BNP HAS LOST
One may even file a case of crimes against humanity against Khaleda Zia
Two write-ups on Wednesday clearly told me that BNP has lost its terror battle against the Awami League government, and must be ready to face the consequences.
But before I go on, I must ask why Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is being so soft against such terrorism in the name of politics. She should know that the people of this unfortunate country have given her the approval to take the severest stand against this form of terrorism, unleashed by the BNP and its allies, the terrorist organisation called Jamaat-e-Islami, and its student-wing Islami Chhatra Shibir.
No nation in the world has ever bowed to terrorism, and thus the premier must remain firm when dealing with terrorism. The ruling AL leaders and workers must come out on the streets to safeguard the general people. There must be many rallies and political activities to overcome the terror activities.
Now, coming to the write-ups — in the popular daily Bangladesh Protidin, BNP standing committee member Lt Gen (retd) M Mahbubur Rahman wrote about his feelings after visiting the burn unit at the Dhaka Medical College Hospital. He said those who were killing innocent people were worse than animals. He wrote that the pain was unbearable.
General Mahbub, a former army chief, is widely known as a man of reason and different from most other politicians. I telephoned and thanked him for his article, saying it showed there was at least one person in the 20-party alliance who had the guts to talk reason.
The general, in reply, said that it was not a political write-up, but something he felt as a human being. How can these criminals be so ruthless and inhumane? It is unacceptable.
However, he evaded answering when asked why he could not convince BNP Chief Khaleda Zia against such terror activities, saying whoever the criminals are, they must be brought to justice.
But who are these criminals? Therein lies the problem. From police and security personnel accounts, these “criminals” belong to Chhatra Shibir and Chhatra Dal, the BNP’s student wing. Media reports also indicate that, as far as the list of arrestees are concerned. But the BNP keeps on claiming that their people were not involved in the terror acts.
Secondly, The Daily Star, in an analysis piece, for the first time directly labelled the ongoing firebombings as nothing less than terrorism. Syed Ashfaqul Haque, in his front-page analysis, wrote: “The widely acceptable definition [of terrorism] is: The use of violence or the threat of violence, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political goals. So, if we go by this definition, what we are now faced with is all but political agitation.”
He made a very valid point that a terror tag like Jamaat may eventually initiate BNP’s political funeral. He apparently backs my view of dealing with terrorism with a tough hand, saying the AL has “miserably failed to protect the people.” Thanks Mr Haque.
What the BNP and Jamaat have launched in the name of politics is setting a new trend that kills people to gain in politics, and also in making people increasingly anti-politics — meaning unconstitutional regimes will be encouraged.
One young analyst explained to me after working in a security organisation for quite some time, that BNP-Jamaat tactics will bring a fundamental change in Bangladesh’s bloody politics unless the government makes sure that their tactics fail. From the side of the people, the BNP has been rejected, as far as their so-called demand for polls and terror tactics is concerned.
Actually, after one-month of terrorism, with Begum Khaleda Zia in the comforts of her air-conditioned office, BNP-Jamaat has neither been able to move an inch forward in its demands, or make people hate the government.
I had written earlier that calling for an indefinite blockade is a mistake and now general strikes coinciding with the SSC exams is nothing but anti-people. You cannot hurry to power after blunders. The AL had to wait 22 years to return to power after the brutal assassination of Bangabandhu and most of his family members.
A young analyst told me that the BNP was trying to bring in the army by hook or by crook or a repetition of 1/11, which is a far cry from reality. Things have changed in these six years of Sheikh Hasina’s rule. The other weapon the BNP is using is rumours without any basis, some of which include that India is unhappy with Hasina, that Barack Obama told Narendra Modi to look into Bangladesh, and army generals are meeting secretly!
The last resort for BNP-Jamaat might be targeted killings. Many people believe that when you are drowning, you want to ensure as much damage as possible to your opponent.
The BNP’s political bankruptcy is also clear in TV talk-shows. Those who side with the BNP-Jamaat stammer, and feel lost while talking about bombings of innocent people as they, on the one hand, they don’t know who are carrying out these attacks, and on the other hand, they fail to condemn the killings or call for them to stop.
BNP-Jamaat should know that it took nine years for a united Bangladesh to topple the military regime of General Hussein Muhammad Ershad. Thus, will it be possible to overthrow an elected government of Sheikh Hasina, who leads one of the country’s most powerful and historic political parties — the AL?
On the streets, the civil society and professionals have screamed against Khaleda Zia, soon the working class may have a backlash if they are not allowed to earn their livelihood by rejecting either blockades or general strikes.
Many bomb-throwers have faced public wrath, and know the next time it may be those belonging to the BNP-Jamaat-led 20-party alliance. One may even file a case of crimes against humanity against Khaleda Zia.
FEBRUARY 06, 2015