WHAT A FARCE, BNP !
Syed Ashfaqul Haque
Only a handful of people join the BNP’s victory procession starting from the Jatiya Press Club yesterday to celebrate Bangladesh’s win against England in World Cup Cricket. Photo: Banglar Chokh
The last Monday and Tuesday are going to stand apart from all other days in recent memories. And Bangladeshis should remember long these days for two contrasting reasons.
Our cricketers gave us an occasion to go over the moon with their scintillating win over England on Monday while the BNP allowed us 12 hours on Tuesday to celebrate that success. The one from the cricketers is going to be considered as a fabulous feat and the other from the BNP an absolute farce.
The first-ever qualification into the quarterfinals of World Cup flung the nation into an unprecedented euphoria. The moment fast bowler Rubel Hossain rattled the furniture of England’s last batsman James Anderson with a vicious reverse-swinger, Bangladeshis, be at home or away, leaped up in the air and went for an instant celebration. That meaty, juicy win from Adelaide, in the form of a refreshing breeze, swept through the country that has been blighted by non-stop hartal and blockade for 64 days so far.
The BNP thought people would wait for a pause in its hartal-spree and celebrate the next day. The political party, however, kept the blockade on, logical meaning of which could be ‘celebration only within districts are allowed.’ Quite expectedly, Tuesday turned a disaster for the BNP. When people basked in the afterglow of overnight jubilation, a few dozen BNP men showed up in Dhaka for a belated celebration. Too bad the sporting gesture of the BNP has lost on people!
Why blaming people? Anyone in the 16-plus crore population of Bangladesh, including the ones in the BNP, would struggle to recall when is the last time we did not have to deal with a hartal on a weekday. In the name of political programme, the BNP and its allies have started this extremely destructive anti-government agitation since January 6: Blockade every day and hartal on the weekdays.
The toll on people and economy grew heavier with each wasteful day. The BNP said not a single word at any death of 86 people, of them 69 had no links with politics. No apology came from the party when 55 of them were burnt to death in attacks carried out on passenger buses and goods-laden trucks supposedly by its goons. Except for Mahbubur Rahman, none from the BNP turned up in the burn unit of the Dhaka Medical College Hospital to listen to the unearthly screams of the victims and to realise what havoc they wreaked on people, most of whom are ultra-poor. The party turned a deaf ear to repeated SOS from businesses, which lost Tk 1,40,000 crore in a very conservative estimate. It even showed no care for 14.79 lakh SSC examinees, who are left to suffer till date with tests being either postponed or rescheduled. One of the BNP leaders went on record saying ‘first democracy, then education.’
Even a great many deaths, tears and pleas could melt BNP’s heart. The party remained hell-bent on continuing its programme literally against the people for over two months. BNP chief Khaleda Zia lived up to her reputation as an uncompromising leader by sticking to her hartal guns. She even skipped customary ritual at Shaheed Minar on Amar Ekushey to show respect for hartal. And finally, the moment of truth came: the BNP showed it cared for cricket. A game of cricket appeared more significant than the people it does politics for.Sorry BNP, you made us sad.
Sorry BNP, you made us sad.
MARCH 11, 2015