulnerable BNP will become. AL will not give away such opportunity to undermine the opposition. It wants to make the opposition more susceptible. If BNP decides to boycott the election, the government must ensure that the remaining parties join the polls. The government is working on it. Sources have confirmed that the government is working to convince the partners of the 20-party alliance to take part in the election if BNP boycotts it. A leader of AL said, ‘When all the parties will want to join the election, it will be tough for BNP to exclude itself from joining the election.’ Moreover, the government wants to weaken BNP more by pressuring them with their cases.
However, a leader of BNP said, ‘If the government wants to pressurize us, all the doors to participate the election will get shut for us. Then the government will have to arrange another election like January 5
. However, it is quite impossible to happen again.
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