Hours after collecting three party nomination papers for their chairperson, BNP senior leaders on Monday met Khaleda Zia in jail and took her blessings as the party formally started their election journey after long 10 years.
“Madam (Khaleda) blessed us. She hopes we’ll be able to move ahead with the people’s unity we’ve forged,” said BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir. The BNP leader came up with the remarks after meeting Khaleda Zia at Nazimuddin Road Old Central Jail.
Earlier, Fakhrul along with party standing committee members Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain, Moudud Ahmed, Jamiruddin Sircar and Mirza Abbas entered the jail around 2:40 pm and met Khaleda. They came out of the jail nearly 90 minutes later.Replying to a questioned, Fakhrul said they did not talked about election and political issues with her.
However, party insiders said the senior leaders discussed various issues relating to election with Khaleda and sought her guidelines about seat shearing with the party’s two alliances and giving nomination to party aspirants.
They took her opinion about BNP’s decision on joining the polls and future course of action.The five senior BNP also talked about her release and participation in the election as three nomination papers were bought for her, the party insiders claimed.
Earlier in the day, the party formally started selling its nomination papers to those who want to contest the next general election with the party’s election symbol ‘Sheaf of Paddy’.The sale nomination paper began at BNP’s Nayapaltan central office at 10:45 am with the purchase of two nomination papers for its Chairperson Khaleda Zia.
BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir purchased a nomination form for Khaleda Zia to contest the polls from Feni-1 while BNP standing committee member Nazrul Islam Khan collected another form for her for Bogura-6 constituency.
Later, BNP leader Mirza Abbas bought another form for Khaleda Zia to contest the polls from Bogura-7 constituency.Though the nomination papers were bought for her, it is still not clear whether Khaleda can contest the election as she was convicted in two corruption cases.
Earlier on Sunday, BNP’s two alliances –Jatiya Oikyafront and 20-Praty– announced to participate in the upcoming 11th parliamentary elections as part of their movement to restore democracy, and demanded the election be deferred by one month.