Begum Khaleda Zia, Chaireperson of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), angry and tired over repeated failure to launch a 'fierce' movement to dislodge the government, now plans to form a 'all-party songramme committee" to lead her mission to success while senior leaders of her own party appear reluctant to act fiercely as she hoped.
BNP insiders said she wanted to create a hard-hitting force with her party men but at the same time keep an alternative force drawn from partners in the BNP-led 20-party "Formation of an 'all party songram committee' is already under way," one BNP insider said.
BNP sees no alternative to launching a vigorous anti-government movement in order to revive the flagging spirits of the party leaders and activists, with its top brass enmeshed in a multitude of court cases.
The party policymakers apprehended that Khaleda Zia and some other senior leaders may be awarded prison sentence in some of the cases - over alleged charges of corruption -- and placed under arrest.
The BNP high command, however, is apprehensive as to how active the leaders will actually be in implementing Khaleda's programmes.
Under the circumstances, Khaleda chose to take a stern stance concerning the movement and said "if no other leader took to the streets, I would do so alone if necessary to remove frustration of the leaders and activists."
The new programme is likely to be launched after the coming Victory Day (December 16). The leaders and activists are being told to prepare themselves mentally and organisationally to take to the streets.
The BNP policymakers feel that unless pressure is mounted on the government immediately through the movement, it will be difficult to tackle the situation. The government, otherwise, will try to split or disrupt the party.
The BNP high command is also consciously keeping in contact with powerful lobbies and groups at home and abroad before launching the movement.
Earlier, the BNP had announced it would launch movements before the last two Eids, but could do nothing.
The leaders feel this was because of the problems with the city committee and Chhatra Dal. That is why BNP Chairperson wants to fix Dhaka first before taking to the movement. Four months ago they formed the Dhaka committee with Mirza Abbas as convenor and Habib-un Nabi Khan as member secretary.
The Dhaka city unit committee sources said that restructure works have been completed on the formation of about 55 percent. By the end of this month, 80 percent of the committees will be complete. No committees will be formed in 20 percent of the wards for "strategic" reasons.
The BNP sources said that they had to form these committees almost silently as they were not managing to rent venues to hold the conferences. They are even afraid to congregate in any house in fear of being arrested by the police.
Habib-un Nabi Khan Sohel, Member Secretary of Dhaka city unit BNP, told The Daily Observer, "Alongside restructuring the committees, we are also focussing on coordination between BNP's affiliated organisations. The response from the leaders and activists has been encouraging and we will soon be able to build up a strong movement in Dhaka."
Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, Acting Secretary General of the party, told The Daily Observer, "We are already in the midst of a movement. When this phase is complete, we will voice our demands again. We will then see how the government responds. Our next programmes will depend on their reaction."
The party high command thinks the success of the new committee will largely depend on the sincerity of the Dhaka-based leadership.
Khaleda zia is also in trouble to announce new committees for Juba Dal and Sechchasebak Dal fearing intra-party feud.
"Dhaka plays the key role in making any movement a success as it's the centre of politics. So, it's essential to make our city unit stronger with major overhaul before waging a strong movement for resorting democracy through a holding a fresh election," said BNP Standing Committee member Lt Gen (retd) Mahbubur Rahman.