Political Crisis in Bangladesh

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Post by iftikhar Wed Feb 18, 2015 3:58 pm

Although our present crisis just over a year old, it’s useful to review some landmark events to get a better perspective of the present situation.

In February 1991 Bangladesh had the most credible election in its history. That election came after eight-year dictatorial rule by HM Ershad (a former Army Chief) and his Jatiya Party/JP (National Party). Bangladesh Awami League/AL (Bangladesh National League) & Bangladesh Nationalist Party/BNP, the two mainstream parties, along with some left-wing parties, students’ organizations, trade unions and cultural organizations waged a combined movement that saw the end of Ershad.

The then Chief Justice was installed as the caretaker President and 10 eminent citizens were chosen as the caretaker government. BNP won the election and went on to rule for five years. Two interesting things happened during this period.
1. Constitution was changed to revert to Parliamentary System
2. Constitution was changed to abolish the Caretaker System

Changes in constitution require two-third support in the Parliament and BNP & AL joined hands to bring those changes.

By late 1995 AL started to demand reinstalling the Caretaker System during election time. BNP flatly refused that and went for election in February (I guess) 1996 which all noteworthy political parties boycotted. Political unrest, which had already erupted in late 1995, turned for the worst. BNP swallowed the bitter-pill and reinstalled the Caretaker System and handed-over power to the caretaker administration in March (I guess) 1996. We experienced a short-lived military-coup (by Army Chief) during this administration. However, fresh election was held in June 1996 which AL won.

The October 2001 election was held under the Caretaker System and BNP won a two-third majority. By 2006 AL was protesting once more. They claimed although BNP has kept the Caretaker System (they could change that, mind it), they have assigned loyal people at key positions so that the caretaker administration is favorable to BNP. After months of political chaos we had a coup in January 2007.

The military regime
1. Installed a caretaker government
2. Banned all political activities
3. Jailed all major political leaders
4. Tried to incubate a political party, twice

Election was held in December 2008 in which AL and its allies won three-fourth of the seats. AL then went on to abolish the Caretaker System despite huge protest across the political (sans AL and its cronies) & social spectrum. The last two years of AL government saw a rejuvenated BNP (and its notorious ally Bangladesh Jamat-e Islami/BJI) sweeping aside AL and its allies in local elections. By early 2013 BNP started demanding reinstallation of Caretaker System for election due in December.

AL organized a farce of an election in January 2014. All major opposition parties boycotted the election. To resist a BNP-led opposition, AL opted a two-pronged strategy:
1. AL or allied candidates were declared uncontested winners in 149 out of 300 parliamentary seats. Alternative AL, allied or nominal candidates were either coerced or bribed to step down. Not a single vote was casted in these seats.
2. In the remaining 151 seats voting was marred by extreme irregularities. Not only party members, members of Police and Civil Administration were involved in voter coercion, vandalism, vote-buying and fake voting.

Now we enter the final chapter. January 5, 2015 is the first anniversary of that farcical election. BNP and its allies (only BJI to be precise) is enforcing non-stop blockade since January 5. Although situation is resemblance some sort of normality inside Dhaka and other major cities, rest of the country and countryside is experiencing havoc. Some atrocities committed by both the sides include:
1. Fire-bombing (BJI b******s) of vehicles
2. Around 100 people have been killed or critically injured in these attacks
3. Enforcing blockade & strikes during school-final examinations
4. Enforcing blockade & strikes on food & medicine carrying vehicles
5. Keeping BNP chief locked-up in her office since Jan 5
6. Occasional cutting-off of food & utilities supply to BNP chief’s office
7. Arrest of all major leaders of BNP
8. Activating death-squad (police) killings
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Post by Guest Tue Mar 03, 2015 4:05 am

My old coworker Avijit was killed there last week. Apparently he was a popular activist there, but I never knew of that over here. He never even spoke of politics here in Atlanta.

Hope you guys get it together.


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Post by iftikhar Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:18 am

Betty La Fea wrote:My old coworker Avijit was killed there last week. Apparently he was a popular activist there, but I never knew of that over here. He never even spoke of politics here in Atlanta.

Hope you guys get it together.

You knew him Sad !!! It's difficult to say if he was popular or even well-known. But the thing is, it's a terrible shame for us.
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Post by iftikhar Fri Dec 09, 2016 11:54 am

Some good news, at last. Not sure if these are false dawns, we have had too many of those.

First, BNP (Bangladesh Nationalist Party) is taking part in a mayoral election. This move is seen as their vote of confidence to the government (and the administration & election commission by default) whom they have been accused of manipulating ALL  elections since 2013.

Second, BAL (Bangladesh Awami League) has agreed that the President would/should meet BNP and discuss their proposal regarding reconstituting the Election Commission.

Best case scenario, BAL refrain from influencing/dictation the President (who is their member) and allow him to reconstitute the first credible Election Commission in five years, leading to a credible (and peaceful) general election in late 2018.

Keeping my fingers crossed.
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Post by footyfan01 Wed Dec 21, 2016 10:00 pm

The BNP is a fundamentalist party comparatively (much more) when compared to the relatively secular Awami League & the terror groups feel more comfortable with them. The current ruling AL has tried to go against & fight terrorist networks.

Having said that, it is not justifiable to oppress & violate democracy & jail & kill opposition. Hope this is sorted out.

The killing of activists & protesters are pathetic & incredibly sad

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Post by iftikhar Sat Mar 25, 2017 4:04 pm

@footyfan01 wrote:The BNP is a fundamentalist party comparatively (much more) when compared to the relatively secular Awami League & the terror groups feel more comfortable with them. The current ruling AL has tried to go against & fight terrorist networks.

Having said that, it is not justifiable to oppress & violate democracy & jail & kill opposition. Hope this is sorted out.

The killing of activists & protesters are pathetic & incredibly sad
Sorry mate, didn't notice your post. Thought none bothers about it (just as Bangladesh).

Awami League isn't a secular party. Not anymore, there is't even the pretense of it. The apt distinction between AL and BNP would be centrist and center-right.

BTW, where are you from? Hope not intruding.
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Post by Adit Sat Mar 25, 2017 8:15 pm

A suicide bomb attack is major turning point between a country moving from the grip of extremist ideology to utter madness. This just happened yesterday in Bangladesh, i am genuinely scared, it doesnt take much time for ideology to spread.
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Post by M99 Sat Mar 25, 2017 8:16 pm

@Adit wrote:A suicide bomb attack is major turning point between a country moving from the grip of extremist ideology to utter madness. This just happened yesterday in Bangladesh, i am genuinely scared, it doesnt take much time for ideology to spread.


Suicide bombings and suicide attacks happened in Bangladesh before.
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Post by Adit Sat Mar 25, 2017 8:24 pm

@M99 wrote:
@Adit wrote:A suicide bomb attack is major turning point between a country moving from the grip of extremist ideology to utter madness. This just happened yesterday in Bangladesh, i am genuinely scared, it doesnt take much time for ideology to spread.


Suicide bombings and suicide attacks happened in Bangladesh before.


All of them in recent past right? in the span of around 15 years..Bangladesh was kind of secular. I guess petro dollar wahabism from Soudi after 80s did its job. Now bloggers hacked, Atheists killed or driven away...not something the founding fathers would be proud of.
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Post by M99 Sat Mar 25, 2017 8:34 pm

Yeah recent past, same time frame it started happening on US, England, Europe etc as well. Government is taking a pretty aggressive stance on terrorism. The police don't even bother trying to capture them, they just storm their hideouts and straight up kill them. Pretending terrorism does not exist led to the terrible events on July last year which bought us into the international spotlight and put pressure on the government to respond.
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Post by iftikhar Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:29 am

@Adit wrote:A suicide bomb attack is major turning point between a country moving from the grip of extremist ideology to utter madness. This just happened yesterday in Bangladesh, i am genuinely scared, it doesnt take much time for ideology to spread.
There has been a string of attacks for a year now. After the attack in the Gulshan restaurant last Ramadan, government apparently woke up and this resulted in busting some extremist hideouts.

The Sylhet incident is actually third in as many days. Two previous incident were the alleged suicide attack in RAB (anti-terrorism force) barrack and a bomb blast near Dhaka Airport.
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Post by iftikhar Thu Oct 05, 2017 3:28 pm

Meanwhile, we are inundated with another half a million Rohingya refugees. Nothing serious, let's move on. :coffee:

Political Crisis in Bangladesh _9771810
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Post by iftikhar Tue Oct 17, 2017 5:36 pm

Dramatic drone footage shows Rohingya refugees entering Bangladesh

Sad Political Crisis in Bangladesh 2276801876
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Post by urbaNRoots Sun Aug 05, 2018 8:45 pm

@iftikhar what‘s going in Bangladesh? Stay safe bro.
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Post by iftikhar Sun Aug 05, 2018 9:23 pm

Don't know how much (or what version) you have seen/read/heard, but things are really dire.

It all started couple of weeks ago. First, a university student was thrown into river from a running bus and died. Then two college students were run down by another bus. The reaction of our *bleep* Water Transport Minister (who head the mafiasque transport workers union) was a smirk and a banter that 64 people died in a road accident in India on the same day and none is making any fuss.

After that school and college students started protesting. In addition to their protests they also started to manage traffic and checking licenses of the drivers. The government response was to:

1. Beat-up the kids by Police and ruling party thugs
2. Brand them as Rajakars, the militia that assisted genocide etc. during our war of independence
3. Close down the schools, colleges
4. Presently we are experiencing media and internet blackouts

BTW, each year more than 10,000 people are killed in road accidents in Bangladesh.
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Post by Unique Sun Aug 05, 2018 11:18 pm

Hope things get better soon buddy. Thumbs up
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Post by iftikhar Mon Aug 06, 2018 10:06 am

How do you post videos from Facebook here in GL???

What's Happening in Bangladesh?
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Post by iftikhar Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:03 am

We are signing a Defense Cooperation rofl Treaty with Saudi Arabia. Details are not known, they never are; but I'm afraid from now on we will also be bombing schools, hospitals along side our Gulf and Egyptian brotheren. :facepalm:
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Post by iftikhar Sat Dec 29, 2018 3:28 pm

OK fellows Very Happy how have you been Smile.

Tomorrow (Dec 30) is our election (Parliamentary) day, yay Razz.

For the first time since 1979 all political parties are going to participate in an election held under a partisan government. However, the omens are not good. Scratch that, the signs are downright ominous.

At least 10,000 opposition activists or people simply suspected of opposition sympathizer or downright common folks have been arrested for crimes none seems to be aware of. 'Ghost Cases' is the buzzword these days.

15-20 (I have lost interest to keep the actual count) constituencies don't have any opposition candidates. This was possible due a court order. Funnily enough, the court ruling came, a week before the election date, after the selection process was completed. Another 15 odd opposition candidates have been injured during the campaign.

If the ruling party succeeds in managing the election, we will descend into total and absolute Fascism.
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Post by sportsczy Sat Dec 29, 2018 3:37 pm

Congrats man. Hope it goes well.
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Post by iftikhar Sat Dec 29, 2018 6:21 pm

@sportsczy wrote:Congrats man. Hope it goes well.
rofl

It wont. :coffee:

But thanks.
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Post by Hapless_Hans Sat Dec 29, 2018 7:05 pm

@iftikhar wrote:
If the ruling party succeeds in managing the election, we will descend into total and absolute Fascism.

@sportsczy wrote:Congrats man. Hope it goes well.


What a Face
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Post by Unique Sat Dec 29, 2018 9:11 pm

@Hapless_Hans wrote:
@iftikhar wrote:
If the ruling party succeeds in managing the election, we will descend into total and absolute Fascism.

@sportsczy wrote:Congrats man. Hope it goes well.


What a Face
rofl rofl
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Post by Unique Sat Dec 29, 2018 9:11 pm

@Hapless_Hans wrote:
@iftikhar wrote:
If the ruling party succeeds in managing the election, we will descend into total and absolute Fascism.

@sportsczy wrote:Congrats man. Hope it goes well.


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rofl rofl
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Post by iftikhar Sun Dec 30, 2018 8:48 am

Fuck you Awami League.

Fuck you Election Commission.

Fuck you Police, Army and other god-forsaken forces.

My voting center was captured right in front of me. Sad
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