New alliance likely to hold rallies across country in Oct

Salman Tareque Sakil
Published : 22:02, Oct 14, 2018 | Updated : 23:04, Oct 14, 2018

(From left to right) BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, Oikya Prokriya leader and Gano Forum chief Dr Kamal Hossain, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal-JSD chief ASM Abdur Rab, BNP Standing Committee member Moudud Ahmed and Jukto Front Member Secretary and Nagorik Oikya Convenor Mahmudur Rahman Manna at a media briefing in Dhaka on Saturday (Oct 13). FILE PHOTOThe new political coalition, which rolled out a seven-point demand including neutral and non-partisan administration for the election, is likely to hold rallies across Bangladesh in this month.
After weeks of talks and intense negotiations, the BNP, Gano Forum chief Dr Kamal Hossain-led Jatiya Oikya Prokriya, ASM Abdur Rab’s Jatiya Samajtantrik Dala (JSD) and Mahmudur Rahman Manna’s Nagorik Oikya formally launched an alliance styled ‘Jatiya Oikya Front’ on Saturday, just months before the general election.
During a media call at the National Press Club, it also unveiled an 11-point goal promising to bring sweeping reforms in governance system if voted to power.
AQM Badruddoza Chowdhury-led Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh, however, has been left out.
A former president, B Chowdhury floated the Jukto Front coalition last year with JSD and Nagorik Oikya, who are part of the new coalition but yet to spell out clearly on the status of their ties with Bikalpa Dhara.
Meanwhile, in a separate press conference the same day, Chowdhury said they are not with the new coalition as the BNP did not sever ties with Jamaat-e-Islami. The party also said that it will be not part of a move ‘to bring the BNP back in power’.
Dr Kamal Hossain, however, said before the media on Saturday that they hope that the Bikalpa Dhara would also join the new alliance later.
Several leaders of the new alliance Jatiya Oikya Front say that dropping B Chowdhury has brought a respite in the new coalition.
They said the priority for the allies now was to complete the negotiations for elections and after being elected, except for the BNP, which wants to delay it as part of a strategy.
Internal negotiations or not, the Jatiya Oikya Front is likely to sit within a day or two to decide on its next course of plan.
“We may go for rallies in all the districts across Bangladesh. I believe we will be able to announce programmes scheduled after the Durga Puja,” Dr Kamal Hossain told Bangla Tribune on Sunday.
Senior BNP leader Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain said they would decide on the next move in a meeting of the new coalition.
“I am not aware of any decision scheduling the next meeting,” the member of BNP’s policymaking National Standing Committee told Bangla Tribune on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Bikalpa Dhara chief B Chowdhury is likely to call a meeting of his party’s leadership on Tuesday to decide the next move.
“We are trying for an actual national unity and hope to come up with that before the nation very soon,” Mahi, B Chowdhury’s son and the party’s joint secretary general, said on Saturday.
According to people familiar with the matter, Bikalpa Dhara has been in touch with BNP leaders, known as reformists, and mulling the possibility of getting them as well as other political parties on board.