Sylhet rally to ring bell for govt’s departure: BNP
The Bangladesh Nationalist Party standing committee member, Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain said in Sylhet on Friday the party chief would announce the next programmes from a rally in Sylhet after the road march on Tuesday.
He said the bell for the government’s departure would ring from the rally as the people no longer wanted it to stay in office.
‘The people’s sufferings are increasing everyday and
they do not want to see this government in office any longer,’ said Mosharraf, also head of the coordination committee for Sylhet road march of the opposition alliance, at a preparation meeting in the northeastern city.
The meeting was attended by leaders of Sylhet district and city unit BNP and its associate bodies. The road march towards Sylhet is scheduled to start from Dhaka on October 10.
‘The BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia will announce a fresh course of action programmes for protection of the country and its people,’ he said and asked the local leaders and and activists, suffering from factional feuds, to work together avoiding any ‘misunderstandings’ and work together in the interest of party unity.
BNP standing committee member Mirza Abbas, vice-chairman Shamsher Mubin Chowdhury, the party chief’s adviser Ruhul Alam Chowdhury, joint secretary general Mohammad Shahjahan and leaders of its Sylhet city and district unit also spoke at the meeting chaired by the party’s organising secretary M Ilais Ali.
Despite Mosharraf’s call, party insiders said lingering rivalry between two factions — known as Ilias group, led by M Ilias Ali, and the Saifur group, led by the BNP central committee member Shahriar Hossain Chowdhury — has intensified in a few days.
The factional quarrel between the two groups of the Sylhet BNP was clearly evident during Friday’s meeting as it was boycotted by leaders and activists of the Shahriar group.
The two factions reportedly held separate preparatory meetings on Wednesday and Thursday, party sources said.
When contacted, Shahriar Hossain Chowdhury told New Age that they were working seriously to make the party programmes successful.
He, however, admitted that his group did not attend the preparatory meeting where the central leaders were present as they (leaders of Shahriar group) had not been invited properly to the meeting.
‘I see no possibility for resolution of the conflict between the two factions before Tuesday’s programme,’ Shahriar added.
The district organising secretary Ali Ahmed, an Ilias loyalist, however brushed aside the allegation of not inviting the Shahriar group properly. ‘All the party leaders and activists were invited repeatedly. It is not an individual liability but all party leaders have a responsibility to make any party programmes successful,’ he added.
Mosharraf came to Sylhet Thursday night after inspecting all the venues Khaleda would address on her way from Dhaka to ensure proper coordination among the BNP units, its fronts and alliance components.
The five-member coordination committee earlier visited the venues of rallies at Tarabo in Rupganj in Narayanganj, Itakhola ground in Narsinghdi, Bhairab in Kishoreganj, Bangalpara High School ground at Brahmanbaria, Shayestaganj crossing at Habiganj and Sherpur ground at Moulvibazar.
The BNP chief is likely to address few more wayside gatherings. The last rally would be at Sherpur of Moulvibazar on October 10 and the next day the concluding rally will be held in Sylhet.
The BNP-led alliance has sought permission for Alia Madrassah ground for the rally.
The BNP is also planning to hold a rally in Mymensingh town ahead of Eid-ul-Azha as part of the party and alliance’s campaign for restoration of the caretaker government system and holding elections under a ‘neutral’ election commission.
The party’s acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir sat with leaders of Mymensingh and adjacent districts Friday evening and discussed preparations for the rally.
The party sources said the local leaders preferred October 25 for holding the rally as Shyama Puja of the Hindu community falls on October 26.
The date would be finalised after consultation with the BNP chief, said a leader of Mymensingh.
He said although the schedule was for a rally, it might take the shape of a ‘road march’ as the BNP chief would address some rallies on her way to Mymensingh.