Vol. 5 Num 889 Mon. November 27, 2006  

LDP's Didar poses 'threat' to BNP in Satkhira-1

Syed Didar Bakth, who joined Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) from BNP, may pose a threat to his former party in Satkhira-1 (Tala and Kalaroa upazilas) constituency in the coming election, political observers said.

Former state minister in Ershad regime, Didar Bakht joined BNP from Jatiya Party (JP) in 2000. He sought 4-party alliance nomination in 2001 but was denied due to opposition by local BNP leaders.

BNP nominated former lawmaker Habibul Islam Habib from the constituency and he won the election.

Last month, he joined Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), which was hailed by most party men in Tala, LDP sources claimed.

"I have at least 2000 deserters from JP (E) and BNP with me now who are working for me for the coming polls", Didar Bakht said while talking to this correspondent.

He claimed that he will get nomination from LDP and throw a big challenge to local BNP and JP (E) as many diehard workers and supporters of the parties are with him.

He also claimed Awami League will be his main rival, not BNP in the coming polls.

He contested the 1996 election with JP ticket but was defeated by the AL candidate late Syed Kamal Bakht.

Local political observers said, Didar Bakht may pool more votes this time than earlier if BNP fails to field an 'appropriate candidate'.

BNP's Habibul Islam Habib is the lone aspirant for 4-party alliance ticket in the coming election. But an allegation by slain Tala BNP president ABM Altaf Hossain's family about his complicity in the murder (of Altaf), made at a press conference on November 5, tainted his image and raised a controversy among party men, sources claimed.

Altaf Hossain was killed by unidentified miscreants on May 4 night at Patkelghata Bazar in Tala upazila.

Altaf's wife Rehena Khanam demanded Habib's arrest for the murder and alleged that he sheltered terrorists.

Altaf's followers brought out several processions and held rallies in Tala upazila demanding arrest of killers including Habib.

Besides, a large number of leaders of BNP and its front organisation in the area are opposing his candidature and demanding arrest of Altaf's killers.

Former BNP lawmaker Habib will have to face a tough fight to retain the seat, said Pradip Majumdar an influential local BNP leader.

Habib is also facing criticism for his alleged corruption as well as for BNP-Jamaat government's failure to contain the price spiral and resolve power crisis. Former BNP lawmaker Habib is lobbying for alliance ticket, his aides said.

Syed Didar Bakht did a lot of development works in the constituency when he was state minister and has a large number of supporters and well wishers who are working for him, said former BNP leader Syed Idris Ali.

While talking to this correspondent, Habib refuted the allegations brought against him and claimed that being a former lawmaker, he enjoys support of party men.

On contacted, Didar Bakht said a large number of local BNP leaders including Altaf's followers support him.

Syed Didar Bakth