BNP yesterday said the government should quit power immediately for what it said was "people's rejection" of the verdict of the international crimes tribunal.
“The government-formed International Crimes Tribunal [tribunal-2] has delivered its verdict, which the people have rejected. So, the government does not have any moral right to stick to power anymore,” acting secretary general of the main opposition party Mirza Fakhrul Islam Almagir said at a rally in front of the party central office at Naya Paltan in the capital.
Fakhrul said if BNP comes to power again, it will try the war criminals.
The city unit of the party organised the rally to press home the BNP-led 18-party alliance's demand for restoring caretaker government system for holding general elections.
The rally was originally scheduled to be held on February 9 at the same venue under the banner of the 18-party alliance, of which Jamaat-e-Islami is a major component.
On Feb 14, BNP decided to hold the rally alone on February 17 as a number of party leaders expressed the view that if Jamaat leaders addressed the rally in the present situation, it might create a bad impression about BNP.
Fakhrul, also spokesperson of his party, mentioned that the prime minister had vowed to try the war criminals at any cost, and her government formed two tribunals as well as a prosecution team for the trial. “The team has conducted probe into the war crimes allegations. But now people of the country have rejected the tribunal's judgment,” he said.
Addressing the rally, BNP standing committee member Moudud Ahmed said, initially the nature of the Projonmo Chattar (Shahbagh) movement against Jamaat-Shibir could not be understood, it is now clear that the movement has turned into “Awami League Chattar” movement.
He went on, “And that's why we are worried. That's why we tell the new generation that this [demand for capital punishment of all war criminals] should not be the only demand. The young generation should also raise its voice for ensuring law and order, holding the next general elections under a caretaker government and protecting democracy.”
Several other leaders of the BNP and its front organisations also spoke at the rally.