“One by one our leaders will be killed before our eyes and we will sit silently. That is not going to happen,” she warned at a programme on Sunday evening at her Gulshan office.
“I want to say clearly that Pintu has been killed. This has to be tried. Why even the court’s order was not followed?”
The BNP chief attacked her arch rival Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. “We know everything happens according to Hasina’s order. No one will be spared. Pintu was moved outside Dhaka at her order. Hasina is responsible for his death.”
The former leader of Lalbagh’s organised crime was moved to Rajshahi prison from Narayanganj on Apr 20. He died on Sunday of what RMCH cardiology chief Dr Rais Uddin confirmed was a cardiac arrest.
“He was an efficient and good organiser. He died from a lack of treatment,” Khaleda said venting anger at what she claimed was ‘wrongful’ imprisonment of the BNP leader.
Pintu, the former chief of BNP’s student front Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal, was given a life sentence in 2013 for conspiring to murder and helping the 2009 mutineers flee from the BDR headquarters adjacent to his turf Lalbagh.
“They [government] did not pay heed to a High Court order for his treatment. We heard that a doctor went for his treatment to Rajshahi prison but was not able to see Pintu.
“They did not even let the doctor see the ailing man. Would you say they are human beings? They are monsters under the guise of humans,” the former prime minister said.
She also said permission for Pintu’s Namaz-e-Janaza in Parliament was not denied although he was once an MP. “I heard they do not want to allow his body to be taken to Parliament. Allah will judge this.”
The BNP chief also demanded immediate return of their joint secretary general, Salahuddin Ahmed, who allegedly ‘disappeared’ two months back, to his family.
Accusing law enforcers of picking up the BNP leader, she said, “If Salahuddin Ahmed is not returned safely, if he is injured, no one will be spared.”
City corporation elections
Khaleda again brought allegations of widespread rigging and manipulation in the Apr 28 Dhaka and Chittagong city corporation polls.
The BNP chairperson said, “This was why we did not take part in the Jan 5 general elections.
“When we stayed away from the Jan 5, 2014 votes, many of our colleagues thought that we had popularity, we would have won if we participated. But the Apr 28 vote proved [our reasons] to them.”
She also came down hard on Chief Election Commissioner Kazi Rakibuddin Ahmed. “This CEC is useless, spineless. It seems as if he is blind.
“With so much being said in the media about the city polls, can he say elections were fair?
“He is stupid. We cannot expect fair elections from him.”
The former prime minister said Chittagong mayor-elect AJM Nasir Uddin was an ‘infamous criminal’.
“There is a murder case against him. He was in hiding for 14 years and got bail after filing nominations.”
“But (Dhaka South City Corporation mayor aspirant) Mirza Abbas was not given bail.
“Even ruling party henchmen would get bail but opposition leaders would not get it. Even our councillor [aspirants] were detained when they went to campaign.”