Bangladesh may become an ineffective state if its democratic institutions continue to lose their strength, speakers told a discussion on Thursday.
They said that the latest national election proved that the political parties in Bangladesh only cared for going to power rather than furthering democracy for people’s welfare.
‘State institutions have been destroyed,’ said Sushashoner Jonno Nagorik president M Hafizuddin Khan.
He said that restoration of the institutions was possible only at the hand of elected representatives of the people.
‘But a fair election is not possible without an election-time non-party government,’ said Hafizuddin.
The discussion that was organised by Sujan at the Brac Centre Inn in the capital closed with Hafizuddin’s remark.
Former election commissioner M Shakhawat Hossain said that political parties’ desire to stick to power ‘forever’ helped ‘ultra-rightists’ and ‘ultra-nationalists’ and ‘religio-nationalists’ to rise.
Capturing of democratic institutions by political parties to stay on in power ‘forever’ had created the opportunity for reactionary forces to gain ground in the political landscape of Bangladesh, he observed.
Gono Samhati Andolan’s chief coordinator Zonayed Saki said that political parties’ preoccupation with self-interest hardly left any time for its leaders to debate among them to find a place for Bangladesh in world politics.
He said that politicians in Bangladesh remained busy with trifling issues as world powers sought to expand their dominance over countries including Bangladesh.
BNP leader Rumeen Farhana said that Bangladesh was going through a national crisis and it would not be possible for a single party to lead the country out of the crisis alone.
Sujan secretary Badiul Alam Majumdar said that the governance system in Bangladesh had collapsed due to abuse of power.
‘The system does not work here, neither works the law. Bangladesh may become an ineffective country if it continues to go like this,’ said Badiul.
Communist Party of Bangladesh leader Kafi Ratan, Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association executive director Syeda Rizwana Hasan, Dhaka University professor CR Abrar and human rights activist Hameeda Hossain also participated in the discussion.
Sujan central coordinator Dilip Kumar Sarkar presented the keynote paper at the discussion.
The paper recommended 18 reformations in the constitution, political landscape, electoral process, parliamentary activities, judiciary and other sectors.
The recommendations were the results of about a dozen consultations of Sujan with public over the last few months.
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