People rejected BNP through ballot: Obaidul Quader

Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader addressed the press conference at the end of the voting to the 12th parliamentary elections on SundayProthom Alo

Awami League (AL) general secretary and road transport and bridges minister Obaidul Quader on Sunday claimed no one responded to the call of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) of boycotting the parliamentary election. Rather the people have boycotted BNP.

Quader further stated that they (BNP) tried to thwart the polls, but the people rejected them through the ballots.

The AL general secretary was addressing a media conference over the party’s reflections on the just concluded polls at the office of Dhaka city Awami League in the capital’s Tejgaon Sunday evening.

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Obaidul Quader said although the BNP-Jamaat alliance didn’t join the polls, they adopted a very violent approach through sabotage and arson. They have kept doing the same since 28 October last year to this day.

Earlier, BNP tried to thwart the polls by boycotting it and unleashing violent activities, including killing, setting fire to polling centres and vehicles and blockades during the 10th national polls in 2013-14. They were involved in violence despite taking part in the polls during the 11th general elections.

Obaidul Quader further said that the BNP has got entangled in the cycle of evil politics. Their politics involves killing, destroying national properties and doing harm to the nation. People have rejected them by taking part in the polls.

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“As per the information we have so far, it can certainly be said that the Awami League led by Sheikh Hasina will win the polls by huge margins in most of the constituencies. Today is the day of democratic victory. We are grateful to the people of the country the most,” the bridges minister said.

Challenge of holding the election peacefully

Obaidul Quader said holding elections peacefully was a big challenge. The election was held in a free, fair and peaceful environment after overcoming a lot of difficulties and obstructions. Prime minister Sheikh Hasina has proven that it is possible to hold a credible election as per the constitution of the country through a neutral and independent election commission under a partisan government.

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Negligible level of violence

Addressing the press conference, Obaidul Quader said, “We never wanted violence in the polls. However, there were reports of violence in 37 of the 42,000 polling centres, which is negligible.

He further said the way to judge whether the election was successful or not is to verify whether there was a free and fair voting environment or not. And we have seen that the citizens have cast their votes freely and no one obstructed them. It is evident from the media reports as well.”

‘100 per cent perfect democracy doesn’t exist anywhere’

Obaidul Quadser further said, “Democratic practices vary from country to country. A 100 per cent perfect democracy doesn’t exist anywhere. The political situation here is quite complex as the anti-liberation forces are still active in the country. We hope everyone keeps this in mind while commenting on our political situation and elections.”

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