BNP blames govt’s inefficiency, corruption for rice price hike

Calls for resignation of food minister

Staff Correspondent | Published: 01:07, Jun 18,2017 | Updated: 01:19, Jun 18,2017

 
 

Bangladesh Nationalist Party chairperson Khaleda Zia addresses a mourning meeting for deceased Jatiya Ganatantrik Party chief Shafiul Alam Prodhan in the capital on Saturday. — Focusbangla photo

Bangladesh Nationalist Party secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Saturday blamed the government’s lack of farsightedness and efficiency as well as corruption by officials for looming food shortage and the increase in rice prices.
Addressing a discussion, the BNP secretary general also called for resignation of food minister Qamrul Islam.
Jatiyatabadi Jubadal, youth front of the BNP, arranged the discussion on Khaleda Zia’s Vision 2030 and thoughts of youth community at the Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh in the capital.
Fakhrul said that it was very alarming to see the country’s food storage coming down to only 1.91 lakh tonnes.
Describing the way rice price was increasing as an ‘ominous sign’, Fakhrul held the government responsible for the looming situation.
The BNP secretary general came down hard on the food minister for his recent remarks that linked ‘unscrupulous businessmen and businessmen belonging to the BNP’ to the rice price hike. ‘Every failure of them [government] is being intentionally blamed on the BNP to hide their inefficiency and corruption,’ Fakhrul said.
Turning to the construction of Padma bridge, Fakhrul mentioned that a proposal had been made again to increase construction cost by 23 per cent and remarked, ‘There is possibly no such precedence of corruption the way it is taking place there.’
‘Every day and every year the costs of the Padma bridge project as well as corruption are increasing,’ he alleged.
Presided by Jubadal president Saiful Alam Nirob, the discussion was also addressed by economist Mahbub Ullah and BNP’s vice-chairmen Zainul Abedin and Shaukat Mahmood.
Fakhrul, meanwhile, addressing a human chain on Saturday alleged that the government was using the Anti-Corruption Commission for implementing its ‘heinous political’ agenda.
Daily Amar Desh Paribar arranged the human chain in front of the National Press Club to protest at filing a ‘false’ case by the ACC against Amar Desh managing director Firoza Mahmud, wife of Amar Desh acting editor Mahmudur Rahman.
Reminding that false cases were filed against Mahmudur, Fakhrul remarked that the ACC had now ‘unlawfully’ filed case against Mahmudur’s wife.
He said, ‘The filing of case by the ACC is not an isolated incident. These institutions are being used against those who are free-thinkers and have differences of opinion with the government. They want to silence them.’
Amar Desh acting editor Mahmudur termed June 16 ‘a black day’ for newspapers as all but four newspapers were shut down in 1975. He said that the same ‘evil spirit’ was behind the move to file the case against the managing director of Amar Desh.

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