BNP alleges `neighbour`s` plot to keep Awami League in power
Dhaka: In a veiled attack on India, an opposition BNP leader has said his party feared that a "neghbouring country" has hatched plots to keep the ruling Awami League in power after the next elections.
The Manabjamin newspaper carried a report saying that "a country" will spend Rs 10 billion in Bangladesh`s national election. It will be done for a political party. According to the report the same country had spent Rs 8 billion in the last national election too, BNP`s acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir told reporters yesterday.
He added: "Under this situation we doubt an international conspiracy is being hatched over Bangladesh`s election."
Alamgir, however, did not directly name India as he was asked to elaborate but referred also to a previous news report which alleged that India had spent Rs 8 billion during the 2008 elections that installed the Awami League to power.
Being the next-door neighbour and having over 4,000 kilometers of pours borders with Bangladesh, India largely features in Bangladesh politics.
While Awami League is largely regarded as a tradition ally of New Delhi, the BNP is known in public for its anti-India attitude.
Dhaka-Delhi ties witnessed several ups and downs since Bangladesh`s 1971 emergence with crucial Indian help while the relation is said to have had reached its lowest ebb during the 2001-2006 tenure of BNP-led four party coalition government in power with Jamaat-e-Islami being its major partner.
The party, however, visibly tried to repair its ties with India as BNP chief Khaleda Zia visiting New Delhi on an official invitation in November last year which was seen by some analysts as a bipartisan consensus in Bangladesh in regard to Dhaka`s relations with the neighbour.
Most foreign relations analysts and media described Zia`s tour to be crucial to mend fences in its bitter relations.
But Zia later declined to make a scheduled courtesy call on with visiting President Pranab Mukherjee when he toured Bangladesh amid an opposition-sponsored strike while BNP attributed the cancellation of the meeting to the stoppage.
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