B Chy's Jukta Front positive about joining polls: Quader

B Chy’s Jukta Front positive about joining polls: Quader

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Dhaka, Nov 2 – Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader on Friday night said they found Jukta Front, led by Dr AQM Badruddoza Chowdhury, positive in the talks about joining the next general election as Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has accepted their many demands. Briefing reporters about the outcome of the dialogue between the 14-party alliance and Jukta Front at Ganobhaban, he also said B Chowdhury did not make any demand for amending the Constitution.
Quader said there were constructive and positive discussions, and 20 out of 21 Jukta Front delegation members spoke there. “They all made positive statements. We’ve accepted their many demands. But, they didn’t place any demand for an amendment to the constitution.”
Asked whether they think Jukta Front will join the polls under the current system of government, Quader said, “We found them positive about it.”
He said they endorsed Jukta Front’s demand for creating a level playing field and complying with election code of conduct after the announcement of the election schedule.
The ruling party general secretary said B Chowdhury’s alliance demanded either dissolving parliament or making it inactive. “As parliament has been prorogued, now it’s inactive.”
He said they also partly accepted Jukat Front’s demand for reducing the power of the government since all powers go to the Election Commission (EC) after the announcement of the election schedule.
Quader said B Chowdhury’s alliance demanded deployment of the army with magistracy power during the election. “We’ve said the army will surely be deployed but of course as a striking force.”
He said the alliance also voiced their opposition against the use of Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) in the election. “We told them the Election Commission may use it in a limited scale. We also told them the EC is under the President, not under the government. The Prime Minister said she would talk about it with the President.”
Quader said Jukta Front demanded the release before the election of those who arrested for political reasons. “The Prime Minister asked them to present a specific list of political prisoners to me (Quader) and then she’ll take steps in this regard after an investigation.”
A day after her discussion with Dr Kamal Hossain-led Jatiya Oikyafront, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina sat in talks with Jukta Front in the evening over the next general election.
Sheikh Hasina led a 14-party delegation at the dialogue while Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh (BDB) President and Jukta Front Chairman Dr AQM Badruddoza Chowdhury a 21-member team.
The Jukta Front delegation members included BDB secretary general Maj (retd) Abdul Mannan, its presidium members Shamsher Mobin Chowdhury, Golam Sarwar Milon, Abdur Rouf Mannan, Mohammad Yousuf, vice president Mahmuda Chowdhury, former MP HM Golam Reza, BLDP president Nazimuddin Al Azad, its general secretary Delwar Hossain, Bangladesh NAP chairman Jebel Rahman Gani, its secretary general M Golam Mostafa Bhuiyan, National Democratic Party (NDP) chairman Khandaker Golam Mortuza, and Janata Party President Sheikh Asaduzzaman.
Bdnews reported, “We are very happy that we could clearly say everything we had in mind. Based on that (Jukto Front speech), we agreed to some of the points,” Badruddoza said while leaving the prime minister’s residence after the around three hours of talks around 10:45 pm on Friday.
“They have apparently accepted our points,” the Bikalpadhara Bangladesh president said when asked whether the talks held ahead of the parliamentary elections were successful.
“The dialogue went very well. We will contest in the elections with this government in power,” Bikalpadhara Secretary General Abdul Mannan said.
When the journalists pointed out that the Jukto Front’s key demand was a nonpartisan election-time government, Mannan said, “Of course that’s our demand. But we will contest in the elections.”
UNB adds: On Thursday night, the Awami League-led 14-party alliance and Jatiya Oikyafront had marathon discussions at Ganobhaban over the next general election.
Awami League President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina led a 23-member 14-party delegation while Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain a 20-member Jatiya Oikyafront team in the talks.
On Tuesday, Prime Minister and Awami League President Sheikh Hasina invited B Chowdhury to join the talks at Ganobhaban as he sent a letter to her seeking talks over the next polls. – UNB

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