Govt releasing criminals from jail ahead of election: Gonotontro Moncho

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Dhaka, Aug 27: Gonotontro Moncho, a newly formed coalition of seven political parties, has alleged that the ruling Awami League government is granting bail to criminals involved in heinous crimes such as casino scams, gambling and drug trade, ahead of the upcoming national elections.

The government wants to keep the people in a frightened state by oppressing them with its goons and hoodlums, said the leaders of the political coalition at a protest rally and march programme in front of the National Press Club on Saturday, demanding regime change and bringing down the fuel oil and commodity prices.

Referring to former Jubo League leader and Casino kingpin Ismail Hossain Samrat, who was arrested and recently released on bail in all cases, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD) President ASM Abdur Rab said, “Those who started casinos and gambling in Bangladesh have been released. Where is the court now? These people now give over flowers on Bangabandhu’s grave.”

Referring to Inspector General of Police (IGP) Benazir Ahmed’s travel permit to attend a UN conference in the US, Nagorik Oikya Convener Mahmudur Rahman Manna said that after a lot of negotiations, the UN finally invited our chief police officer. He got a visa but he cannot go anywhere except this conference. Can there be anything more shameful than this?”

Member Secretary of Gono Odhikar Parishad and former Dhaka University Central Students’ Union (Ducsu) vice-president Nurul Haque Nur said, “They [the ruling party] want to keep repressing people through intimidation and dread. They trained the gangsters of Chhatra League and Jubo League – student and youth wings of Awami League- for this.”

“Sheikh Hasina is releasing criminals involved in various crimes including casino scams and drug trade ahead of elections so that they can bully people,” he added.

Junaid Saki, the chief coordinator of Gonosonghoti Andolon, said, “Chhatra League and Jubo League, the goon squads of this government, are attacking the protest marches and gatherings in various places. At the same time, the police forces are also attacking the protesters.”

Leaders of various left-leaning parties also spoke at the event presided by General Secretary of Biplobi Workers Party Saiful Haque.
After the rally, a procession was brought out from the National Press Club which ended at the Paltan intersection.