Vol. 5 Num 800 Sat. August 26, 2006  

Mudslinging by Netrakona BNP leaders over ticket

The intra-party rift in Netakona BNP has widened over nomination in Netrakona-3 constituency (Atpara and Barhatta) in the coming parliamentary election.

The party is divided into to factions, one led by lawmaker Begum Khadija Amin and another by central Juba Dal leader Rafiqul Islam Hilali. Both are seeking nomination and are now engaged in mudslinging on each other.

They are holding workers meetings and public rallies to show their strength and are lobbying with party high-ups, sources said.

At several public meetings recently, Rafiqul Islam Hilali bitterly criticised Khadiza Amin saying, "The four-party alliance will lose the seat to the 14 party opposition if Khadija Amin is nominated because she has become became unpopular for her inefficiency and ill treatment with people and party men". He also claimed that she could not do any development work in Atpara and Kendua upazilas during her tenure.

"I believe the party high command will not nominate Khadija Amin as alliance candidate in the coming election", he said while talking to this correspondent.

"I got hint from our party chairman about getting nomination", he said. "If Khadija gets nomination, I and my followers will not support her".

On the other hand, Khadija Amin at public rallies is claiming that she did many development works during her tenure.

"I believe, I am popular in the constituency because I have done many development work" , she told this correspondent. People will elect me again to continue the process of development, she added.

Khadija Amin was elected in the by-election held in 2003 by defeating Awami League candidate M Jubed Ali. She got 95,251 votes against 69,966 of Jubed Ali. The by-election was held following the death of her husband BNP lawmaker Nurul Amin Talukder.

BNP sources said Khadija and Rafiqul Islam are political foes for long. The feud intensified after Kendua upazila BNP committee was dissolved on June 27, by Netrakona district BNP president MA Karim Abbasi MP, in which she was allegedly involved, party sources said.

Rafiqul Islam Hilali, Netrakona district BNP secretary Mahfuzul Haque and organizing secretary Nazrul Islam Khan did not attend the party council in which the Kendua committee was dissolved.

Soon after dissolution of the Kendua committee, Khadija's rivals brought out a procession in Kendua town protesting it. On the next day (June 28), several thousand party activists from Kendua and Atpara upazila brought out a procession in Netrakona under the leadership of Hilali.

Khadiza Amin MP, Rafiqul Islam Hilaly