- PM Shared personal challenges faced, including lack of justice for parents’ killings
- PM urges world to mobilize collective strength to prevent genocide
- Expressed distress at escalating casualties, particularly innocent children in Gaza
- Strongly criticized violent acts by BNP leaders
- Accused Ziaur Rahman’s family of brutality and corruption
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has issued a stern warning to her party members, urging them to remain vigilant against attempts to sabotage the forthcoming 12th parliamentary elections through violent disruptions. Addressing a gathering in Kotalipara during her visit to Gopalganj, she called on ruling party loyalists in rural areas to take a stand against ‘pyro-terrorists’ amid daily reports of arson attacks during the BNP’s blockades.
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Representing the Tungipara-Kotalipara constituency, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina condemned the violence instigated by opposition factions, citing it as a deliberate strategy aimed at derailing the electoral process. She highlighted what she perceives as a lack of effective leadership within the BNP, asserting, “They believed there would be no election this time. But the election is happening.”
Despite the country’s anticipation for the upcoming Jatiya Sangsad election on January 7, BNP and Jamaat-e-Islami persist in conducting arson attacks on public transports and offices. People are eager for an election that allows Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to sustain her work for the country’s progress.
Addressing Political Lineage and Achievements
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina recently voiced strong condemnation against the violent acts orchestrated by BNP leaders. The focal point of her criticism was a recent incident where a policeman faced a brutal attack, prompting her dismay at such actions and raising concerns about the country’s state under such leadership. She drew parallels between their tactics and those she associated with Israel’s approach, expressing distress at the escalating casualties, especially innocent children. Accusing the opposition of adopting violent strategies, she expressed deep concern about the direction in which the country was heading.
She suggested that the opposition might be adopting violent strategies, drawing comparisons to Israel’s tactics, leading to bloodshed in the name of their movement.
Addressing Ziaur Rahman’s family, PM Hasina criticized Khaleda Zia’s son Tarique Rahman going back on a promise made in 2007 to refrain from politics, alleging his involvement in issuing lethal orders. She likened their family to a lineage of violence, accusing them of seizing power unlawfully and suppressing dissenters, while amassing considerable wealth.
Highlighting her administration’s accomplishments, Hasina contrasted the progress made during her tenure since 1996 with setbacks during BNP-Jamaat’s governance. She emphasized their success in ensuring food security and achieving developing country status, underscoring the initial challenges faced by Bangladesh’s founding father, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib, upon starting the nation’s journey with limited resources.
Recognizing the Genocide
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina delivered a resounding call to the international community, emphasizing the imperative of collective action in preventing genocide and related atrocities. On the International Day of Commemoration and Dignity of the Victims of the Crime of Genocide, she reaffirmed Bangladesh’s unwavering commitment to thwarting such crimes. Reflecting on Bangladesh’s history, she underscored the harrowing genocidal campaign unleashed in 1971 by Pakistan occupation forces, an event that claimed the lives of three million innocent civilians and displaced millions more.
“Our commitment to the prevention and punishment of the crime of genocide stems from our own painful history,” she added.
PM Hasina highlighted Bangladesh’s proactive measures in holding accountable the perpetrators of the 1971 genocide as a testament to their dedication to justice and prevention efforts. She urged global support for recognizing the 1971 genocide and echoed concern over ongoing acts of genocide worldwide, citing examples like Israeli aggression in Gaza and the plight of Rohingya Muslims.
Emphasizing the responsibility to prevent genocide, she urged heightened efforts to create safe conditions for Rohingya return in Myanmar. Furthermore, she expressed alarm over the rise of xenophobia, racism, and hate speech targeting ethnic and religious minorities globally, posing grave risks of genocide.
“We are also concerned by the surge of xenophobia, racism, and hate speech against ethnic and religious minorities in various parts of the world that are posing vulnerable people at severe risks of genocide,” she added.
Recounting a Journey Back Home
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s remarkable leadership was highlighted, acknowledging her resilience in the face of personal tragedy and her unwavering commitment to the populace, marking an extraordinary transformative journey.
Sheikh Hasina’s return to Bangladesh in 1981 was driven by her dedication to carry on Bangabandhu’s legacy. After enduring a 15-year struggle, she revitalized Bangabandhu’s unfinished socioeconomic programs upon assuming power in 1996. Despite setbacks in 2001, her comeback to office in 2009 heralded a series of infrastructure and developmental achievements, positioning Bangladesh as an exemplar among developing nations.
Reflecting on her return to Bangladesh in 1981, Sheikh Hasina reminisced about the affection and support received from the people and Mujib Adarsh soldiers. Despite challenges upon her return, she lamented the lack of justice for her parents’ brutal killers due to an Indemnity Ordinance that shielded them from prosecution and even rewarded them with embassy positions.
During a Liberation War commemoration, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina emphasized the atrocities of 1971—mass killings, arson, looting, and appalling abuses against women. She recalled Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s attempts to initiate trials against the war criminals, only to witness the trials dismissed and the perpetrators released, some even ascending to high-ranking government roles.
PM Hasina revealed the discouragement she faced when considering her return to Bangladesh, with many advising against it. However, propelled by her heartfelt conviction, she returned, supported by her younger sister Rehana’s assurance to care for the children while she fought for justice in the country.
Gratitude and Future Aspirations
Expressing gratitude to her constituency in Kotalipara and the people of Bangladesh, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina attributed her success in various fields to their unwavering support. Looking forward, she stressed the importance of disciplined elections and the need to follow established norms, citing efforts to ensure the permanence of such practices.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s recent remarks encapsulate not just condemnation and criticism but also a narrative of personal perseverance, national progress, and aspirations for a disciplined, prosperous future for Bangladesh. Her words resonate not only with her political stance but also with the struggles and triumphs of a nation striving for stability and growth.