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Bangladesh`s microcredit pioneer denies any political links

Last Updated: Monday, September 7, 2009 - 13:56

Dhaka: Bangladesh`s microcredit pioneer and Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus has said he had no links with any political party, rejecting a media report that he planned to work with opposition BNP as "totally baseless".
"I am not involved with any political is totally baseless, a travesty of truth," the private UNB news agency today quoted him as saying.

"I was surprised by the report. I strongly protest such news and condemn this kind of journalism that goes against the truth," he said.

A Bengali newspaper carried a report last week about Yunus`s plan to work with Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) after Zia on August 30 congratulated him on receiving Presidential Medal of Freedom Award, the highest civilian honour of the United States.

A five-member delegation led by BNP joint secretary general Nazrul Islam Khan handed over Zia`s letter of felicitation to Yunus, whose experiment of poor men`s banking earned Bangladesh the repute of being the home of microcredit and the Nobel Peace Prize for him along with his Grameen Bank.

Yunus, however, had tried his luck in politics two years ago when he decided to float his Nagorik Shakti party but abandoned the plan three months after announcing his formal entry in politics.

"I thought would make a team . . . I did not succeed. I won`t succeed to do so in future either," he said in an open letter upsetting speculations about new polarisation in Bangladesh`s troubled political arena in May 3, 2007, when Bangladesh was under emergency rule during the past military-backed interim administration.

The first Bangladeshi Nobel laureate, however, said at that time that was high time for the nation to "change gear" on its economic and political journey forward.

"I had a plan ... but I came to understand that it is not possible and accepting this reality I decided not to go forward," the letter read.

Bureau Report

First Published: Monday, September 7, 2009 - 13:56
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