Vijaya Laxmi Tripura
For years, Jatiyo Party – a political party formed by a former military dictator has survived mostly because of extreme rivalry between the two major parties – Awami League and Bangladesh Nationalist Party. In the current parliament, Jatiyo Party plays the role of a so-called opposition where several MPs of this party are cabinet members and even the Chairman of Jatiyo Party, Lt Gen Hussein Muhammad Ershad is the Special Envoy to the Prime Minister. Cashing advantage of such favorable situation, most of the presidium members of Jatiyo Party has turned into multi-billionnaires from the status of mere petty-fokers. Party’s chairman Ershad too has managed a license to launch a private bank (People’s Bank Limited). In brief, politics has become a profitable venture to the members of this party.
Duing his tenure, Lt Gen Hussein Muhammad Ershad dedicatedly took numerous initiaves in Islamization of the country. Due to his personal initiaves, Islam had been made the official religion of the country.
General Ershad had extreme intimacy with Yaseer Arafat and during his tenure, Arafat was frequently visiting Bangladesh at the invitation of the military dictator. Relations between Bangladesh and Palestinians reached a newer height during the tenure of Ershad.
But, most possibly, the days of prospect for Jatiyo Party has now teached the last point of demise as the country is poised to hold a general election on December 23rd; and there is not even a fractional chance for the party either in emerging as the majority or the main opposion in the parliament. According to analysts, Jatiyo Party does not have the ability of getting even 10 seats in the next general election, thoigh the parliament consists of 300 seats. After this election, Jatiyo Party will become politically unimportant and irrelevant. Many are seeing this as a good sign as Jatiyo Party is ultra-Islamist force.
Split in Jatiyo Party:
According to credible souces, none of the members of Jatiyo Party, who are in the current cabinet, are willing to contest in the forthcoming general election with party’s symbol, sensing a total catestrophe. All of them wants the symbol of Awami League and would resign from Jatiyo Party and join Awami League soon. Even some other leaders of the party are actively considering quitting out of their hidden anger towards party’s top brasses.
Last hope of Jatiyo Party:
Even after declaration of the election date, top policymakers and leaders of Jatiyo Party are expecting parties inside Jatiyo Oikya Prokriya (National Unity Process) including Bangladesh Nationalist Party to boycott the election. This would be the last hope for Jatiyo Party in getting a fresh life. But such hope has already embraced a huge smash when BNP has already expressed its readiness of participating in the polls. Moreover, if BNP will refrain from participating in the December 23rd general election, its registration as a political party will be cancelled.