National Elections 2024: Challenges to the democratic system in Bangladesh

National Elections 2024: Challenges to the democratic system in Bangladesh

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There can be many arguments on the continuation of the government in the country. However, this continuity must be with the direct support of the people. This becomes clear by winning proper elections. It cannot be accepted that someone remains in power for the sake of stability by jeopardizing the democratic rights of the people. We have been familiar with the democratic system since the British rule. In fact, through limited voting rights by the Government of India Act 1935, we got a system of governance accountable to the people at the provincial level. It was even the basic feeling of our freedom. We cannot in any way support this unacceptable practice of keeping anti-government forces out of sight. And it is also not acceptable for the government to take the help of the state machinery to do so.

After various pressures and advice from India and abroad, anti-government forces have got the opportunity to run mass campaigns at various levels across the country for a year. They held rallies, meetings and processions at various levels in the capital. However, a BNP rally on 28 December, two weeks before the election schedule was announced, was foiled, and law enforcement agencies are citing various grounds for this. Thousands of leaders and workers including many top leaders of that party have been taken to jail. Many people are running away out of fear of arrest. Hundreds of cases are registered. Attacks on the residences of Chief Justices and judges are unfortunate and punishable. However, those who do this must be punished.

The descriptions of many investigation reports from India and abroad are contradictory to the police statements. Yet the policy of repression continues. The party’s central office is still locked. But, we have to say that BNP has not yet been able to unite the people and launch any movement against this policy of repression. He has no notable activities at the district level or in the capital. The human chain to be formed on December 10 should have been formed a month earlier. These days, strikes and blockades do not seem to be as effective, and the threat of jail and torture is imminent if one instigates a movement.

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