BNP gears up ‘Iftar politics’ over budget

Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) has suddenly become ‘active’ heating up the country’s political field over the proposed budget for the 2017-18 fiscal year.

BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia and her party colleagues, including secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, are now attacking the present government over the ‘anti-people’ budget at iftar-parties.

“People irrespective of party affiliation are not happy with the budget. It is not a pro-people budget.
So, BNP should campaign against it,” a senior party leader said.

BNP has got an issue over the budget and the party is campaigning against it to draw public support against the government ahead of the next parliament polls, sources said.

Addressing an iftar mahfil at the International Convention City Bashundhara (ICCB) on Wednesday, Khaleda Zia said only ruling party men will benefit from the budget.

The new budget will take a heavy toll on the common people of the country, she added.

The BNP chief has delivered speeches at four iftar-party parties where she bitterly criticized the government for, what she said, placing an anti-people budget.

BNP sources said Khaleda till Thursday hosted iftars for orphans and alem-ulema at city’s Eskaton, for foreign diplomats at Hotel Westin, for party leaders leaders at Nabarattri Hall of the ICCB and for professionals at the same venue.

She has already attended three seperate iftar parties hosted by Association of Engineers Bangladesh (AEB), Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and Naional Democratic Party (NDP).

It is learnt from sources at BNP chairperson’s office that she (Khaleda Zia) is scheduled to attend at least 10-12 more iftar parties till the 26th Ramadan.

Insiders said BNP central command already has directed different units and all front and associate organisations to arrange iftar parties across the country to improve relations with party men and people ahead of the next polls.

“Iftar party is an opportunity for campaigning. It is easier to hold such programmes as the administration doesn’t allow us to hold political programmes,” said a BNP leader.

He further said that through holding iftar programmes, BNP is rejuvenating the party leaders and activists and building relations with the people across the country.

Party’s nomination aspirants are also launching personal campaign by arranging Iftar parties, he added.

Asked whether their current activities are the preparation for the national polls, BNP standing committee member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain told daily sun “Since we do politics, we have to work as per necessity of time.”

About their next plan after Ramadan, he said, “Of course, we have certain plan. Our all activities are on the next polls. We will compel the government to hold election under a neutral administration.”

The BNP leader further said they will take timely decision about their movement and the next national election.

Insiders said BNP wants to continue campaign against the new national budget.

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