January 17, 2007

Update on Bangladesh (III)

There have been some positive developments in Bangladesh. People are finally finding peace at home with the actions of the new caretaker government. The most important step taken is separating the judiciary, which was the prime requirement to re-stabilize Bangladesh. It is termed as one of the best things to happen to Bangladesh after independence. The question of reform process of the judiciary to eradicate the partisan elements in the court comes after that. The government is keen to refresh the voter list and determined towards holding a free and fare election soon. If they can be successful in doing that then Bangladesh will be back on track.

And just see what a politically stabilized Bangladesh mean for the economy. Political stability from now would boost the chances of the economy achieving growth of 7 percent in the fiscal year to the end of June. The Dhaka Stock Exchange reported that trading volume on Sunday, the first working day after the state of emergency was the highest in 10 years.

Today on another development ex president Ershad was cleared by the court of conviction in the Japanese boat purchase graft case, which was controversially brought into action a few week ago barring him from taking part in the election. He was freed of the 7 year sentence because he had already completed that term in jail in another case. Barring Ershad from election was a tactical achievement by the BNP allies and it was one of the main reason the opposition boycotted the election.

Five more advisers were appointed and most of them so far are without controversy. Hope they can contribute to taking this country forward.

While the army raids on the corrupt politicians and businessmen and trouble makers continues there still lies threat of some religious radicals being resurfaced again. The security forces recently captured some JMB activists with lot of explosives. Notable journalist Nirmal Sen today in an article in the Daily Samakal accused ex prime minister Khaleda Zia of protecting JMB, the banned military organization. The two kingpins of the organization, Sheikh Abdur Rahman and Siddiqur Rahman (Bangla Bhai) are facing death sentence and the past government was keen to get them hanged. In a recent article in the Daily Jugantar these both accused wants to talk with the journalists presumably to disclose the government links to them. This request was ignored by the past government which raised eyebrow of many. Even their confessional statements were not kept in police records. So I think it will be good for the country if the caretaker government opens the investigation once again to find out the persons behind the rise of fundamentalists in the country. Some of their suicide squads are still wanted by the security agencies. The government should not let them be used by the forces who want to destabilize the country again.

There is a tension in the border between India and Bangladesh as the border security forces engaged in exchange of fires. Apparently the battle is over smuggling of cows rather than having a political influence. The illegal cattle trade between both the countries is the root of many border problems as I wrote ago.

Meanwhile there was a growing rumor that the BNP elected president Iajuddin Ahmed is resigning as BNP is not happy with his performance. But as BNP is not in power its upto the president to decide it. And according to the Daily Amader Shomoy he will be continuing as advised by the army and his family members. It is good that he has been able to come out of the shell of his political leaning and deciding what is best for the country instead of benefiting his party only.


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