Polls without Khaleda Zia to be resisted: BNP

Polls without Khaleda Zia to be resisted: BNP

Dhaka, Sep 12 (Just New): BNP leaders today warned that they will not allow anyone to hold the 11th parliamentary elections without the release of the party chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia from jail.

Speaking at a two-hour token-hunger strike, they also voiced their strong resolve to free Khaleda from jail through a strong movement, reports UNB.

Hundreds of leaders and activists of BNP joined the two-hour-long programme from 10:00 am in front of Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh, demanding the immediate release of Khaleda Zia from jail and her proper treatment.

"We would like to say the election won't be participatory one without the participation of BNP and Khaleda Zia. We won't allow holding any such polls. We'll join the election after freeing our leader," UNB reports quoting BNP Standing Committee Member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain.

The BNP leader alleged that the government has kept Khaleda Zia in jail by convicting her “unfairly in a false” case. "We demand her unconditional release. Democracy won't be restored without her release. So, we must free her through a movement."

He criticised the government for not taking steps for ensuring proper treatment of Khaleda. "It's the government's responsibility to provide her with treatment since she is in jail. But it's not taking any step in this regard."

Mosharraf also alleged that the government is conspiring to hold another January 5-like election to hang onto power. "We would like to say we won't allow holding any such voter-less election."

Another BNP standing committee member Moudud Ahmed said it is now not possible to free Khaleda free from jail through a legal battle. "Taking to the streets is the only way to ensure her release. We're on a movement and we'll intensify it to ensure the government's fall."

The BNP leader called upon BNP leaders and activists to get necessary preparations to make their movement a success.

The 73-year-old BNP chief landed in jail on February 8 after a court sentenced him to five years’ imprisonment in the Zia Orphanage case.

Khaleda Zia is now facing 37 more cases. She has secured bail in all but three cases -- two in Comilla and one in Dhaka.