Fakhrul made the remarks while distributing warm clothes among the destitute under Banani Flyover arranged by Arpan Bangladesh, a voluntary organisation, in the evening.

Replying to a question, the BNP leader said their party had a decision earlier not to engage in any talks over the election.

“As we still didn’t get any invitation letter from the president, we haven’t yet taken any decision on the dialogue,” he added.

Fakhrul appreciated Arpan president Bithika Binte Hossain, wife of late Swechchasebak Dal president Shafiul Bari Babu, for arranging the event.

He said Arpan has long been distributing relief among the poor people every year, and providing assistance to the family members of those who have been subjected to repression, killing and enforced disappearance by the current “autocratic regime”.

Earlier on Monday, president Abdul Hamid initiated a dialogue with registered political parties on reconstitution of the election commission (EC) with the first meeting with Jatiya Party at Bangabhaban.

The five-year tenure of the incumbent commission, led by chief election commissioner KM Nurul Huda, will expire on 14 February next.

In December 2016, president Abdul Hamid had a series of talks with the registered political parties over the EC’s reconstitution that began with the first meeting with a delegation of BNP.

The new election commission to be formed by the president through a search committee after the talks will have to arrange the 12th national election within November 2023 to January 2024.

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