BNP secretary general addressing the rally commemorating Mahila Dal's 45th founding anniversary
Suvra Kanti Das

BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir has termed the statement made by the Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov during his Dhaka visit as alarming. He said, Bangladesh is being used as a battleground of the big powers and the government is responsible for that.

Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir was speaking at an event commemorating the 45th founding anniversary of Mahila Dal today, Friday.

The Russian foreign minister is in Dhaka on a 24 hour visit. He addressed a joint press briefing yesterday, Thursday, along with the foreign minister.

Speaking about this visit, Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir said, "It is most alarming that from the statements that the Russian foreign minister made after his arrival, it is clear that Bangladesh has become a battleground for the big powers to exert their sphere of influence. The present government is responsible for this. They speak irresponsibly and push Bangladesh to the brink of an alarming situation."

Saying that they want an election, the BNP secretary general said, "We too want an election, but an unbiased one where everyone will be able to cast their votes. In the past two elections under this government, the people did not have their voting rights."

Mirza Fakhrul went on to say, "There will be no elections under this government." He said, this government had destroyed democracy in order to cling on to power.

The BNP secretary general said, our mothers and sister are in distress. The price of essentials has shot up so high that they are struggling to run their families. Dengue has taken on proportions of an epidemic and the government cannot manage the situation. They are here to loot the country, not to serve the people.

Calling upon Mahila Dal to take an oath, he said, this government must be removed and the rule of people established. We do not want conflict or chaos. We want to create a free democratic environment in the country. No one is safe in this country. The fall of this government is inevitable.

Speaking at the event, BNP's standing committee member Selima Rahman said, "The misrule of government has pushed the women of this country into the darkness. Leaders and activists of Mahila Dal are being repressed all over the country."

Mahila Dal president Afroza Abbas said that women now are the most oppressed. Their backs have been pushed against the wall. They must face retribution.

Mahila Dal general secretary Sultana Ahmed conducted the event. Also speaking on the occasion were the organisation's joint general secretary Helen Zarin Khan and vice president Yasmin Huq.