Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal
Although BNP has launched a simultaneous movement with more than four dozen parties and organisations to realise their 10-point demand, political analysts are skeptical about the ability of most of the parties to contribute to street programmes due to the lack of their organisational strength and popular public support. They said making alliances with many small parties is just a number game in the politics of Bangladesh, but only three to four parties have the organisational capacity and popularity to show their strength on the streets. The analysts, however, said some small parties now on the simultaneous movement with BNP have few leaders, including LDP president Oli Ahmed, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal president ASM Abdur Rob, Nagorik Oikya convener Mahmudur Rahman Manna, Biplabi Workers Party general secretary Saiful Haque, Ganasanghati Andolon’s chief coordinator Zonayed Saki, Gana Adhikar Parishads convener Reza Kibria, member secretary, Nurul Haque Nur, Kalyan Party chairman Syed Muhammad Ibrahim, and Gonoforum leaders Mostafa Mohsin Montu, Dr Abu Sayeed and Subrata Chowdhury, who have a face value and can play a role in shaping public opinion. They also said Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami still has a base across the country, and it can play a role in the movement. But they say that the success of the simultaneous movement will mainly depend on BNP while the other parties will work as a morale booster for it and justify its demands. After two rounds of talks with political parties, BNP on December 10 last year announced to launch the simultaneous movement with a 10-point demand, including the resignation of the current government and holding the next polls under a non-party neutral government. Earlier on August 8, seven opposition organisations Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD-Rob), Nagorik Oikya, Bangladesher Biplobi Workers Party, Gonosamhati Andolon, Gono Odhikar Parishad, Bhasani Onusari Parishad and Rastra Sangskar Andolon floated Ganatantra Mancha, a new political platform and announced to join the movement with BNP. Read more: 12-party alliance formed to support BNP’s movement On December 22, 12 political partners of the 20-party alliance--Jatiya Party (Kazi Zafar), Bangladesh Kalyan Party, Bangladesh Labour Party, Bangladesh Jatiya Dal, NDP, Bangladesh Liberal Democratic Party (LDP-Selim), Bangladesh Muslim League, Jamiat- Ulema-e-Islam Bangladesh, Islami Oikya Jote, Jagpa (Tasmia Prodhan), Islamic Party, and Bangladesher Samyabadi Dal-- formed a new alliance dissolving the 20-party to carry out a movement alongside the BNP and realise the 10-point demand. Another new political platform, “Jatiyatabadi Samamona Jote”, comprising 11 parties was launched on December 28 to strengthen the simultaneous movement. The parties in the new 11-party alliance are National People's Party-NPP, Jagpa (Khandkar Lutfur), Democratic League (DL), Bangladesh NAP, Bikalpa Dhara (Nurul Amin), Samyabadi Dal, Gano Dal, NAP-Bhasani, Islami Oikya Jote, People's League and Bangladesh Minority Janata Party. Islami Oikyajot and Samyabadi Dal are there in the two new alliances. On January 3, Ganatantrik Bam Oikya, a leftist political platform of four parties— Communist Party of Bangladesh (Marxist-Leninist, Social Democratic Party, Samajtantrik Majdur Party and Progressive Democratic Party—also announced to join the movement with BNP. On January 8, another new anti-government platform, “Samamona Ganatantrik Jote” (Like-minded Democratic Alliance) comprising 15 organisations was launched to join the simultaneous movement. The members of the newly formed alliance include Youth Forum, Zia Nagorik Sangsad, Democratic Movement, Shaheed Zia Ainjibi Parishad, Jatiyatabadi Nagorik Dal, Bangladesh Justice Party, Constitution Preservation Parishad, Ganatantra Raksha Mancha, Chalak Dal, Jatiyatabadi Muktijoddha '71, Ghure Dharo Bangladesh, Movement for Democracy, Bangladesh Democratic Council, Desh Raksha Manush Bachao Andolan and Bangladesh Jubo Oikya Parishad. Besides, Jamaat, LDP (Oli) and Gonoforum (Montu) also announced joint simultaneous movement. Of all these parties, only LDP (Oli) JSD-Rob, Biplobi Workers Party, Kalyan Party and Bangladesh Muslim League are registered with the Election Commission (EC). Read more: New anti-govt platform 'Samamona Ganatantrik Jote' launched Two programmes --mass rally and mass sit-in--of the simultaneous movement have so far been observed on December, 24, 30 and January 11 respectively, but the presence of leaders and workers of these parties and alliances was very poor. It’s a meaningless number game Shusashoner Jonno Nagorik (Shujan) Secretary and political analyst Badiul Alam Majumdar said it is the reality in Bangladesh that most of the political parties, except for three-four ones, are name-only organisations run by some individuals who have a face value. “It’s also our tradition to increase the size of alliances with such small parties. You can call it a meaningless number game. But only a few parties, especially Awami League and BNP are the key players in the politics of Bangladesh,” he said. Majumdar said BNP may feel good that many parties are with them, no matter what their organisational capacities are. “But only a few of them can play some sort of role in the movement.” He also said the success of the simultaneous movement mainly depends on how much strength BNP can demonstrate and how effective strategy the party can adopt. Number matters in politics Prof Mahbubullah, a pro-BNP intellectual and a former teacher at the Dhaka University, said the unity of the political parties--small and bigger ones--is now crucial to overcoming the current situation of the country and restoring people’s voting rights. “The size of the alliance matters in politics. Unite the many to defeat the few is an effective political philosophy to make political gains. So, one should not ignore the number of the political parties that have got united to realise public demands,” he observed. Read more: New political alliance “Jatiyatabadi Samamona Jote” launched The political analyst said there are many parties with BNP that may have not that much popularity and organisational strength, but some of their leaders have acceptability and face value. “They also have an influence among the people and they can help create public opinion.” “These parties don’t have huge supporters like the major ones, but they are also democratic forces. You may see their very thin presence on the streets, but their collective efforts can strengthen the movement for realising popular public demands,” he viewed. Unity among many parties has a value Prof Dilara Chowdhury, a former teacher of the Department of Government and Politics at Jahangirnagar University, said there are many parties with BNP’s simultaneous movement which do not have big workforces, but there are many national figures in those parties who matter in politics. “If these parties take to the streets simultaneously, it can boost up BNP’s moral strength. So, you can’t ignore the value of unity among so many political parties,” she observed. Besides, the political analysts said around 50 parties and organisations are now taking to the streets with BNP demanding the next election be held under a non-party caretaker government. “So, the number matters here when it comes to who is against the polls under a partisan government.” Read more: Quader to BNP: Ditch caretaker dream, prepare for election Prof Dilara said many common people are increasingly taking part in BNP’s current political rallies and programmes. “I am observing that BNP is seriously making efforts to turn around. The way BNP’s grassroots have been demonstrating strengths despite being subjected to various repressive acts is a very positive sign.”
President of Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JASAD) Hasanul Haq Inu on Sunday asked the Election Commission (EC) to be careful not to allow unwanted snooping of foreign diplomats. The party gave this suggestion after participating in a dialogue organized by the EC at its conference room of the election building. Jasad President Hasanul Haq said EC is not an institution of arbitration. "Do not engage in any arbitration or political debate. We are shocked by the work of the diplomats. Diplomats in Bangladesh give unsolicited advice. This is also the failure of our political parties. Political parties also protested at embassies here. It is not right to try to bring diplomats into the role of arbitrators on petty issues," he added. Also read: Will have tea with you if you accept demand for caretaker govt: Fakhrul to PM He also said that some people are boycotting the election dialogue. There are crises everywhere in the world. It is being corrected through continuous experience. "So this complaint is going from America to Japan. This is nothing new. But one thing everyone follows, under no circumstances should the election be thwarted on time except by constitutional means," he also said. He added that the EC should have a strong position to hold elections at the right time and will not make any concessions here. The former information minister said that those who are proposing to change the government before the election, they are actually proposing to subvert the constitutional clause. They are practically proposing to establish an unsual government. Also read: CEC: Army may be called out for next parliamentary polls "The political partners of those who are making these proposals, we see, are militant, known war criminals. So, behind the shadow of an unusual government, there is a process of bringing in a virtually sectarian Taliban government. It is a terrible thing for the country," he warned. He said, one thing is said that a flat place will be needed. It seeks the opportunity to bring the sentenced convicts to the elections. In the name of level playing field there will be no level playing field outside the ethics of democracy and law. "So democracy has boundaries. There will be no criminals in it and no militant groups. Everyone should be careful in this place," he also said. Hasanul Haque Inu said the issue of supporting signatures of 1 percent voters of independent candidates needs to be considered as the constitution says that anyone can get nomination if he is qualified. So how the provision got into the People's Representation Order, it is our mistake. "You will consider it. If one fulfills the conditions, he can be a candidate. Think about how and what to do to exercise executive power," he said. In the dialogue, party general Shirin Akhtar MP presented the written proposal.
President Abdul Hamid will meet the leaders of Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (Inu) at Bangabhaban on Wednesday as he continues discussion with the political parties on the formation of the next Election Commission. The current EC is scheduled to expire on February 14 next year. The dialogue, second in the series, is scheduled to be held at 4 pm, President's Press Secretary Joynal Abedin told UNB. The president opened the dialogue on Monday with Jatiya Party (JaPa), the main opposition party in Parliament. The eight-member JaPa delegation was led by its chairman GM Quader. Bangladesh National Awami Party (NAP) has been invited to hold the dialogue at 4pm on December 26 while Bangladesher Samajtantrik Dal (BSD) will meet the president at 6pm the same day, Abedin said. Read: President opens dialogue on new EC, meets JaPa delegation Bangladesh Tarikat Federation and Khelafat Majlish will participate in the discussion at 4 pm and 6 pm on December 27 respectively while Bangladesh Workers' Party is scheduled to join on December 28 at 4pm. On December 29, Bangladesh Nationalist Front (BNF) was invited to hold the dialogue at 4pm while Islami Oikya Jote exchange will exchange their views with the President at 6pm on the same day. Now there are 39 registered political parties, according to the EC website. But only nine parties have representation in Parliament. The nine parties are Bangladesh Awami League, Jatiya Party, Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), Bangladesh Workers Party, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal-Jasod, Bikalpadhara Bangladesh, Ganoforum, Bangladesh Tarikat Federation and Jatiya Party-JP.
Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal President Hasanul Huq Inu on Tuesday said that although the finance minister identified the priority sectors correctly, but the budget allocation to these sectors are not correct."This budget is not for recovering the economy, rather it is the budget to just live the year from hand to mouth. There will be growth but not the inauguration of a well-balanced economy," he said while taking part in the general discussion on the budget proposals for 2021-22 fiscal. He claimed that there was a scope to step outside the box accommodating the experiences from home and abroad, and formulate clear farsighted plan to prepare to fight the coronavirus and revive the economy. Also read: Poor, jobless people largely ignored in budget: BNP "But that does not happen," he added.Talking about lack of good governance in the health sector, he said that everybody knows that what is happening in public purchasing in all sectors including the health.He mentioned that there is only news of corruption in the health sector, they got less allocation, but they could not utilise their previous allocation properly."They just earn bad name of corruption in whatever they have done in the name of purchasing. As a result the country does not get oxygen plants in right time," he said.He also alleged that there was no good management although the government procured various materials related with fight against Covid-19 pandemic. Also read: JS passes Tk 13,987.27 cr supplementary budgetThe Jasod chief said syndicate prevails in project formulation, expenditures and implementation.He called for transparency and accountability in the public procurement by wiping out the identified syndicate of corruption.Inu stressed that the number one priority of the government should be procurement of corona vaccine and stop mismanagement and anomalies."There should be a process to produce vaccine in the country, all should get vaccine within one year, coronavirus has to be defeated, otherwise everything will be meaningless," he said.He said that although some people think that corruption is the companion of development, but he does not believe in that theory."I believe that development without corruption is possible, pace of development will be accelerated many times," he said. Also read: New budget proposals inadequate in tackling poverty, say rights groupsInu also advocates for good governance in ruling the country and implementing the budget.He mentioned that there was a need to take steps for bringing structural change in health, education, social safety net, food security and internet usage by adopting those as basic rights."We could do that this time if we want," he said.
Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal MP Shirin Akhter on Tuesday demanded intervention of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to prevent the implementation of the recommendation of a parliamentary committee to exclude women officers during 'Guard of Honour' given to the freedom fighters after their death. "I am surprised, shocked and upset, my colleagues have made such recommendations," she said while speaking on a point of order in parliament. Read: Menon comes down hard on recommendation against female UNOs attending guard of honour for FFs She said that as per the Constitution of the country there can be no discrimination between men and women. "We are stunned when this happens in that country," Shirin Akhter, also general secretary of Jasod said. Leader of the House and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was present in Parliament at the time. Read:MP Shahiduzzaman made chief of parliamentary standing committee on Law Ministry The parliamentary standing committee on Liberation War Affairs ministry on June 13 recommended taking necessary measures to find alternatives to a female upazila nirbahi officer's presence during the guard of honour given to valiant freedom fighters after their deaths. Speaking on this issue, Shirin Akhter said that the parliamentary committee has argued that since women cannot take part in the namaz-e-janaza, they cannot give guard of honor to the valiant freedom fighters. Read: Hajj Management Bill passed to deal with irregularities Shirin argued that janaza and guard of honor are not the same thing. "Such recommendation has come from the pro-liberation forces at a time when radicalism is growing across the country. I seek the intervention of the Prime Minister so that such an unwanted decision is not implemented,” she added.
BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Thursday alleged that it is the government, not BNP, that has a link with Hefazat-e-Islam. “They (govt) have established a reign of terror in the country. Several thousand people have been arrested in the last few days since March 26. Our party workers in Chattogram, Brahmanbaria and Dhaka can’t stay at home at night,” he said. Speaking at a virtual discussion, the BNP leader said, “Our leaders and workers were arrested by conducting block raids in Keraniganj. If we protest against it, they say we’ve a link with Hefazat. But the fact is that it’s you who has the link with Hefazat. You’ve made an agreement with them (Hefazat) by sitting at a meeting at the house of the Prime Minister.” Also read: BNP involved in Hefazat violence: Obaidul Quader Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD) arranged the virtual discussion on the coronavirus situation. Fakhrul also said the Prime Minister has clearly said her party has given Hefazat huge money and did many things for the Quami madrasas. “So, you (AL) have taken the responsibility of Hefazat and you’ve to fulfil the responsibility. You’re deceiving people in carrying out that responsibility. You’ve lost all the confidence of people, and you’ve now started torturing them. You’ve turned this country into a police state,” he observed. The BNP leader alleged that the government is not giving people and political parties any scope to express their own views. Also read: BNP demands release of arrested religious leaders Though the government talks about democracy, he said, it is unwilling to allow anyone to protest or speak against it. “You also don’t want anyone to speak against injustice and identify your mistakes. So, you can no longer be a democratic government.” Fakhrul alleged the government has failed to tackle the coronavirus situation and ensure vaccine doses for the country’s people. “We don't know whether those who received the first dose of vaccine would get the second dose as there’s a speculation that India is not going to export the vaccine.” He also criticised the government for depending on a single country for the vaccine instead of collecting it from different sources and countries.
BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Saturday said the coronavirus situation has reached an alarming level in Bangladesh due to the government’s “indifference and incapability” to take effective preventive measures. “The government has been exhibiting double-standards in formulating the corona prevention policy. On one hand, they’re saying that we’re giving lockdown and resuming public transport services and reopening shopping malls and shops on the other,” he said. Speaking at a virtual discussion, the BNP leader said, “It means the corona situation has reached such an alarming level only because of their (govt’s) indifference, failure and incompetence.” Also read: BNP for 'all-party committee' to stop Covid surge He said health experts are warning that the nation is going to face a serious disaster as over a hundred to thousand people may die from coronavirus next month if the virus continues to surge. Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD-Rob) arranged the discussion marking the Golden Jubilee of the country’s independence. Fakhrul said people are going through serious sufferings for lack of sufficient Covid test facilities, lack of treatment and ICUs in hospitals. “This is unfortunate for us that the corona has now taken a terrible turn in the country. The government has not taken any effective preventive measures though the virus has hit the country last year. As a result, the second wave of the virus has come this time, endangering the lives of people and their livelihoods,” he observed. Also read: Covid situation getting out of hand: BNP The BNP leader said though the government has started the mass vaccination drive, it is now unable to provide any assurance to people about when the next consignment of the vaccine doses will arrive in the country. "Now, they're saying they’re trying to get vaccines from China and Russia. But it’s too late. " JSD president ASM Abdur Rob, Nagorik Oikya convener Mahmudur Rahman Manna and former vice president of Dhaka University Central Students' Union (Ducsu) Nurul Haque Nur, among others, addressed the programme.
BNP candidate Abu Sufian has demanded suspension of the ongoing by-polls to Chattogram-8 constituency mentioning various irregularities, including polling centre capture by Awami League activists.