Sheikh Hasina somehow won Bangladesh Elections, but her challenges are not over yet.

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Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has won a big victory in the general elections for the fourth consecutive time. However, the opposition there is questioning the fairness of the elections and the way less than 40 percent voting took place shows that most people were not interested in the elections. Apart from this, since many major parties including the main opposition party had boycotted the elections, Sheikh Hasina was successful in achieving her fourth consecutive victory. The opposition has rejected the election results and demanded that fresh, free and transparent elections should be conducted in the country. The opposition has also demanded the resignation of Sheikh Hasina from the post of Prime Minister, but the ruling party has rejected all the demands of the opposition. However, from India’s point of view, Sheikh Hasina’s return to power is good because she is pro-India, whereas her opponent Sheikh Hasina had grown closer to China during her tenure and due to her policies, fundamentalists had also become dominant in Bangladesh. India’s High Commissioner to Bangladesh Prannoy Verma met Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in Dhaka after the election results and extended best wishes on behalf of the country. If seen, Sheikh Hasina has created a new history by returning to power, but she will have to work hard to improve the economy of her country and provide relief to the people from inflation.

As far as the electoral scenario of Bangladesh is concerned, let us tell you that due to sporadic violence and boycott of elections by the main opposition party Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and its allies, there is a path to victory for Sheikh Hasina’s party Awami League. It became easy. Sheikh Hasina’s party won 223 seats in the 300-seat Parliament. Elections were held on 299 seats due to the death of one candidate. Voting on this seat will take place later. In Parliament, the main opposition party Jatiya Party has won 11 seats, Bangladesh Kalyan Party one and independent candidates have won 62 seats. Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal and ‘Workers’ Party of Bangladesh’ won one seat each.

Let us tell you that the opposition Jatiya Party is also included among the 27 political parties contesting the elections in Bangladesh. The rest are members of the ruling Awami League-led coalition, which experts have described as constituents of the “electoral bloc”. According to the country’s Election Commission, voting took place at more than 42,000 polling stations. More than 1,500 candidates from 27 political parties were in the fray in the elections and apart from them there were also 436 independent candidates. An Election Commission spokesperson had said that apart from some isolated incidents of violence, voting was largely peaceful in 299 constituencies out of 300. More than 100 foreign observers, including three observers from India, monitored the 12th general election. One such foreign observer, Sharmeen Murshid, while reacting to the Bangladesh elections, said that for the first time she has seen a party fielding its own candidates. He said that for the first time the opponents were given seats so that they could become the “true opposition”. He said it seemed everything went according to plan. He said that 20, 30 or 40 percent voting does not matter to those who win the elections.

However, with this victory, Sheikh Hasina’s stature has increased significantly in the politics of her country. He not only led his party to a big victory but also won the election from his seat with a huge margin. 76-year-old Awami League party chief Sheikh Hasina won the Gopalganj-III seat by a huge margin. This is his eighth term as a Member of Parliament. Sheikh Hasina has been in power since 2009 and has won for the fourth consecutive time in a one-sided election. The important thing is that this is the second time since the restoration of democracy in 1991 that the turnout was the lowest. The controversial elections of February 1996 had a voter turnout of 26.5 percent, the lowest in the history of Bangladesh. In Sunday’s elections, 27.15 percent voting took place till 3 pm and the voting process ended at 4 pm. The Election Commission had estimated the overall turnout to be around 40 percent, with an increase of 13 percent in one hour.

With this victory, Sheikh Hasina is on her way to becoming the longest serving Prime Minister of Bangladesh since independence. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina cast her vote at the Dhaka City College polling station soon after the polling began. During this time his daughter Saima Wajid was also with him. He had alleged that the opposition BNP-Jamaat-e-Islami alliance does not believe in democracy.” Hasina, in response to a question, told reporters that India is a ”trusted friend” of Bangladesh. “We are very fortunate… India is our trusted friend,” he said. During the liberation war (1971), he not only supported us after 1975, when we lost our entire family – father, mother, brother, everyone (in the military coup) and only two of us (Hasina and her younger sister Rihanna) were left…they also gave us shelter. So we wish the people of India all the best.

Let us remind you that military officers had murdered Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, his wife and his three sons in their home in August 1975. His daughters Haseena and Rihanna survived the attack because they were abroad. When asked how acceptable this election is because of BNP’s boycott, the Prime Minister said that his responsibility is towards the people. “What is important for me is whether people accept this election or not,” he said. So I don’t care about their (foreign media) acceptance. It doesn’t matter what the terrorist group says or doesn’t say.” Hasina has accused the opposition of instigating the anti-government protests that have rocked Dhaka since late October. At least 14 people have died during the protests. Last Friday, four people died in a fire in a passenger train. Several polling stations, schools and a Buddhist monastery were also set on fire days before voting.

Let us tell you that the party ‘BNP’ led by former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia had boycotted the elections and went on strike on the day of the elections. The party plans to intensify its anti-government agitation through a peaceful public participation program from Tuesday and has slammed the elections as “fraudulent”. The BNP had called on voters to stay away from the election to mark it as the beginning of the end of the “fascist government”. It is noteworthy that BNP alliance had won seven seats in the 2018 elections. It has accused the ruling party of promoting ‘dummy’ independent candidates to try to make the elections look credible, although the Awami League has denied this claim. Critics have also accused Hasina of authoritarianism, human rights violations, restricting free speech and suppressing dissent.

However, as far as the current situation of Bangladesh is concerned, let us tell you that the pace of the economy has slowed down due to the increase in prices of fuel and food imports after the Russia-Ukraine war, due to which Bangladesh lost $ 4.7 billion last year. Had to turn to the International Monetary Fund for a bailout package.

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