1405Published on April 1, 2018
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has described "boat" as the "symbol of the people" seeking vote for it saying Awami League's reelection in the next polls was crucial to keep up the peace and the current development spree.
"Nobody returns empty-handed after voting for 'boat' . . . we delivered more than what we had committed," Sheikh Hasina told a huge public rally organized by district Awami League at Chandpur Stadium this afternoon.
She said as people's servants her party wanted country's development, not killing and destruction and "we want to make such an arrangement so the people live in peace."
In an apparent reference to BNP she said they did not believe in the country's independence and could not deliver anything for the national development or people's welfare.
The premier said they rewarded Bangabandhu's killers and handed over the national flag to war criminals while "they could not make any development in the past and will not do it also in future".
"The boat is your symbol which rescues the human beings . . . the boat of Prophet Nooh (AS) saved the mankind along with the animal kingdom and birds while the people of the country earned independence casting vote for the boat," she said.
"Do you want to keep up the continuation of development in the country? If you want it then you will have to give the vote to the Awami League," she said while the mammoth crowd raised their hands in a gesture of their supports with huge applause.
The premier said Awami League's reelection for the second consecutive term in 2014 made available to people the fruits of development and the nation could witness the continued development spree with the continuation of the incumbent government.
"We'll celebrate Bangabandhu's birth centenary in 2020 and the golden jubilee of independence in 2021 by establishing a hunger and poverty-free Bangladesh . . . the continuation of the government is crucial to achieving the goal," she said.
AL General Secretary Obaidul Quader, former foreign minister and AL Joint Secretary Dr Dipu Moni and Disaster Management Minister Mofazzal Hossain Chowdhury Maya spoke, among others, at the rally chaired by district Awami League president Naziruddin Ahmed.
The premier said the country witnessed development when Awami League came to power as "Awami League believes in development while that development starts from the village as it uplifts the common people".
On the other hand, she said whenever BNP came to power; they inflicted heinous torture on the people, plundered public property, committed corruption, laundered money and assets abroad.
"They also garb houses and business establishments of the people as looting is their character and they are expert in terrorism, militancy and bomb and grenade attacks," Sheikh Hasina said.
The premier said the BNP-Jamaat nexus killed 500 people and seriously wounded 3500 carrying out arson attacks in 2014 and 2015 in the name of the movement as "BNP's movement means burning people to death".
During that period, she recalled, they also burnt nearly 4000 buses, trucks, CNG autorickshaws, trains and launches.
Sheikh Hasina elaborated her government's impressive successes and achievements in different sectors saying "our goal is to ensure peace and security of the people and build a prosperous Bangladesh". "We want to move keeping our head high not begging to others," she said.
Sheikh Hasina said Bangabandhu had realized for Bangladesh the recognition as a least developed country and following his footprint, the present Awami League government graduated it to a developing country after 43 years.
She criticized Zia, Ershad and Khaleda regimes for rehabilitating war criminals after 1975 while Bangabandhu started their trial.
"They rehabilitated them socially and politically by making them prime minister, ministers, advisers and lawmakers," she said, adding that these regimes also distorted the country's history and banned playing Bangabandhu's historic March 7 speech.
Sheikh Hasina said her government after assuming office in 2009 initiated the trial of war criminals and executed the verdicts against them.
"We hate the BNP and Khaleda Zia for handing over the blood-stained red-green flag of the millions of martyrs to the war criminals . . . what could be more shameful than this," she said.
Sheikh Hasina said they are shameless as they do not believe in the country's independence and creation of Bangladesh and they could not accept Bangladesh's independence.
The prime minister said the government of Zia, Ershad and Khaleda Zia did not contribute to the development of the country. BNP tarnished Bangladesh's image in the world by becoming champion in graft for five times and siphoning off money abroad.
"The money laundering of Khaleda Zia's sons was proved in the US Federal Court and Singapore Court and we have brought back some money that they embezzled," she said.
Sheikh Hasina said the BNP leader and her sons did not stop by just laundering the money; they also embezzled the orphans' money. "They brought money from abroad in the name of orphans but the orphans did not get a single taka," she said.
The premier said the Holy Quran forbids snatching the share of the orphans, but Khaleda Zia and her sons did not hesitate to steal the orphans' money. "For this, Khaleda Zia landed in jail and the BNP is waging movement for her release and the extent of their greed is so much that they have exceeded that extent," she added.
Sheikh Hasina said after coming to power her party has been working for the distressed people. "We remain beside the people and work for their welfare ... it's our principle and ideology," she said.
The prime minister reiterated her call to the cross-section of people including parents, guardians, teachers, students and clerics to remain alert so that their children don't indulge in drug addiction, militancy and terrorism.
While talking about the development of Chandpur district, the prime minister mentioned that she opened and laid the foundation of 47 uplift schemes from the meeting venue.
She announced that her government will establish a medical college and special economic zone in the district.