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Tuesday, January 22, 2019 01:21:19 AM
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BNP`s allegations turned down

PM trashes it as unwise statement

By Special Correspondent
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Turning down the BNP's allegations about 'selling out the country to India'; Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday said who had issued such statements are 'unwise', indeed.  
Over the last three days, senior leaders of BNP have been alleging that the ruling Awami League has inked a deal with India to stay in power for five more years. "After five years, they [AL] will go away selling the country [Bangladesh] to India in black and white," BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia said recently.
"The present AL government is not a pro-people as they are not elected by the people. They are again planning to go to power in the same way. So, she [Hasina] has signed an agreement with India as she can stay in power for five more years," Khaleda also said directly, blaming the ruling party's high-command.
But refuting such a claim, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, while exchanging views with the business communities of Bangladesh and India at Taj Hotel in New Delhi yesterday, said:  "A lot of statements I've heard before coming here [India]. Some of them were talking about selling out the country…. Those who are talking such are really unwise."
Clarifying her stance, the PM further said: "There may be some problems with the neighbouring country [India]. And these we should overcome through discussion, not by quarrel. So, you [audience] tell me whether I've sold my country, or I've achieved something for my country."
In fact, the AL government is now facing sharp criticism from the opposition camps when it failed to sign Teesta Water Sharing Treaty during the visit of Sheikh Hasina due to non-cooperative attitude of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. But Dhaka has signed defense deals with Delhi ignoring the protest from opposition political parties, including BNP. 
Referring to the issue, Senior Joint Secretary General of BNP Ruhul Kabir Rizvi has warned that the people of the country would not allow the ruling AL government to execute the defense deals with India, which were signed on Saturday.
"The people haven't given consent about the deals [defense]. Our defense strategy will be formulated with our own style. India has forced to sign the defense deals apparently to control our total security system. India inked the deal with a view to keeping a political party [AL] in power. The deal signing day will be marked in the history as a black day," he said at a human chain programme in the city on Monday.
The BNP leader said the basket of Bangladesh is nearly empty; it did not get anything during PM Sheikh Hasina's India visit, whereas the entire security system has been unlocked before India. "People haven't any idea about the 36 agreements, MoUs and protocols signed with Delhi. These have been done with an ill intention."
Echoing the same, BNP Standing Committee member Gayeshawar Chandra Roy said: "India has signed the defense deals to save its own soil using the soil of Bangladesh. The defense deals are not for Bangladesh's interest, rather it is for the interest of India."
Against this backdrop, AL General Secretary Obaidul Quader on Monday said the BNP is playing old and broken record of anti-India politics fearing possible defeat in the next general election. If the people want, they can vote AL to power repeatedly…It's not a task of India."
On the Teesta River water treaty, Obaidul Quader, who is also Transport and Bridges Minister, said: "The draft of Teesta Water Sharing Treaty is finalised. It is now waiting just for approval. The deal will be signed during the tenure of Hasina and Modi governments."

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