BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir today said Jatiya Oikyafront will continue movement to press home their demands including dissolution of parliament ahead of the national election.
“We are still in movement,” Fakhrul, the top leader of the opposition alliance, said after holding dialogue with the ruling 14-party alliance at Gono Bhaban this afternoon. The Oikyafront leaders, at a rally in Dhaka yesterday, threatened to intensify movement through a series of programmes if today’s discussion went in vain.
Responding to a query over the outcome of today’s dialogue, Oikyafront key leader Dr Kamal Hossain said it is the responsibility of the government to bring a peaceful resolution of the current political stalemate.
“The ball is now in the court of the government,” the veteran jurist told reporters at a press briefing at his Bailey Road residence.
Replying to another question about the present stance of the alliance, the Oikyafront leaders, however, denied making any direct comment in this regard.
Earlier, an 11-member delegation of Oikyafront took part in the three-hour long second round of discussion with Awami League-led 14-party alliance that began at 11:00am at the official residence of the prime minister.
Apart from Kamal and Fakhrul, other delegation members -- ASM Abdur Rob, Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain, Moudud Ahmed, Mostafa Mahsin Mantu, Subrata Chowdhury, Mahmudur Rahman Manna, SM Akram, Abdul Malek Ratan and Sultan Mohammad Mansur Ahmed -- participated in parley.
On the other hand, Awami League President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina led a 12-member delegation of the 14-party ruling alliance at the talks.
Her delegation included Obaidul Quader, Amir Hossain Amu, Tofail Ahmed, Mohammad Nasim, Rashed Khan Menon, Hasanul Haq Inu, Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim, Advocate Anisul Huq, Dr Dipu Moni, Advocate SM Rezaul Karim and Abdus Sobhan Golap.
Before entering Gono Bhaban, Awami League’s senior leader and presidum member Tofail Ahmed said there is no scope to accept any demand beyond the constitution.
WHAT ARE TODAY’S AGENDA?
In today's talks at the Gono Bhaban, the Oikyafront is likely to place proposals for dissolution of parliament before the polls and downsizing the Hasina-led cabinet to 20-22. It may also suggest inclusion of at least two Oikyafront leaders in her cabinet as technocrats, according to sources.
HOW WERE THE TALKS INITIATED?
Dr Kamal on behalf of the Oikyafront wrote to the PM on October 28, requesting her to hold talks. On October 30, the PM invited the alliance for talks at her official residence on November 1.
Bikalpadhara Bangladesh (BDB) President Dr AQM Badruddoza Chowdhury on October 30 wrote to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, also president of ruling Awami League, for talks over holding the upcoming general election in a free, fair and inclusive manner.
Jatiya Party Chairman HM Ershad also sent a letter to PM Hasina on October 31 to join talks over the upcoming election, and PM on the same day replied him with an invitation to sit for dialogue on November 5.
PM also invited the Left Democratic Alliance (LDA), a platform of the left-leaning parties, to sit for talks.
WHAT ARE OIKYAFRONT’S DEMANDS?
The 11-point goal announced by the alliance includes ensuring checks and balances in the state power, decentralisation of administration, freeing MPs from the stringent restrictions imposed on them under article 70 of the constitution, formation of a constitutional commission to make appointments to all constitutional and other important posts and full independence of the judiciary.
The alliance also announced a seven-point demand, including the one for holding the next parliamentary election under a nonpartisan government, dissolution of parliament before the polls and recasting the Election Commission.