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It said, “BNP considers the decision to ban meetings and rallies in open space keeping the scope for indoor meetings and gatherings in the name of preventing the spread of Omicron as the government’s evil efforts to control normal political activities.”

Stating that World Health Organisation (WHO)’s statement that the Omicron of Covid-19 is less likely to spread in open space than the closed one, the meeting said it is an illogical decision to restrict, social, political and religious gatherings in open spaces by allowing the activities in places like hats, markets, shopping malls, schools and colleges.

The BNP policymakers said people had successfully held BNP’s rallies at different parts of the country resisting the unnecessary and conspiratorial obstructions by the government and the ruling party. “So, the government is using the Omicron and Covid-19 as a shield to thwart people's spontaneous resistive movement.”

Amid the spike in Covid cases due to the transmission of the Omicron variant, the government on Monday imposed various restrictions, including public gatherings, social programmes, political and religious events. The restrictions will be effective on 13 January.

The BNP standing committee meeting also criticised prime minister Sheikh Hasina as she in her recent address to the nation claimed that her government was elected by people’s votes.

It described Sheikh Hasina’s claim to have been elected by people’s votes as ‘’ridiculous and a low-quality joke’’.

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