Khaleda unveils Vision 2030
Bangladesh Nationalist Party chairperson Khaleda Zia on Wednesday unveiled her party’s detailed charter Vision 2030 pledging to balance ‘monolithic executive authority’ of the prime minister through necessary amendment to the constitution and to establish rule of law ensuring judicial oversight on the police.
In the 256-point Vision 2030 charter, unveiled at a press conference at Westin Hotel, Khaleda, however, backtracked on the pledge to establish a bicameral parliament as she pledged while placing essence of the charter in the 6th national conference and council session of BNP on March 19, 2016.
‘As part of the reforms of the current constitutional arrangement, it will be examined if Upper House of the Jatiya Sangsad may be established keeping the existing unitary character and structure of the constitution intact,’ read the charter.
Reading out the Vision 2030, Khaleda, also former prime minister, pledged to transform the country into high-middle-income country by 2030.
She said that BNP would implement the Vision 2030 after forming government in an election under an election-conducive government.
Talking to New Age after placing the charter, Khaleda said that they were working for preparing the framework of poll-time election-supportive government and it would be placed soon.
The party backtracked on its pledge to introduce bicameral parliament following majority members of BNP’s top policymaking body, standing committee, opposed it while the draft of the Vision 2030 was placed before its meeting on May 8.
At the outset of unveiling the full version of the charter, Khaleda said that the complete format of the vision 2030 was prepared through elaborate discussions with experts and at the party level in the past one year.
She said that still there was a scope of refining the charter with respect to opinion and advice from people.
Reading out the charter, she said, ‘BNP shall restore the provision of referendum in the constitution to reinstate the democratic right of the people.’
Leaders of BNP and its allies, pro-BNP professionals and foreign diplomats stationed in Dhaka, among others, were present at the unveiling event.
Khaleda elaborated the objectives of Vision 2030 to turn Bangladesh a happy, prosperous, modern and self-respecting nation in different chapters, including democracy, nation building, good governance, defence, foreign policy, moral re-armament, service-delivery, social safety network, Liberation War and Freedom Fighters, ‘terrorism, extremism and militancy’, economy, research and development, demographic dividend, education and human resource, ICT, sports, culture, overseas employment and expatriate welfare, media and freedom of expression, local government, peasants and agriculture, workers welfare, urbanisation and housing, safe food and medicine, health services, youth, women and children, climate change, water resources, blue economy and environmental protection, power and energy, industry, communication, tourism, conservation of resources, social pathological problem, earthquake disaster, Chittagong Hill Tracts and backwards areas and communal harmony.
‘Existing constitutional order vests all executive powers with the republic unilaterally in the hands of prime minister….This system is completely inconsistent with the recognised for of parliamentary system.,’ said the BNP chief.
‘Experience of the recent time made the people of the country deeply realised that the monolithic executive authority of the prime minister has created and authoritarian dictatorship with a parliamentary facade,’ she added.
She said the office of the Ombudsman would be established as per the constitution in order to ensure administrative accountability and transparency.
Referring to the 15th and 16th amendments to the constitution made by the ruling Awami League which abolished the election time caretaker government system and empowered parliament to remove Supreme Court judges respectively, Khaleda said ‘BNP shall make a review of these controversial and undemocratic articles or sections and bring necessary reforms to the constitution.’
She said that BNP would repeal all sorts of black laws and bring an end to all forms of inhuman physical and mental torture and extrajudicial killings.
She said that the Special Powers Act 1974 and Section 57 of the Information and Communication Technology Act would be repealed and universal declaration of human rights of the United Nations would be implemented.
About rule of law and independence of judiciary, the former prime minister said that the lower courts would be freed from the control of the executives and a separate secretariat would be established under the Supreme Court to ensure complete separation of the judiciary from the executives.
Khaleda said that a high level Judicial Commission would be formed to reform existing justice system, jury system in lower judiciary would be reintroduced on a pilot basis, village courts would be reformed and it would be examined to see whether traditional informal arbitration course could be introduced side by side with existing village courts.
She said that a law would be enacted for appointment of Supreme Court judges and the appointment would be made through a Select Committee and the Supreme Judicial Council.
On police administration, far reaching reform programme will be taken up for the police and public administration to ensure public safety, said Khaleda.
The police force will be turned into a accountable and welfare oriented public administration through ensuring judicial oversight on them, she said.
She said that BNP wanted to combine together 3Gs – good policy, good governance and good administration – ‘to reach the destination of democracy, justice and fair-play.’
About defence, the former prime minister said that the civil and military relations would be designed to be compatible with democratic dispensation.
On foreign policy, she said that BNP was firmly committed to uphold independence, sovereignty and dignity of Bangladesh.
BNP would not interfere in the internal affairs of any other country neither would create any security threat to any other country. ‘In the same vein BNP commits that strong resistance will be made if any other country interferes into internal affairs of Bangladesh and poses any threat to state security of Bangladesh,’ she said.
She said that in order to ensure food security for low-income people, government rationing system would be introduced.
A ‘Pension Fund’ will be created to ameliorate the sufferings of old people who had been engaged in private sector jobs, she said.
Khaleda said that BNP would declare every freedom fighter an ‘honoured citizen of the state’ and make a correct list of freedom fighters through a transparent process.
BNP would prepare a correct list of martyrs, she added.
She said that BNP would take stern measures against ‘terrorism, extremism and militancy’ and extremism would be uprooted from the soil of Bangladesh creating national unity and ensuring participation of people.
The BNP chief said that her party wanted to transform Bangladesh into a modern, democratic and high-middle-income country by 2030. Within this period, per capita income would be upgraded to $5000, she added.
She said that the power and supervisory role of the central bank would be upgraded to ensure discipline in the financial sector of the country. Banking division in the ministry of finance would be abolished, and the task of monitoring the nationalised banks would vest in the central bank.
She said that 5 per cent of the GDP would be spent in the education sector.
Khaleda said that elections to student bodies would be ensured in all universities including Dhaka University and other higher educational institutions to create future leaders from among the students.
About ICT, she said VOIP will be opened up.
A ‘Smart School’ will be established in every district so that these schools can serve the purpose of model technology demonstrator, she said.
Khaleda said that ‘undemocratic sections of laws relating to ICT and social media (Cyber Security Act, ICT Act, etc.) would be amended.
Modern national Olympic academy would be established in the country, she said, adding that national award would be given to sports people.
Bangladeshi expatriates would be included in the voter list to enable them cast their vote in national election to ensure their participation in running the state.
On media, she said that BNP would constitute a commission led by a former Supreme Court judge and renowned educationist, renowned citizen, IT specialist, and experienced journalist as members to frame a policy on Media.
About local government, she said that unless convicted by the court, the elected representatives of the local government would not be suspended or dismissed or removed by executive order.
Private sector would be given incentive to set up agro-processing industries, she said.
Health insurance would be introduced in phases while 5 per cent of GDP would be spent in health sector.
Unemployed educated youths would be given ‘Unemployment Allowance’ until they get employed, or wait up to one year to avail a job, whichever occurs earlier, Khaleda promised.
She said that the canal digging program initiated by slain president Ziaur Rahman would be reintroduced to resuscitate silted canals and rivers and derelict ponds and tanks.
Khaleda said that to meet the requirements of desired double-digit growth rate (considering approximate demand for 35,000MW power by 2030), BNP would take initiatives to generate optimal amount of electricity.
In order to end prevailing power and energy deficit and ensure long-term energy security, a well-coordinated national energy policy would be adopted, she added.
To ensure national energy security initiative would be taken to connect Bangladesh with the Gulf countries, Iran and Middle-east countries and Pakistan and India through inter-country gas line, she said.
‘Initiatives for establishing road and rail communication network with SAARC and ASEAN countries would be taken. Initiatives will also be taken to be connected with One Beld One Road initiative of China,’ the BNP chief said.
Electricity and Energy Rapid Supply Increase Act 2010 will be amended after due examination, she said.
The issue of Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant will be re examined, she added.
Khaleda said underground tunnels will be built under Karnaphully, Buriganga, Gomoti, Padma, Jamuna and Meghna rivers.
‘Realisation of our vision is difficult but not impossible. We strongly believe that the entire people of our country irrespective of cast and opinion shall extend their all-out support to realise this vision,’ Khaleda said.
Source: New Age
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