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Awami League not worried about the quota system movement

  • Published at 09:24 am April 17th, 2018
Awami League not worried about the quota system movement
Protests both for and against the quota reform are still ongoing. On Monday, Bangladesh Sadharon Chhatra Odhikar Songrokkhon Parishad threatened to start a quota reform movement on the Dhaka University premises again. On the other hand, different organizations have started protests in favour of firing the family members of rajakars from government jobs. However, ruling party Awami League thinks that even if the anti-quota movement starts again, it will not gain much momentum. The senior leaders of the party think the movement might exist for a short while in Dhaka University campus, but it will not last in other parts of the country. According to them, those in favour of quota reform have lost their rights to protest as Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has already declared to abolish the quota system in the national parliament. However, they added that those against quota reform should not participate in movements either, as the ones benefitting from the system- especially women, freedom fighter families, and different organizations- had failed to stand beside the government when the anti-quota movement was at its peak.
Also Read- How rumours and fake news shaped the quota reform protest
Awami League policy-makers further said even if a hostile situation occurs again, it will be the responsibility of law enforcement agencies to deal with it. Awami League policy-maker sources said that until the election, unexpected situations might occur at any moment. But AL can use these situations to their advantage. The ruling party will be able to divert the attention of people from the issue of BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's imprisonment. Senior leaders of Awami League agreed that until the election is over, the party's target is to remove the thought of Khaleda Zia's imprisonment from the minds of people completely. In that case, an ongoing movement like the quota reform will help the party achieve its target. While speaking on this topic, Awami League Presidium member Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim said: "After what the prime minister has declared, the quota reform movement will have little momentum, and will not reach field levels."
Also Read- Quota reform seekers warn of more protests
However, according to Kazi Jafarullah, another presidium member of Awami League, the movement has become influenced by different scheming parties. "If it was only about establishing their rights, the protestors would have waited till May 7, the date declared by the government," said Jafarullah. "If any third party tries to take advantage of the situation by starting a protest again," said the presidium member, “it will be the law enforcement agencies' duty to tackle it." Jafarullah asked: "Those who want to start protests for keeping the quota system intact, where were they during the quota reform movement?" Joint Secretary General of Awami League Abdur Rahman said: "BNP-Jamaat are trying to influence the quota reform movement. The protestors demanded a decision from the government. "The prime minister gave her decision," continued Abdur. "If anyone still wants to continue the movement, law enforcers will take care of it." This article was first published on banglatribune.com
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