If there is no agreement-the National Party will boycott the election
National Party:In the last three national elections since 2008, Awami League and Jatiya Party participated in the 9th and 11th parliamentary elections as a grand alliance. In 2014, BNP boycotted the 10th parliamentary elections, but the two parties agreed on seats. Awami League did not field candidates in 34 constituencies where Jatiya Party had candidates. Plow candidates won in these seats. Roshan Ershad played an important role in this compromise.
The Jatiya Party, which voted in agreement with the Awami League for a long time, has single-handedly fielded candidates in 287 seats for the upcoming 12th National Parliament elections. In this situation, the top leaders of the party, especially the party’s co-chairman, presidium members and current members of parliament, are reluctant to fight with the boat symbol and independent candidate of Awami League.
They say that there will be a vote only if there is a compromise, otherwise they will withdraw from the election. When asked, a co-chairman of the Jatiya Party, who did not want to be named, told Bangladesh Pratidin, ‘We have become the enemy of the anti-election people, including the parties that did not participate in the election, through the announcement of the Jatiya Party going to the elections under the ruling government. Now he does not want to be an enemy of Awami League by competing with the boat symbol at the field level.
He said, ‘Recently, a meeting of co-chairmen was held at the residence of party senior co-chairman Anisul Islam. It has been decided that the Jatiya Party will participate in the next parliamentary elections by agreeing seats with the Awami League. If the Awami League is not positive about the seat compromise, most of them have given a strong opinion in favor of boycotting the vote. Talks are going on with Awami League about this.’ Jatiya Party is said to have spoken to several co-chairmen and presidium members, but the fear of fair elections under the ruling government and harsh criticism of the government throughout the year, the Jatiya Party finally announced to go to the polls.
Therefore, the grand alliance and seat agreement was not possible before the schedule. The Jatiya Party is participating in the elections in view of the assurances from the government of fair elections and distribution of seats as per expectations. But the top leaders of the party are worried as the issue of seat distribution has not been resolved so far. The party’s policy makers want a decision on this issue by December 10.
Awami League wants 50 seats but is happy even if 35 seats are scrapped. They say that the candidates of the party are not relieved even after announcing to go to the elections. Because the announcement of Awami League candidates in all constituencies and alternate candidates in each constituencies has created this discomfort. They think they cannot survive the fight with Awami League’s party and alternative candidates. If there is an election in this situation, the party may face a big disaster. Even after receiving party nomination, some candidates did not submit their nomination papers.
A leader who submitted nomination papers for a seat in Dhaka said that the candidate of Awami League is now threatening. I don’t know what happens next. It will be seen after the selection is over. There are currently 23 Jatiya Party members in the National Parliament. In the party’s internal grouping, 19 of them are now GM cadres.
Leader of Opposition in Parliament Roshan Ershad and Ershad’s son Saad as his followers, Opposition Chief Whip Masiur Rahman Ranga and Rustam Ali Farazi were not given party nomination. Because of this, Roshan has announced to boycott the election with his companions. Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader said regarding seat settlement with Jatiya Party, this is the perfect opportunity to stand as a true opposition of Jatiya Party. We welcome self-selection. I have not found any list of them regarding concession of Jatiya Party seats. However, if the Jatiya Party wants any seats in the upcoming 12th National Assembly elections, it may be discussed.
Several senior leaders of Japa said that the silence of the Awami League regarding the distribution of seats as promised is increasing among the cadres. In the end, if the Awami League does not agree to a seat or a compromise, almost all the candidates of Japa, including the heavyweights, will be in danger. Even most of the current 23 constituencies are in danger of losing their seats.
They say that if the Awami League does not come forward in the seat agreement, it will not be possible for Japa candidates to survive in the election field due to various reasons including organizational weakness, financial capacity. In this case, the party founded by Ershad will face a big political loss. In this context, if the distribution of seats is not confirmed, the party can also take the decision to withdraw from the election on the last day of withdrawal of nomination papers.
However, the Japa leaders are hoping that both the parties will withdraw candidates from the designated seats after the seat sharing is over. Candidates in non-compromised constituencies will participate in open elections. But all the candidates of the party will be elected on the plow symbol. People related to Japa say that in the last three parliamentary elections, the alliance of Awami League and the Jatiya Party, which voted by consensus, will vote alone in the next election or will fall off the electoral train due to the lack of seat consensus. The last day for withdrawal of nomination is December 17.
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