Bangladesh Opposition Demands cancellation of Jan 7 General Elections, Gives call for Nationwide Strike
Opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) on Thursday gave a call for a 48-hour nationwide strike demanding the scrapping of the January 7 general elections. The two-day national strike starts on Sunday morning.
The BNP announced this strike call a day after Chief Election Commissioner Kazi Habibul Awal declared that the general elections will be held in Bangladesh on January 7.
Former PM of Bangladesh Khaleda Zia led BNP’s 48-hour strike call was supported by its ally Jamaat-e-Islami.
Following the strike call, security was heightened throughout Bangladesh. Paramilitary troops guard the highways and major cities.
The opposition is demanding Prime Minister Hasina’s resignation to make way for a neutral government to conduct the polls.
BNP has repeatedly said that no election under the incumbent government would be fair while the ruling Awami League says elections would be held under the incumbent premier Hasina in line with the constitution.
The BNP had boycotted the 2014 election but took part in the 2018 polls.
The US and other major Western countries called for a dialogue between the ruling party and the opposition to ensure inclusive and credible elections.