February 6, 2023, 12:48 pm


Staff Correspondent

Published:
2022-12-07 20:11:47 BdST

Next general elections to be held first week of 2024: PM Hasina


The next general elections of the country will be held in the first week of January in 2024, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina declared it at a public rally in Cox’s Bazar on Wednesday.

Addressing the huge rally at Sheikh Kamal International Cricket Stadium here the prime minister reiterated her call to the people to vote for her Awami League party to sustain the country’s development momentum.

“I am urging all of you to cast your vote for the symbol of Boat,” she said.

The jubilant people raised their hands when Hasina, who is also the president of Awami League, asked them if they will vote for her party. She expressed gratitude to the crowd.

The Sheikh Kamal International Cricket Stadium became a bustling ground as people of all strata of life alongside the leaders and activists of Awami League and its associate bodies throng on it centring the public rally of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today.

The country's most popular tourist destination Cox's Bazar, which is famous for the world's largest unbroken sea beach, turned into a place of euphoria with enthusiasm of hundreds of thousands of people due to the grand rally organised by Cox's Bazar Awami League.

It was Sheikh Hasina's third consecutive appearance at the public gathering outside Dhaka following the rally in Jashore on November 24 and in Chattogram on Dec 4 after over 27 months since the Covid-19 outbreak.

Pinning upon the public rally of the Prime Minister, the entire Cox's Bazar city turned into a place of jubilation.

The city was in festivity while people from all walks of life as well as leaders and activists of AL became enthusiastic. Arrival of Sheikh Hasina, who is also the president of AL, enlivened the leaders and activists in the area.

Before the arrival of the prime minister, hundreds of thousands of people thronged the rally ground at Sheikh Kamal International Cricket Stadium which is adjacent to the sea beach from early morning and within a few hours, the ground became full to the brim.

The crowd then spilled over the surrounding areas, roads and empty places, meaning the town turned into a human sea beside the Bay of Bengal before the arrival of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on the boat-shaped stage at 3:55pm.

Prime Minister and Awami League President Sheikh Hasina said on Wednesday said people of Cox's Bazar will enjoy the benefits of all the ongoing development projects once they are completed.

She said: “Bangladesh is being transformed into a developed and prosperous country. We will reach that goal within 2041. In Bangabandhu's Sonar Bangla, no person will be homeless.”

She said since Awami League came to power in 2008, 73 development projects including 12 mega projects in Cox's Bazar have been undertaken in Cox's Bazar. 

“We have already completed 29 projects. If Cox's Bazar International Airport, Railway Line, Matarbari Power Project is completed soon, people will be able to enjoy its benefits,” she added.

The rally, organized by Cox’s Bazar Awami League, was presided over by its acting president Advocate Faridul Islam Chowdhury.

Hasina said that the ruling AL was able to come to the power for three consecutive terms as the people gave their verdict in favour of Boat, the party’s election symbol.

“From 2009 to 2022 there is a democratic process in the country leading to unprecedented development in the country. Bangladesh has got recognition as a developing country,” she said.

“As the daughter of the Father of the Nation, it is my duty to look after your welfare as long as I am in  power,” she said.

She once again slammed BNP and its ally Jamaat for causing miseries to the people.

“Arson terrorism, killing, murder, looting, money laundering, smuggling country's money to abroad, smuggling these all they can do,” she said.

She also mentioned that Khaleda Zia embezzled the money of an orphanage and for that reason she had been convicted of corruption for ten years.

“And her son Tarique Rahman, known for siphoning off country's money, had been convicted for seven years and a fine of Tk 20 crore as fine,” she said about trial by court.

Sheikh Hasina also mentioned that Tarique Zia was involved in arms smuggling on board 10 trucks.

“I do not know for what purpose he brought those arms,” she asked.

The AL chief said that in August 21, 2004 Khaleda Zia and Tarique Zia and their companions had hurled grenades, which are used in wars, on AL rally leaving 22 AL members dead.

“But I narrowly escaped with the grace of Almighty Allah,” she said.

She said that BNP always pampers looters, militants, siphons off country's money and killl people through arson attacks.

“Can a human being kill another human with fire?, she asked. This movement of BNP, Tarique Zia and Khaleda Zia is aimed at killing people through arson attacks. They do not know anything without destruction,” she said. 

At the outset of the rally, the PM inaugurated 29 development projects, and laid foundation stones of four schemes involving Taka 1963.86 crore.

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