Begum Zia’s arrest next on the card

Mohammad Ali Sattar

Now that the nation is on a roller coaster ride, we need to take a closer look at things that’s surfacing every day. While the death toll from petrol bombing is rising, the party activists and non-activists are also getting killed under suspicious conditions.

The law enforcing agencies comes up with speckled explanation in defending their actions when the question of cross-fires or shootout arises. There are complaints galore by the family members of the police victims that they were picked up by plain clothes men and later found dead.
So death grips us in all ways. Meanwhile, the ongoing debate in various platforms across the country has been inconclusive, to say the worst.
Adding to the woes is the postponement of the SSC exams. The hartal called by the BNP and allies will have an impact over 1.5 million examinees. The party might decide not to run hartal on Fridays and Saturdays to allow exams to be held.

Debates are getting confused
The debaters, these days are getting confused and found groping for words when asked about a possible solution to the present political impasse.
What are BNP and the allies thinking? The current situation seems that the opposition party will not budge from its demands. It felt heavily deceived by the present government when it backtracked on its pledges of arranging another national election immediately after the January 5 polls in 2014.
The AL leaders, including the PM, had declared that this poll was only to uphold the conditional clause and that dialogue may be held with the opposition polls to 11th parliament.
When hopes were dashed and there was no response from the government quarters, BNP and allies planned for an effective measure to compel the government for a dialogue.
They tried to create public opinion and sporadic movements. But the government response to these was rather quick and tough. There was outright rejection of the dialogue proposal from the government side. It is not true that the due to present violence, allegedly committed by the BNP activists, the government is unwilling sit for a discussion with the BNP.
In fact, AL government has been rejecting the dialogue offer ever since it came to power. The current situation is only a perilous extension of the rejection syndrome.
One is still perplexed, as to why the government had to be so rigid with the opposition. Insiders say, AL leaders were still tolerant to some of the BNP men, but soon after Tarique’s remarks about Bangobondhu they went wild. May be that was the point when AL decided to shut all doors for a talk.
But some quarters see more than this. They believe that Begum Zia’s and BNPs popularity had driven the government to think otherwise. They thought that by all means this party ought to be halted by any means. They have managed to manufacture excuses for the stern measures taken against the party. Gradually the grips tightened.

Govt. pressurizing to arrest Khaleda
BNP insiders say the top BNP leadership was not delivering. Serious deliberations have been taking place inside the Gulshan office regarding the roles of the senior leaders. By now things have become clear as to the ability and willingness of the senior leaders across the country.
Obviously, the top leader would have to come up with an alternative. There may be changes galore in the BNP lineup. Begum Zia may be thinking hard of changing the whole leadership ring.
Amidst the choking condition BNP and allies carried out sporadic activities and meetings. There was naturally huge response. The huge congregation at each meeting venue might have caused some sort of panic in the government circle.
They surmised that if BNP is allowed to continue these rallies and meetings – this might not auger well for the AL. Over the last one month situation took a serious turn. BNP chairperson remains behind closed doors, the death of her son and later events also did not help much to bring about a peaceful solution.
Some quarters thought that PM’s aborted visit to Begum Zia’s office to pay condolences might have created an opportunity for thawing of the ice. But most people say without sincerity nothing would have happened. And there is no sincerity.
The point of concern is: a section of the society is calling for a meaningful dialogue (which BNP too wants) but the AL leaders have been more aggressive and demanding formal arrest of Begum Zia for her alleged role in instigating the current violence.
With almost all the major opposition leaders behind bars, there might be an attempt to take Begum Zia in formal custody because a ground and perception is being created to make things look simple for the law enforcers to detain her.

Source: Weekly Holiday


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