AL, BNP plan counter rallies on Jan 5


The Awami League (AL) and BNP have planned counter-programmes to observe the fourth anniversary of the 2014 general election on January 5. Like previous years, the ruling party will celebrate the day as “Democracy’s Victory Day” by taking out cheer rallies. On the other hand, the BNP, which had boycotted the polls, will observe January 5 as “Democracy Killing Day” by bringing out black flag marches.

The two political arch-rivals have taken their January 5 programmes seriously and even prepared for a showdown as they come ahead of the next general polls. In the capital, both the AL and BNP are likely to organise rallies in front of their respective party offices, according to insiders.

The BNP has sought permission to hold its rally at Suhrawardy Udyan on January 5. However, there is a little possibility for that as an Islamic front has been reportedly given permission to hold an anti-militancy rally there on the same day.

Briefing reporters, BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi said they would hold a rally at Suhrawardy Udyan on January 5 to observe “Democracy Killing Day”. The party will bring out black flag processions at district, city and upazila levels to mark the day.

However, there will be no black flag procession in Dhaka, he added.

Rizvi said they have written to the public works department (PWD) and the Dhaka Metropolitan Police for permission to hold the rally at Suhrawardy Udyan.

He expressed hope that the authorities would give them the permission to do so.

He, however, expressed ignorance on whether any other organisation had also sought or already given permission to use Suhrawardy Udyan on that day.

BNP leaders Dr AZM Zahid Hossain, Khairul Kabir Khokan, Mir Sharafat Ali Sopu and Monir Hossain were present at the press

briefing held at the party central office.

Khokan, the BNP joint secretary general, said the party may send a team to the DMP today to know about the development in getting permission to hold the January 5 rally.

A senior party leader said that if they were denied permission to hold the rally at Suhrawardy Udyan, they are likely to hold it in front of the party’s central office.

Talking to The Independent, AL joint secretary general Mahbubul Alam Hanif said they would observe January 5 as “Democracy’s Victory Day” by holding cheer rallies in the city and elsewhere in the country.

In Dhaka, both of the party’s south and north city units would hold separate rallies to mark the day.

The AL had come to power for the second consecutive time after the 10th parliamentary election. A total of 154 lawmakers had been elected unopposed as most of the political parties, including the BNP, did not take part in it.

The BNP-led 20-Party Alliance had waged unsuccessful movements before and after the polls to press for their demand to hold the lection under a non-partisan government and cancel the poll results. However, the violence during the movements had left over 100 people dead and hundreds injured, prompting the government to go for a tough crackdown in order to control the situation.

With the next parliamentary polls likely to be held later this year, the BNP and its likeminded parties have again started demanding that the election be held under a non-partisan administration.





*News Searching By The Independent bd*

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