BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir has described the imposition of the US visa policy as 'insulting and humiliating' for the nation and held the government solely responsible for the current situation.
“The Awami League government has placed Bangladesh in confrontation with the global community,” he said while talking to Prothom Alo on Saturday.
Explaining his stance, the BNP secretary general said the government has destroyed the electoral system, snatched the people's right of expression, and resorted to continued human rights violations. Besides, the opposition is being subjected to arbitrary arrest and torture.
All these issues have prompted some countries, including the United States, to take different types of measures, he added.
The US had introduced a visa policy for Bangladesh on 24 May in an effort to ensure a free and fair election here. Four months later, the US state department announced the imposition of the policy on those deemed responsible for obstructing the democratic electoral process, including members of law enforcement agencies, ruling and opposition parties.
However, the leaders of BNP, the de facto opposition, said they are not concerned about the visa policy. Instead, they argued that it is a matter of concern for those in power as the responsibility for the current situation squarely lies with them.
Mirza Fakhrul expressed disappointment as the country has now faced a visa restrictions on the question of a free and fair election, though it has been 52 years since independence.
“Our country does not deserve this. The government is solely responsible for this, while the opposition, including the BNP, is not responsible for this,” he added.
However, the BNP secretary general sees the US government's move as a positive development. He said the Biden administration is promoting democracy globally, and from this point of view, they took a step in favour of democracy in Bangladesh.
Mirza Fakhrul contended that the US has done its part, and the responsibility for ensuring free and fair elections now rests with the government.
Meanwhile, the BNP will continue its anti-government movement with the participation of the people, he added.