Prime Minister and ruling Awami League president Sheikh Hasina on Saturday said her government has been working to ensure human rights for every person.
“It’s our target to ensure human rights for every person and we’re marching the country ahead with keeping that in mind,” she said.
The prime minister was addressing an introductory speech while presiding over the AL national committee meeting held at the Prime Minister’s official residence, Ganabhaban, in the capital in the evening.
She heavily criticised the people who are talking about human rights and searching for democracy through binocular, saying they (the so-called eminent persons) have forgotten that Ziaur Rahman had initiated the culture of enforced disappearance and killings in absence of justice and democracy in the country.
Sheikh Hasina also said the so-called intellectuals always prefer the government of military dictators as they get privilege during that period.
“We believe in justice. Ziaur Rahman had initiated the culture of impunity. We have established justice by freeing Bangladesh from that culture,” she added.
Only Awami League has ensured democracy and established voting rights in the country. Except the AL, which party had protected the rights of people in such a good way?
The prime minister said Bangladesh would march towards the prosperity with the power of the masses and none can hinder it.
“The people are the main source of our power. Bangladesh will march ahead with the power of the people. None can hinder the journey towards the prosperity,” she added.
Bangladesh, she said, has become a county of miracle before the world due to continuation of democracy and development.
“Only Awami League has ensured democracy and established voting rights in the country,” she said. “Except the AL, which party had protected the rights of people in such a good way?” she asked.
Sheikh Hasina further said the entire world has been going through a crisis due to the coronavirus and Russia-Ukraine war, adding that her government has been working sincerely to overcome the ongoing crisis.
She reiterated her call to the countrymen to show austerity in using water, gas and electricity and make savings to face the crisis.
Let me ask them (the critics), where is the lack of democracy
The AL’s national committee was held as part of the preparation of the party’s 22nd national council to be held at historic Suhrawardi Udyan on 24 December.
Members of the national committee, including from 78 organisational districts and central AL leaders, were present at the meeting.
Road Transport and Bridges Minister and Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader was also present at the programme.
Sheikh Hasina said a vested quarter is in hot pursuit in destroying the country’s democracy only for attaining their personal gains.
“The vested quarter is claiming time and again that there is no democracy in Bangladesh. They are making such comments aimed at getting attention during emergency and military regimes. They are basically trying to destroy the country’s democratic system for their personal interest,” she said.
The prime minister came down heavily on them who said there is no democracy, saying, “Let me ask them, where is the lack of democracy.”
She said that vote rigging, terrorism and militancy, which were common phenomenon during the BNP-Jamaat regime are the synonyms of democracy to the vested quarter.
“I believe that power of the people is the biggest strength and trust and confidence of the people are the biggest strength,” she said.
The AL president said that as AL is in power for 14 years following the democratic process. That’s why Bangladesh has achieved tremendous development and become as the role model for development in the world, she added.
The prime minister said let me ask them, who are searching for democracy using binocular, one question, where was the democracy in the country except three and half years of the Father of the Nation and other years under AL regime?
She continued that all powers were kept captive in the cantonment during the regimes of Ziaur Rahman, Ershad and Khaleda Zia.
“The country was ruled from cantonment at that time then where was the democracy or the power of the people?” she questioned.