‘US visa policy creates huge pressure on BNP’

Published : 29 May 2023 10:40 PM

Information Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud on Monday said the US visa policy has created a huge pressure on the BNP as now the party has no scope of resisting the elections.

 “At a press briefing of the US State Department, they said that they have no headache over the caretaker government system. They want a free, fair and neutral election in Bangladesh. That means they don't support BNP's demand for a caretaker government. In fact, nobody supports it across the globe,” he said.

 “So, the BNP has no scope of talking about the issue at least at international arena. And the visa policy has created pressure on the BNP,” said Hasan at a view-exchange meeting with reporters on contemporary issues at the conference room of his ministry.

 He said, "During the announcement of the US visa policy in a press briefing they (US) said that they declared the policy in support of the transparent participatory elections that the Prime Minister of Bangladesh wants to conduct. And the government has reacted in the same way."

 The minister said the policy will be applicable to all, including the ruling party and parties. It will be applicable to anyone who disrupts elections and obstructs the democratic process, said Hasan.

 He said boycotting elections means obstructing the democratic process and resisting elections means creating conflict. The BNP can no longer do these and the visa policy has created a lot of pressure on the BNP, he added.

 Hasan said the BNP takes various programmes to obstruct polls. "I think, the US visa policy, recently announced by the US, will reduce the scope of the BNP to obstruct polls and they (BNP) will have to take part in the polls," he added.  He said the US visa policy is not only applicable to Bangladesh, but also applicable to many countries. 

 They said that the policies have been announced for some countries while the policies for the rest of the countries are yet to be declared. 

 Replying to another query over the BNP's programmes, the minister said the programmes of the party are as usual. They walk for a while, sit for a while and then vandalize for a while and now they will call programmes for running or walking instead of sitting, he added. 

Replying to another query about the recent Asia Media Summit in Indonesia, Hasan said, "The issues presented by me about social platforms came in the main declaration of the conference. In my presentation, I said that our life has been changed due to the exploration of social media in the last 10 to 15 years. Many problems have arisen along with the unlimited opportunities for communication.” 

He said the way fake news, created and served through social media, causes instability in the state as well as society. And common people do not understand the difference between news from the social media and mainstream media, he added. 

For this, he said, various crises, rumors are created and attempts are made to create communal conflict.  

Taking a closer look at these issues and working together to tackle these challenges globally came in the 'Bali Declaration', said Hasan.