Govt-Oikya Front 3-hour 2nd meeting inconclusive

Jatiya Oikyafront chief Dr Kamal Hossain on Wednesday said the ball is now in the government’s court to resolve the crisis over the next general election through talks.

“We’re making our efforts and continue to do it in the future so that everything happens in a peaceful and stable manner. It’s the government’s responsibility to maintain peace and stability. The ball is now in the government’s court,” he said.Dr Kamal came up with the comment at a press briefing at his Bailey Road residence after a three-hour dialogue between the leaders of Jatiya Oikyafront and Sheikh Hasina–led 14-party alliance at Ganobhaban.

He thanked the Prime Minister for holding talks with then in two phases.During today’s talks, he said they proposed for the continuation of the discussion on a limited scale on their seven-point demand. “We’ve said we’re willing to hold talks on a small scale.”

Kamal said the Prime Minister assured them of withdrawing the ‘false and fictitious’ cases filed against thousands of opposition leaders and activists.He said Sheikh Hasina also assured them that neither anymore fictitious or disturbing cases will be filed against Oikyafront leaders and activist nor they will be arrested in the days to come.

BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir said they have taken the dialogue as part of their movement. “We’re always on a movement. We still believe the problem should be resolved through talks. If the government doesn’t reach any understanding, it’ll be held responsible for the evolving situation.”He also said they are going to people with their demands and will realise those through a movement together with people.

The BNP leader, however, said the government told them that there is a further scope to carry on discussions on their demands. “We’ll now motivate people to realise our demands.”Asked whether they are happy or unhappy over the second round of talks, he declined to make any specific comment on it now. “As we’re going to people, they’ll attain their satisfaction.”

Replying to a question, the BNP secretary general said they could not reach any final decision on their demands for Khaleda Zia’s release, dissolution of parliament, government’s resignation and Election Commission reconstitution. “We proposed carrying out discussions on the issues further and they said it can be held.”He said they talked about Khaleda’s release, and they strongly argued that she can be released through granting bail for her. Fakhrul, however, said they did not discuss anything about her release on parole.

Asked what will be their position if the election schedule is announced on Thursday, he said they will march on foot towards the Election Commission as part of their protest programmes. Besides, the BNP leader said, they will hold a road march towards Rajshahi on Thursday, and hold a rally there on Friday.

Fakhrul said they were told in the talks that the election schedule can be revised later after their further discussions. “There’s no relation between our further discussions and the election schedule as it is possible to reschedule it.”

source: UNB