Vol. 4 Num 61 Sat. July 26, 2003  
Front Page

New body floated, says will promote democracy

The Notundhara, committed to emerging as a people's movement, was launched yesterday with the aims of what its founders said promoting democracy and establishing a just society with a sustainable and equitable economy.

"Committed to working for social and economic justice for all, the Notundhara aims to bring participatory democracy where people can make decisions themselves," Feroz M Hassan, chief organiser, said at the launch at the Jatiya Press Club.

"The Notundhara will work with people as part of a broad coalition of citizens to ensure a society free from hunger, diseases, ignorance and political terrorism," he added.

It is not any political party nor a non-government organisation (NGO), rather a movement that intends to bring an end to unfair social, political and economic situation, he said.

The movement will set out a list of demands on local and national issues and work to set a new political agenda, Feroz said, adding it would be backed by rallies, protests, discussions, study circles and networking.

Noting strong links between political corruption and 'loss of sovereignty' to donors, he asked people to put time and effort into creating a new consensus spirit for serving Bangladesh.

"Together with other organisations, we want to mount maximum pressure on the government institu tions to do what they should do," he said, adding the movement intended to join single-issue movements and support them at district levels.

With the call for unity among various movements, the Notundhara will shortly issue a specific plan of action in a document called 'Notundhara: Time for Change', he added.

"We had a false dawn in 1990 with the removal of autocracy, now we need to make our democracy 'work for people' before it is too late. People want tangible improvements in their life and security and hope for the future," Feroz said.

Among others present at the launch were advocate Elina Khan, Farid Bakht, Mohammad Dhali, Advocate Fouzia Karim and district committee convenors.

Prior to the launch, the national steering committee comprising convenors of 25 district committees approved the constitution of the body at a meeting at its Banani office.

Feroz M Hassan, chief organiser of the Notundhara, speaks at the launch of the organsiation at the Jatiya Press Club yesterday. Photo: STAR