Sheikh Hasina’s challenges are not over yet

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 Khaleda Zia 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.

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.

Military officers in Bangladesh assassinated 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. He said, “What is important for me is whether people accept this election or not. 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. She has accused the ruling party of promoting ‘dummy’ independent candidates to try to make the elections look credible. However, Awami League has denied this claim. Critics have also accused Hasina of authoritarianism, human rights violations, restricting free speech and suppressing dissent.

However, Bangladesh’s economy has slowed after rising fuel and food import prices following the Russia-Ukraine war, prompting Bangladesh to turn to the International Monetary Fund for a $4.7 billion bailout package last year. Was. 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.

– Irwin Khanna (Chief Editor Dainik Uttam Hindu).

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