Two things could be assessed from the situation. Firstly, there is no coordination between the highest and grassroots levels of the ruling party. That’s why the local level leaders are doing the exact opposite of what the highest policymakers have been deciding. That means the grassroots levels are not listening to the highest policymakers of the ruling party.

Secondly, the government actually gave the message (of not obstructing rallies and meetings) to confuse the opposition. As was said before the 2014 Jatiya Sangsad (national parliament) elections, that the election is being held just for the sake of constitutional obligation. Later, it was seen that was a strategy. It would be unwarranted if once again the government says one thing and does another.

The opposition parties have been struggling for survival. Rallies are one of the most important ways to build a link with the people. They must be given this opportunity. If attacks on the opposition continue this way and they do not budge from the “field”, they will be able to garner more sympathy of the people. But if they break under pressure, people’s will lose confidence in them.

Tolerance is necessary especially in the current political scenario in the country. For this the goodwill of the government is extremely necessary. Otherwise it would be worrisome for the future. This will remain as a bad precedence for democratic practice.

* Professor Mahbub Ullah is a political analyst

** The analysis, originally published in the print and online edition of Prothom Alo, has been rewritten by Shameem Reza