Saturday, 02 Dec, 2023
Saturday, 02 Dec, 2023
The Daily Post

Door to discussion may open for polls

Sayed Saiful Islam

Door to discussion  may open for polls


  • The tone on both sides is a bit soft
  • Analysts see a concession mentality
  • Fear of conflict if talks are not resolved


The political arena is not melting on the issue of election-time government. The government and the opposition are on two poles on the issue. Everyone is sticking to their position. However, there is not much time left for the 12th election.

So we have to come to a solution to this. This is the expectation of the general public, election officials, political analysts, domestic and foreign diplomats, and senior politicians. The government has a commitment to make the election fair, and the opposition parties, including BNP, want the same, but there is a lack of trust between the two sides.

BNP does not want to believe that fair elections will be held under this government, they fear that the government may take action in the past even if it says now. On the other hand, the government is not in a hurry to give up power. Because the Awami League knows that a new interim government was formed after the jatiya party's founding chairman late Hussain Muhammad Ershad left power, but that government was in opposition to the national party during that time, so the government does not want to take risks by giving up power.

The opposition, including Awami League and BNP under a non-party government, are on the streets to hold the election under the auspices of the party government. In such a context, political analysts and civil society advocates have long urged both sides to sit down for dialogue to avoid confrontation and conflict. So far, the political parties have been seen to be indifferent to this issue, but now the tone seems a little soft to political analysts. They feel that with some concessions, both sides can have any talks and that is what is important now.

I spoke to several members of the Awami League presidium, BNP standing committee members and a member of the ruling party's advisory council yesterday. Talking to them, it was understood that there was a lot of flexibility when it came to negotiating to resolve the crisis. Civil society representatives also called for talks to resolve the crisis.

Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader and BNP standing committee member Amir Khasru Mahmud Chowdhury briefed reporters after holding separate meetings with the US pre-election observer team on Monday. Khalid Mohiuddin, chief journalist of the Bangla section of the German-based news agency DW, made an observation from what was said in the briefing.It also believes that both sides are seen to be flexible on dialogue to resolve the ongoing political crisis in Bangladesh. 

BNP standing committee member Selima Rahman said, "We have already said that we will not go to any election under Sheikh Hasina, fair voting is not possible under her. After resigning, there is no need to sit for talks, so the civil society representatives are calling for talks now to settle the opposition, in which case the BNP leader did not want to say anything about what to do, she only said, "We will get our talk and position in the newspapers." In other words, he did not rule out dialogue at all. On the other hand, Advocate Kamrul Islam, one of the members of the Awami League presidium, indicated the need for dialogue, but he still feels that there is no need for dialogue. "Civil society representatives talk a lot, they talk about dialogue, but there is no need for dialogue right now.

In other words, he's not completely eliminating the need for dialogue. Awami League Advisory Council member and former Vice-Chancellor of Rajshahi University Professor Dr Abdul Khaleque also did not rule out the need for dialogue. "BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir is saying that they have made a mistake by holding dialogue in the past. In that case, what is the use of talking about dialogue, he said while talking to this reporter of the Daily Post , BNP is the opposition to the government, they have to realize this first. Talking to this reporter, civil society representative and political analyst Dr Badiul Alam Majumder said that if the crisis is not resolved through dialogue, the country will face conflict. The situation will not be favorable, it will get worse.

Meanwhile, journalist Khaled Muhiuddin said, "My lesson from the meeting of Awami League and BNP with the US pre-election observer team is that very soon we may see dialogue or discussion between Awami League and BNP. He also did some analysis of how he felt that way. After the meeting with the Americans, Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader told the journalists, "They said whether any solution to compromise and adjustment can be found? Then we said there has to be room for compromise and adjustment.

The BNP did not keep that space. They've bucked that space. They (BNP) want the prime minister to resign. We have said that elections are held under a caretaker government, they will not say so. They say it's a fair election. The BNP leader's statement is clear that they want a fair election with the international community as a witness, if foreigners, especially Americans, give guarantees, they may come to the election, and for this, they will do some 'compromise' if necessary, so there can be a dialogue or discussion.